CANFIELD, Ohio (WYTV) – Two local flag football teams had the chance to play in a tournament at the end of August, meeting each other in the final game.
In August, the Youngstown Youth Flag Football Association (YYFFA) sent two teams to a tournament in New Hampshire. Both finished tournament play undefeated.
“We’re not a big town like Boston and, you know, up there, so for us to go up there and show what we do from one league is pretty amazing,” said Tom Titus, coach of the Fairway Raiders.
It wasn’t the first time the YYFFA went out-of-state to compete, but it was the first time for one of the league’s teams, the Fairway Raiders.
The 8- and 9-year-olds are all in the same class at South Range.
“I just plucked them out of the second-grade teacher’s class and said why don’t we get a team together? Why don’t we see how we compete? And that’s how we kind of got it all started,” Titus said.
Heading into the playoffs, the Fairway Raiders took the top seed. The other YYFFA team, the Youngstown Penguins, sat at third.
Both teams met up in the championship game, where the Youngstown Penguins pulled away with the win.
“It was really fun having the opportunity to play with my friends and getting another ring,” said Youngstown Penguins player Jonathan Burney.
Head coach for the Penguins and league organizer Elliot Giles says he’s proud of how well each team has done, but he’s more proud of how they represented Youngstown.
“I want them to be, even after they’re done playing for me, be better players, be better people and do good things in the community,” Giles said.
Something he learned when he was a wide receiver for the Youngstown State Penguins.
“I think every practice I try to bring up something that coach Tressel taught as far as not only being a good player but a good person,” Giles said.
Both teams plan to head down to Washington, D.C. in October for another tournament.