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Attendance for Navy-Houston football game limited to Brigade of Midshipmen

U.S. Naval Academy midshipmen arrive at the stadium for the Navy-Air Force football game at Annapolis, Md., October 5, 2019.

JOE GROMELSKI/STARS AND STRIPES

By TIM SCHWARTZ | The Capital | Published: October 16, 2020

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (Tribune News Service) — The Brigade of Midshipmen will be allowed to attend Navy's next home football game against Houston Oct. 24, but no fans, families or guests will be permitted, Navy Director of Athletics Chet Gladchuk wrote in a news release.

On Oct. 8, Gov. Larry Hogan and Naval Academy Superintendent Vice Adm. Sean Buck announced the Brigade of Midshipmen would be allowed to attend the Navy-Temple game on Oct. 10, which the midshipmen relished. They marched to the stadium before the game and sat spaced out by company and with small roommate pods throughout the 18,000-seat lower bowl. All wore white cloth masks and were provided boxed dinners, as concessions were limited to bottled water. Restrooms were limited to 50% capacity with one-way traffic patterns.

The same rules and guidelines will apply for the Oct. 24 contest.

Hannah Ladd, a 3rd Class midshipmen, told The Capital on Saturday that it was her first chance to be with many of her classmates again as she was among the last classes to return to the Naval Academy this summer.

"This is the first time I've gotten to be with all my shipmates again," she said. "So it's pretty exciting. It's just us, so I think it's really neat we get to do this."

After a thrilling 31-29 victory against Temple on Saturday, Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo raved about the energy the Brigade of Midshipmen brought to the game.

"Awesome. The brigade here was such a big difference. Really happy that the brigade was here," he said. "They were a big, big factor. They were definitely 12th man for us today. Really happy they came and it was different with the music, with them. ... It felt like a home game tonight."

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