Seniors Take Home the Powderpuff Trophy

On the cloudy afternoon of October 3rd, dozens of players, coaches, and spectators gathered to watch the most anticipated (and only) football game of the year. Powderpuff is the annual senior vs junior girls flag football game. As a time-honored tradition that goes back many years at Western Reserve Academy, the student body was beyond excited. 

The anticipation began at Morning Meeting the prior Friday. Senior Head Coach Michael Filippelli and Junior Head Coach Landon Allis gave quite a memorable announcement that culminated in Michael tearing apart the junior class shirt as a warning to the opposing team. 

On game day, both the junior and senior teams came out to the turf hours in advance to prepare for the contest. To add to the intensity, the seniors brought out the retired football jerseys as a means to instill fear into their opponents. Hoards of girls in pink t-shirts (juniors) and green jerseys (seniors) could be seen practicing catching, throwing, and various plays. 

From the onset of the game, the girls weren’t exactly abiding by the rules of flag football. Pushing, holding, and even hugging(?) were apparent to all except the referees. Evidently, all’s fair in love and Powderpuff. After nearly an hour and a half of unmerciful playing, the seniors came out with an astounding win of 28-6 and quite a lot of turf burn. 

Coach Filippelli couldn’t be happier: “I think the Powderpuff game this year showed how important football is to high schoolers. We saw grades bond, memories made, and Landon and the juniors get out-coached. It’s my favorite tradition at Reserve and I’m so proud of my fellow coaches and our players for leaving their hearts on the field.” Not only did Michael live up to his intimidating Morning Meeting announcement, but he and his coaching staff exceeded players’ expectations. Jimena Oliva ’22, an offensive lineman, lauded, “I think our win showed that it really came down to teamwork and the quality of our plays. I was definitely appreciative of how our amazing coaches were super adaptable because of their capability to read the state of the game and, from there, make changes on the fly.”

As for the junior class, they are already looking forward to it. Coach Landon Allis reflects, “It was a tough loss, but I’m looking to take on the class of 2024 next year.” Ultimately, the competition led to new bonds, strengthened class unity, and WRA’s premier football team. Who needs Friday night lights when you have Sunday afternoon Powderpuff?

Annie Cui ’22

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