Powderpuff Girls Take the Field

Alison Counterman, Reporter

The second annual powderpuff football game kicked off Oct. 20.

The class of 2015 officers decided to introduce the idea of powder- puff games last spring. Class officers Johnna Miller, Morgan Ream, Brittany Bressler, Taylor Furry and Alyssa Lieberman put together powderpuff during 2013’s Spring Weekend.

“I had the idea at the beginning of last year because I went to my high school powderpuff game and I thought, ‘We don’t have [a game],’” Miller said.

With the introduction of men’s football last year, an opportunity for women to get involved in their own way seemed only right.

“I thought it would kind of be like a rite of passage because we have a boy’s football team,” said Miller.

Other officers were very interested in the idea of starting the annual powderpuff game, so getting the needed support for the idea was not a problem for Miller. She was happy that she knew the other officers had her back on this event.

“When [Bressler and Ream] came on, they really liked the idea, and we started out last spring during Spring Weekend,” she said.

Student involvement has in- creased from last year’s powder- puff game, Miller said. This year’s participation is more than double the amount from last year with about 12 people on each team, making for a great match, according to Miller.

“It’s growing and we’re really excited about that.”

The teams were blue and gold, named after the school’s colors. Teams were chosen randomly due to the larger number of players.

“Last year, we did it by class and we had larger participation from the underclassmen,” said Miller. “So to make it even this year, we just did blue and gold and we did it randomly.”

The game was complete with referees Bruce Riley of the Student Success Center and Jason Decker of Admissions.

Coaches came from the Residence Life staff. The blue team was coached by Resident Director Steve Wasilewski from MacDowell Hall, and Resident Director Laura Klym from McHale Hall. The gold team was coached by R.D. Julia Leighow from the townhouses along with her husband Matt Leighow.

Miller said practice and preparation was entirely up to the coaches. The Student Government Association served as the brains behind the planning and organizing of the game.

“We’re just organizing [the powderpuff game] and trying to run it as smoothly as possible,” said Miller.

Miller said that from the time the final rosters were sent out, there were two weeks for teams to practice accordingly and prepare for the game.

There was even word on the street that coaches Steve from the blue team and Matt from the gold team had playbooks prepared from the time they received their rosters. Everyone involved had the opportunity to make it as fun or as serious as they wanted, and this group chose to have a good time with the second annual event.

“Our goal is just to make it one of those recurring popular events on campus, and eventually we want to pass it down to a different class once we graduate,” said Miller.

Speech language pathology major Allison McCallister participated in the powderpuff game during Spring Weekend last semester and said her overall experience was a blast. McCallister believed it was
a fun athletic experience that she would do again if she had the time to participate.

McCallister’s involvement was reminiscent of high school powderpuff games, much like Miller’s original motivation to bring this event to campus.

“In high school the junior and seniors played against one another and it was so much fun,” McCallister said. “The rivalry between the grades made the game so much more intense and worth playing I thought.”

McCallister originally signed up to play individually but soon found she wasn’t alone.

“It turned out that a lot of my friends had also decided to do it,” McCallister said.

Unlike this past powderpuff teams, McCallister said the teams that participated in the Spring Weekend game last year did not hold practices.

“We came a little early last year and practiced a couple quick plays and then the game began,” McCallister said.

She said she recommends the game to all students.

“It’s something fun and different for girls to participate in and (it) allows them to show off their skills,” McCallister said. “It goes to show that football isn’t just for guys. Girls can get down and dirty too.”

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