|Inscrit le: 05 Jan 2018|
|With each step Andie Schlosshan took on the football field, she felt another pair of eyes on her.
Schlosshan showed up to the early August football practice to test the waters with the Blue Devils junior varsity team. Her potential teammates were running a lap around the field, and she watched one after another turned their attention toward her as she walked toward the coaches.
The echo chamber of society amplified her doubts. Even people with the best intentions expressed concern that the sport would prove too physical, too aggressive, too violent for a girl.
As those thoughts creeped in, another set of worries cropped up.
"If I did play, I wasn't sure how people would think and how the coaches would treat me," Schlosshan said. "I let dumb people talk me out of it."
So as the boys from her grade suited up for the Blue Devils JV team in eighth grade and ninth grade, Andie held back.
That might have spelled the end for Andie's could have been football career if not for the encouragement of Cunningham. Cunningham also serves as an assistant for the varsity baseball team, which rode the Wholesale Team Jerseys | Cheap Jerseys same bus as Schlosshan and the varsity softball team to away games this spring.
On bus trips, Schlosshan would talk to Cunningham about football, and Cunningham started asking her if she would play football for him in the fall.
"I saw somebody that worked hard, and I saw a leader," Cunningham said. "And I needed that for this team. So all spring I was joking with her, but serious at the same time: 'Are you coming to play football for me? Are you coming out for my team?'"
Schlosshan wavered over the summer, but after a stream of friendly cheap nfl jerseys free shipping chides from Cunningham and classmates, she decided she finally would give football a try.
"I think the biggest obstacle is the perception that girls can't do it, or that they're not going to be accepted doing it," Mathews athletic director Derek Kibler said. "When Coach Cunningham reached out to her and recruited her, I think that helped Andie overcome that barrier."
Her course of action decided, Schlosshan then had to convince her mother.
Jessica Schlosshan did not jump on board right away, but she knew her daughter would be near impossible to hold back.
"Trying to tell her no isn't something that's easily done," Jessica Schlosshan said. "When she was six, she came home from school with a Mathews little league slip. And she kept asking 'Can I please, please, please play?' until we signed her up."
Jessica Schlosshan saw the clash of bodies on the football field and worried that her daughter would get injured. More than an injury itself, she worried what it would do to Andie's Cheap Jerseys other athletic dreams; her daughter has talked about playing college softball for years.
"But at this point with travel softball we see girls getting carted off left and right," Jessica Schlosshan said. "Shoot, I hit a deer while I was driving last week. Almost anything you do you can get hurt. And I don't want her to grow up and have regrets."
So Jessica Schlosshan relented. Still, she feared backlash.
"We're in Mathews," she said. "It's so small and old fashioned and country, and I was really worried about what people were going to think about a girl being on the football team."
A visit to the Olympia Sports store in Gloucester County to buy football cleats offered mother and daughter a preview of the community reaction.
"Their faces in that store were priceless," Jessica Schlosshan said. "They couldn't believe it."
Andie Schlosshan, though, left her fears behind as she dove into her new sport. A lifetime of softball prepared her for the intense conditioning, but not much else translated between the sports.
"I felt like a baby coming out here, because I didn't know what to do," Schlosshan said. "But after one practice, I was hooked."
What she lacked in experience she made up for in enthusiasm, and she threw herself at every drill. Jessica Schlosshan remembers her daughter coming home "black and blue from head cheap nfl jerseys to toe" during the first week of practice with the Blue Devils.
Andie Schlosshan credits cheap nfl jerseys her team with the smooth transition. Despite the stares at that first practice, they quickly welcomed her into the fold.
"Probably after the first week it was good," Schlosshan said. "No one looked at me funny anymore. Everyone just got used to it."
Schlosshan plays right guard, fullback, defensive tackle and defensive end for Mathews. She brings an imposing presence to the line of scrimmage, combining muscle with speed to explode into opponents. She has played almost every down this season for the Blue Devils.