Sunday, November 11, 2012


Arizona 8-man football State Championships--
November 10, 2012
It was COLD--like 50 degrees.  Blankets, coats, hats, gloves, hot chocolate. Don't mock me.
This was a tough game.  Remember Ben's winning catch at this game?
That's who we were playing for the trophy.
Even though the score was 16-0 at the half, we knew that the Panthers had it in them to come back and win in the second half.
 It was a battle of the defenses all night, with neither team able to capitalize with a big move. The clock was ticking down, Heritage had possession, but they failed to whittle enough time off the clock, so they were forced to turn the ball back over to Career with less than a minute to go.
Career was desperate, and even as their receiver (#7) was getting smashed between #22 and #5 (my boy!), he tried a futile lob into the backfield.
It didn't work.
For the third time in four appearances at the championships, the Heritage Heroes were crowned Arizona State Champions.
 We rushed the field to congratulate our boys on a hard-fought victory and fantastic season.
 Three for three-peat
Just as the boys were grabbing their moms for a picture, Ben said, "Without these women, we never would have been born!"  What is it about moms and sons?  Love these boys, even when they both smell like they've been playing football all night long.
The victory and celebration were tainted somewhat with the surprisingly emotional announcement by the head coach that it was his last game as head coach.  I hope he's wrong.  

There's something about football and hard work and teammates that turns boys to men.  That's what I love about high school sports--watching young men work together for a common goal, supporting and helping each other to be their best.  And good coaches--positive, uplifting, teaching men who know the importance they play in these boys' lives--are hard to find.
A quick team prayer together for the last time of the season--a prayer of gratitude not for the victory, but for the safety experienced on both sides of the ball, and an expression that the other team would make it back home from their three-hour drive safely.  Such good boys with their perspectives in the right place.
So ends another football season.

And it was a great one.  Thanks Heritage Academy.  Thanks Coach Bowers, Coach Langston, Coach Portilla, and Coach Roberts.  Thanks, Heroes.  

Until next year.


  1. Yeah!!! Wisconsin just had their first 8 man championship this looks like it was fun to watch and perfect football weather!

  2. Way to go Ben!!! Wish that I could have seen that gome! I would have loved to watch him play in 50 degree weather!! :)

  3. So glad I was able to witness his playing last week. What a terrific time for those young men.

  4. It doesn't get much better than that!


  5. Awesome post! Love the pictures. Ben and McKay are just such studs, I love them both. And finally, you look fantastic in your glasses! No really, so cute!

  6. Jenny, you made me sooo nostalgic for my boys' football days. Such good times, and yes, many of the lessons learned there are continuing to serve them well. Congratulations to your son and his team!