Now, to the scrappy high school football team bringing a burst of energy to a town that just got hit by a tornado a week ago. The players from washington, illinois, are gunning for a state title with... See More
Now, to the scrappy high school football team bringing a burst of energy to a town that just got hit by a tornado a week ago. The players from washington, illinois, are gunning for a state title with a semichampionship game today. They're playing against a team nicknamed the cyclones. Here's abc's alex perez. Reporter: It's the moment the washington, illinois, high school football team has been waiting for all season. The panthers are headed to the state semifinals today. If we make it to finals, it will be amazing for our school, our community. Reporter: But after all those hard-earned wins to get here, the team had its biggest loss ever. In almost 200-mile-per-hour tornado ripped their central illinois town to shreds last sunday. Ten players had their homes flattened by the monster twister, including star quarterback, colton marshal. It's to us and our community. Reporter: With the devastation fresh and without a field to practice on, the team this town loves, started to clean up. The first 48 hours, the kids did a great job of helping the community out. Reporter: Determination bringing life to a town in shambles. I'm sure the boys will all be ready. Reporter: And getting ready with a little help is what they've been doing. Illinois state university donating their field so the panthers could practice this week. You know, laugh, smile, have some fun today. Reporter: The mayor of washington calls the team a beacon of hope, in what has been a week of sorrow and loss. I hope when they come back with a victory and come back in these city limits, we're going to make some noise for them. And celebrate something in the midst of this. Reporter: The panthers are the underdogs in this showdown. But if a tornado can't stop them, the community is convinced nothing will. Alex perez, abc news, illinois. We're not supposed to take
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