Nation's last tackle powderpuff football game gets saved

AP News
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Posted: May 20, 2016 3:51 PM

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) — Almost sacked for safety concerns after 50 years, the nation's last tackle powderpuff football game will now be played.

Students and parents from Florida's Jupiter High School persuaded the town to sponsor the all-girl game after the principal cancelled, fearing girls would be injured.

Parent organizer Lori Walsh said Friday that the game will be played May 27 between teams representing the school's senior and junior classes. The girls are holding practices with members of the Jupiter boys' team serving as coaches under adult supervision.

The only rule modifications from boys' tackle football will be no kickoffs or punts, Walsh said.

Thousands of other American high schools host flag powder-puff, a no-contact version in which girls stop their opponents by pulling flags off their belts, rather than wrestling them to the ground.

But Florida schools already offer girls' flag football as an interscholastic sport, and the Jupiter girls said the equivalent of a class vs. class scrimmage would feel boring after 50 years of tackle.

The cancellation had blindsided Jupiter, a coastal Palm Beach County town where people have packed the school's football stadium for the annual game.

While boys dress like female cheerleaders in tight shorts, crop tops and wigs, girls relish the chance to experience the thrill of competing before a roaring crowd instead of playing softball or soccer in front of a few dozen parents and friends.