Viera High football team plays first regular season game since hazing incident

Viera High School’s football season is officially underway more than two weeks after a scandal rocked the locker room.

Brevard Public Schools says several students were suspended following a hazing incident involving football players. Since then, the entire football team and coaching staff have undergone anti-hazing training.

For parents like Jeanne Boniello, whose son is the percussion captain of the school's marching band, supporting the school Friday night during the first game of the regular season was important.

"We're super happy that the kids are out there doing what they love. They put in a lot of hard work, a lot of effort, and we're just happy to have them out there," Boniello said.

Some on social media have questioned the timing of the team’s return to the field.

Back on Aug. 21, superintendent Dr. Mark Rendell said the team wouldn’t play again until the investigation into the hazing incident was completed.

"When all of that is complete, when the investigation is complete, and we feel like we have everything in place with the culture and climate, we can resume the season," Rendell said at the time.

As of Friday, that investigation was still underway. But for some parents, the timing is fair.

"I think that not penalizing the kids [who] have nothing to do with it was super important because they did put in a lot of work. There was the band, the cheerleaders, the kids that were not involved, the other team, so for them, it was important that they got back out there and did what they were meant to do," Boniello said. 

Friday night's game ended just before 9:45 p.m., with the Viera Hawks losing to the Satellite Scorpions by only one point, 28-29.