Arnold leads South in 46th Shrine Bowl

Ian Arnold carries the ball up the field during last weekend’s Shrine Bowl. Harrison Epstein photo

Harrison Epstein

The Shrine Bowl is a marquee sporting event for some of the best high school football players in Wyoming, but that’s not where players made their memories.
For Glenrock running back Ian Arnold, the time spent on the field last Saturday was just an added bonus.
He highlighted the time spent with the Shriners and with the children at the Shriners Hospitals for Children in Salt Lake City.
“It really opened my eyes to the Shriners hospital and really what a lot of people go through,” Arnold said.
The Shriners have two organization headquarters in Wyoming, in Cheyenne and Casper. As for the game itself, taking place at Natrona County High School in Casper, the South lost 29-19. It was the closest Shrine Bowl since 2011 when the South lost by six.
Arnold started the game on the field for South playing a hybrid halfback position. The South was adamant about their plan. They wanted to drive forward and score early.
The first touchdown of the game was scored by Arnold, catching a three-yard pass in front of the end zone. It was Arnold’s only catch of the day and one of three touchdowns for the team.
On the ground, Arnold was the same player the Herders faithful have watched for years on the gridiron. He finished the day offensively with seven rushes for 58 yards.
Arnold also joined the special teams unit in a pinch. After the South’s punter suffered an injury early in the game, Arnold was asked to fill in as punter.
“They really counted on me and I feel like I really did pull through,” he said.
Arnold punted twice in the game, though only one went off without anything special. On one punt, he was forced to re-kick after a penalty was called. He also had two different fake punt opportunities.
There was a fake punt run that he converted easily for a first down and then toward the end of the game was a fake punt pass that fell incomplete.
Before the ball could hit the ground though, the referees threw a flag and called pass interference and gave the South a first down. When the North kneeled down for the final time and the clock hit zero, all the players met at the middle of the field to talk with each other and take pictures.
The players had one last chance to communicate with parents and coaches how important they were.
“I just want to thank all my coaches who all got me to this point and the Shrine Bowl coaches,” Arnold said.
While he only had one week of experience with the Shriners as an organization, Arnold did not discount the possibility of joining the club in the future.
“They’re nothing but good, they raise money for a hospital where kids can go and get free help,” Arnold said. “It’s a very good cause.”
Now that his time in high school is finished, Arnold will attend the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology to play football.


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