Kristen Worry "worries" the seniors, but they emerge victorious nonetheless in Powder Puff

Junior Kristen Worry
Kristen Worry is fast. And that speed manifested itself on the first play of the Powder Puff game when she returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown, giving the juniors an early 7-0 lead in the annual flag football game pitting senior girls against junior girls.

The seniors responded on their ensuing drive when Ari Baughman scored to tie the game. Not to be outdone, Worry ran for another touchdown on the juniors' subsequent drive, but it was called back due to a penalty. Worry continued to be a threat, however.

"When Kristin Worry is on, I’m worried," senior Mackenzie Miller commented from the sideline.

As the game continued, both the flag grabbing skills and intensity on the field increased. Worry scored yet another touchdown for the juniors with a minute left in the first half, ostensibly giving the juniors a lead going into halftime, but the seniors were not done yet. After Rachel Shortes caught a pass late in the half, Coach Derrick Morgan called for a timeout to plan the upcoming play. Erin Murphy made an unsuccessful attempt at a touchdown, followed by another touchdown attempt, but this time rather successful by tying the game at 14-14 as half time started.
Homecoming King, senior
Collin "Bear" Shanks with his mother.
Photo courtesy of Anne Harnish

During halftime, the coronation of the Homecoming King occurred. Several of the senior coaches were candidates; ultimately, three football players -- Chase Pirozzi, Andrew Hay, and Bear Shank -- were named second runner-up, first runner-up, and King respectively. 

Meanwhile, inside the locker room, the senior girls remained frazzled because of the physicality of the game, and the closeness of the score. The locker room meeting began with some disagreement, but settled into a positive pep talk from the student coaches.

As halftime neared its end, it was time to commence the second half of the back and forth game. The seniors started the second half with the ball. Shay McComsey scored a touchdown for the seniors, making the score 21-14. For a while, the game was characterized by fouls and fumbles. As Erin Murphy tried to score, the seniors committed a holding penalty.

The overall intensity of the game radiated amongst the players. 

“It is more intense than I thought!” Julia Pritchard exclaimed while coming off the field.
Senior powder puff boy cheerleaders motivate the crowd during the annual juniors vs. senior game.
The senior boys were coached by Ms. Candace Schneider and Mrs. Michelle Schatzmann.
Video courtesy of Mrs. Michelle Schatzmann,.
With eight minutes left in the second half, Kristen Worry scored another touchdown, tying the score 21. The tackles and ball movement continue through the last five minutes of the game, until a penalty was called on the juniors with three minutes to play. The only ways to catch Kristen are to either tackles her or run her out of bounds.

"When you have a weapon like that, you have to use it, and use it often," says Dr. Benjamin Feeney, assistant principal and coach of the junior team in regards to the relentless utilization of Worry on the offense.

Interestingly, Worry and Julia Myers -- another frequent weapon for the junior team -- were only allowed to play in the game because the girls soccer team did not have a game, as it did in past years.
Action from the Powder Puff game
Late in the game, another penalty nullified a big run for Worry, and there was hope for the seniors, who needed to stop Worry on fourth down to get the ball back. They did.

The seniors drove down the field, and reached the red zone with a few seconds remaining. After an incomplete pass, the seniors discussed kicking a field goal, but the referees -- Mr. Spencer as well as math teachers Mr. Heyser and Mr. Achille -- ruled that was not allowed, as field goals and kicking in general can be a safety concern.
The seniors celebrate their "walk-off victory"
Photo by Alyssa Van Lenten
Consequently, with two seconds remaining, the seniors lined up for one final play, and quarterback Erin Murphy rushed for a touchdown as time expired, giving the seniors a 28-21 victory, and continuing the senior class's historical dominance in the Powder Puff game.

More Powder Puff game photos by Maya Pieters.

--Maggie Johnson, Assistant Sports Editor, and Benjamin Pontz, Editor-In-Chief; Photos by Alyssa Van Lenten, Local Editor

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