Football players from the Airdrie Storm Pee Wee U12 team took their unbeaten record to the Battle of the Praires in January and came out on top in their age group as members of the Airdrie Eclipse.
During the Regular season in the fall, the Storm ran through the competition, claiming the Calgary and area division one championship by beating the Okotoks Eagles 62-8. They then went to Red Deer and beat the Scotia Bucks 88-0 for the Wild Rose Championship (provincial championship).
With this being said, the team was looking for some real competition, so most of the team went to play for the Airdrie Eclipse so they could play the Battle of the Prairies.
Airdrie Eclipse is a private football program run by Eclipse Athletic Training, which helped send many local area athletes and most of the Airdrie Storm team to Moose Jaw to take on two teams from Saskatchewan. The Eclipse ended up winning their age group, but they got the competition they were looking for against the Sask Selects U12 team, according to Head Coach Tyrell Rohl.
"I think the final score in that first game that we played against them was 28-20 which was really close."
When it came to the final for the U12 age group the Eclipse ended up playing the Sask Selects U12 team once again and the game was even closer.
"We were down at halftime in that championship game 14-12. It was the first time all season we'd been down in a game. The boys had to rally in the second half of that game and we came back to win it 26-20."
Rohl is very proud of how the team performed and hopes they are able to participate in other tournaments like this.
This was the third annual Battle of the Prairies which saw teams from all over including California and Massachusettes. Nearly 1,000 different athletes and 20 different teams from U11 to U18 participated. The tournament showcased 11-on-11 tackle football, adhering to the four-down American rules, and excluded punts or kickoffs.
Rohl stated they are already hoping to go back next year, hopefully with even more age groups from Airdrie.
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