Being sweet and innocent doesn’t work on the football field, especially when girls from Warren County High School competed in the second annual Lady Pioneer Powder Puff football games Thursday and Friday.
A tenacious junior team, led by the running of Camerie Martin and passing of Jessie Newby, took the coveted crown as it beat the senior class 14-13.
Warren County High School girls basketball coach Erick Baird introduced the idea last year as a fundraising opportunity for his team, but he didn’t realize the idea would grow into a competition of classes that it was Thursday at Warren County High School soccer field.
Equipped with flags and face paint, the junior class wreaked havoc on its opponents on its way to a championship.
Martin was the driving force on offense, using her speed to blow by the sophomore class in the team’s first game. Martin scored on two long touchdown runs as the juniors won 18-0.
Newby was the defensive stalwart as her interception return for a touchdown accounted for her team’s third score.
Not to be outdone, the senior class rode Maddie Smartt to a victory over the freshman class and a berth into the championship game.
Smartt arrived shortly after halftime, but wasted little time making her presence felt. Smartt scored on two long touchdown runs as the seniors prevailed 20-6 to set up a showdown between the two eldest teams in the championship.
Smartt opened the game with a 65-yard touchdown run on the first play, but the juniors answered back as Martin capped a long drive with a short TD scamper. After Newby scored on a conversion attempt, the juniors led 7-6.
Smartt gave the seniors a late lead on the highlight run of the night. Smartt made every defender on the junior class miss as she zig-zagged through the defense for a 70-yard touchdown.
The lead didn’t last long. Newby led the juniors on the game-winning drive as she mixed in passes to Lexy Holmes, Zaya Holmes and Ansley Mullican to move the ball down the field.
Martin scored the go-ahead touchdown, giving the juniors a narrow 13-12 victory and bragging rights.
Although the students were in fierce competition Thursday night, they joined forces Friday for a game in front of their classmates against the faculty.
The result of the game was a mystery, with each side claiming a 26-23 victory at the end. Senior Rachel Nokes said the students won, while teacher Tyler Hillis claimed his side was the victor.
Athletic director Todd Willmore had the best claim to the win as he scored for both sides during the game. Willmore started with the faculty, but played quarterback for the students in the second half.
In the end, the true winner was the Lady Pioneer basketball team, which raised money for everyday operations for the program.