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The #1 News Source of Marietta High School

The Pitchfork

Flag football, Area Champs to Elite Eight

Flag+football%2C+Area+Champs+to+Elite+Eight

Flag Football is an increasingly popular sport in the United States. In 2020, all Georgia high schools had the option to add girls flag football as a sport. Marietta took on this offer and created a Flag Football team open to the girls of the high school.

In the inaugural season, the fall of 2020, Marietta was only able to create a varsity team to compete; there were not enough students for a junior varsity team. The varsity team finished the season in the Elite 8 with a record of 7-2-1. In the second year of the team they still had only one team playing, but the success of the team from 2020 carried over. The 2021 team made it all the way to the state championship and ended the season as the state runner-ups. In 2022, the team experienced the growth of the sport and they were able to make a Junior Varsity team. This JV team was only able to play a small number of games throughout the season, but were gaining valuable experience. The 2022 Varsity team was able to take it all the way to the Final Four and end with a 14-3 record.

This year, for the first time, the team was Area Champion. They advanced to the Elite 8. They also were able to continue with the 2 team model and had a record setting 50 girls come to try out.

“Everyone on the team put their full heart and effort into keeping this program alive and successful,” Harper Mangine (12) said.

The Flag Football team is out on the practice field almost everyday to run plays and talk over strategy. They even came out over the Thanksgiving break in November.

“They encourage one another to bring their best every practice,” Head Coach Katherine Copeland said. “When it comes to playoffs we stick to routine. We focus on our game and being the best versions of ourselves.

They watch tapes of their past games and opposing teams so they can ensure they are putting their best foot forward. The Flag Football game days almost always consist of 3 high schools playing against each other, so at practice the team must work to prepare for multiple teams and they must practice in any weather condition.

On Tuesday Dec. 5, the flag football team took on Kell High School at Northcutt Stadium. Marietta won in a shutout game with a score of 20-0.

“Once we started connecting, that’s when we began to succeed in our games,” Lylah Campos-Nodari (10) said.

With this win, they took on Cherokee High School and won in another shutout with a score of 25-0. In these 2 games combined 4 girls worked to put Marietta on the board, Caroline Bryant (11), Marley Quammie (12), Kaylee Wang (9), and Kennedi Young (11). These wins took Marietta to the Elite 8 and allowed them to play one more game against Blessed Trinity.

On Thursday Dec. 7, the Flag Football team took on Blessed Trinity High School, who Marietta had lost to ear- lier in the season. Early in the season, Marietta suffered a 27-0 loss against Blessed Trinity, and unfortunately Marietta fell to the same fate, on Dec. 7 with a 19-0 loss the season came to an end.

Even though the team’s season was cut short, players and coaches were still immensely proud of how they performed and grew throughout the season.

“Our confidence levels have skyrocketed and we believe in ourselves more than anything, which I love,” Kennedi Young (11) said.

In the end the team worked incredibly hard and ended the season with an impressive 16-5 record.

“We all have improved as a whole, separately and together as a family,” Kaylee Wang (9) said.

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About the Contributor
Reagan Kelley, Staff Writer
 Reagan Kelley is a freshman at Marietta High School and a new staff member on the school newspaper, Pitchfork. She is currently in the Sports Medicine pathway and hopes to join the Sports Medicine Club to further her knowledge in the field. She also hopes to join HOSA to get more background in healthcare. After school she participates in dance at Eastside School of Ballet and is at the highest level possible. Reagan is excited for the opportunity to be a member of Pitchfork.
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