WAXAHACHIE — For one day a year, Waxahachie High School sports go topsy-turvy and meet at the city's football cathedral to settle once and for all, which class is queen-for-the-year.
Girls become gridiron greats and boys become overenthusiastic cheer-tators for a single afternoon of football madness.
With the help of three touchdowns by Deaijah Allen and touchdown strike accuracy of Taylor Camp, the class of 2018 pulled a 42-36 upset of the defending champions Wednesday at Stuart B. Lumpkins Stadium.
The grey-clad junior team negated two scores each by Ariana Acosta and Katelynn Glenn and two leaping first down grabs by the latter with a game-tying, one-handed catch by Allen and breakneck sprint to the right pylon by Thomas.
"We had to represent for the soccer girls today," Camp said with a smile. "Klarisa, Ariana and I stepped up and scored when we had to. [Ariana] was on the other side of the field today, but she mad it hard for us to come away with a win."
I'm just glad she threw it to me, because I was wide open and wanted to take it in for the win," Thomas added, jabbing Camp in the hip with her pointer finger. "well, that and that I didn't drop it. That would've been ugly. It was really on me to catch it because Taylor has been throwing strikes all game. Bryse (Salik) better watch out. He may have some competition."
Salik, The Indians' starting quarterback and the 2017 Powder Puff football games' quarterbacks' coach, shot Thomas wry glance from behind his clipboard.
"Not likely," he chuckled. "She's good though. I didn't have to teach her much of anything and she's got pretty good form, too."
The game swayed back and forth, whether or not it was after a juggling catch by Acosta on a laser beam from quarterback Jada Kitna, a bull rush into the end zone by Chelsey Catlett or a one-handed grab by an end zone bound Allen. There was no telling if the seniors would defend their crown of if a young upstart group would seize control for themselves.
Until the final minutes of the game and Allen, Thomas and the juniors struck twice within six offensive plays.
"I was so nervous. I can't believe I caught it," Allen said. "When the ball went up in the air, I was saying to myself, "Catch the ball, catch the ball, catch the ball. I'm just glad I caught it and our defense was good. I think I'm going to go talk to Coach (Jon) Kitna, next. Maybe I can play a little receiver for him next year."
Allen's juke of senior Shelby Martin — her first missed tackle of the game — on a five-yard out route tied the game and deadlocked the score at 36.
The junior defense, which stonewalled Kitna, Catlett and crew at the goal line, gave way to Thomas' touchdown two plays later.
In a game that had everything from breakaway scores to cheerleader hijinks and shenanigans and a Sharrika Livingston pick-6 interception to a game-winning, sudden death Thomas touchdown, the Waxahachie High School junior and senior classes turned Wednesday's 2017 Powder Puff football game into one for the history books.
For most, though, the game was less about scores and scoreboards and winners and losers. It was about saying goodbye to Waxahachie a final time before life changes at the speed of college.
"It's just fun to know where on the path that we are on," said Madelyn Ward, A senior outside hitter for Head Coach Sandy Faussett's Lady Indian volleyball team. "I wouldn't of wanted to end my (high school) career any other way. We really bonded with the football players that were our coaches and gained a better understanding of life from their perspective. Even though we didn't win the game, I feel like we won because we were with the people we love and we grew up with, as well asThe girls that were on the team with us. We got to end our careers The way we wanted to – together."
Marcus S. Marion, @MarcusMarionWNI