The halftime entertainment at most Chattanooga Football Club games at Finley Stadium usually features a game or two on the field for some of the boys and girls in attendance to play.
On Saturday, during Chattanooga FC’s 2-1 win over the Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves, CFC’s Robbie Hill and Tom Webster got involved in the action. But instead of doing anything with a ball, the show involved the players’ hair and a pair of clippers.
Hill and Webster got buzz cuts, in front of the announced crowd of 1,653, to support the Jack’s Chattanoggins fundraiser for the Children’s Hospital Foundation at Erlanger, a project started by 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek of Signal Mountain.
Hill said he let his hair get a bit long to make Saturday’s show more dramatic.
“I was going to get it cut a few weeks ago, but I decided I’d wait,” the Englishman said with a smile. “I’m always happy to help out with charities and this was a great cause.”
Donations were accepted throughout the game and the main Jack’s Chattanoggins event is today at the Chattanooga Market in the First Tennessee Pavilion.
Hill’s teammate, reserve defender Thomas Clark, handled his clipping duties. Jack’s mother, Dawn, cut Webster’s hair. Despite being an Air Force Academy graduate, Clark said that was his first time with wielding the clippers.
After a scoreless first half, the action picked up dramatically in the second. In the 65th minute, CFC fullback Nick Odeny pushed forward and scored on a breakaway to put CFC up 1-0.
Five minutes later, Atlanta’s Aziz Izmour was tackled in the box by CFC’s Nick Chase, who had been pushed in the back moments before, and the referee awarded the Silverbacks a penalty kick. The score was tied soon after, but it was a penalty kick in the 89th minute that lifted CFC to a win.
Mark Beattie flipped the ball toward a defender who inadvertently touched the ball with his hands, giving CFC a chance to regain the lead. Forward Chris Ochieng sent the ball into the net for the victory, which kept CFC in first place in the National Premier Soccer League Southeast Conference standings with a 5-1-1 record in league play.
“I was nervous, but after the referee blew the whistle I calmed down and picked a spot and hit it,” Ochieng said.
Chattanooga FC visits the Georgia Revolution next Saturday before hosting the Under-20 team for CF Monterrey, in Mexico, on July 4.
John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...