Powderpuff comes to campus

The tradition of Powderpuff games first came about in the 1940s when women began filling in to play football games while men were gone fighting during World War II. Generations later, it became a high school homecoming tradition, and over time became what we know as today,

The first Powderpuff football game, like what we see today, was held in 1972, in Wallingford, Connecticut. Judy Samaha, a physical education teacher and coach for Mark T. Sheehan High School at the time, began this event to incorporate more girls into athletic activities. As an American high school tradition, Powderpuff allows girls to play flag football while the boys typically cheer them on. Senior Ari Turner shared, “A lot of the guys who didn’t sign up to be a coach will be there cheering for us as cheerleaders. It’s going to be hilarious.”

The name Powderpuff was suggested because the women chose to poke fun at themselves by staying on the field at halftime and putting on fresh makeup before the entertained spectators. 

At FVHS each grade level will wear distinct colors shared by senior Sophie Behrendt. “This year Seniors are wearing dark pink, Juniors will be in blue, Sophomores in violet, and freshmen are green,” said Behrendt.

Powerpuff rules vary slightly from regular football play. The FVHS game will be 7v7 on the main football field. Tackling in Powderpuff play consists of pulling flags without holding the ball carrier with the hand or any part of the body. A tackler who forces the ball carrier to the ground is guilty of aggressive tackling. Flags must be worn on the outside of all types of clothing and the entire flag must be exposed.

Senior Alessandra Wilcox is confident in a win for the senior class. “We have motivated coaches. They are football players themselves, and we also have some very athletic girls on the team. If we lose, I will probably be mad at first because seniors usually win. But I´ll get over it and remember it was all for fun and memories,” said Wilcox 

Turner, who is confident the seniors will win and get redemption for their junior team’s loss last year, said, “I played last year and it was a great experience to make new friends. This year it’s my last opportunity to play, hang out, and joke around. It’s outside of the classroom and everyone can be themselves.”

This isn’t Behrendt’s first rodeo playing Powderpuff. ¨I have played every year besides sophomore ‘covid’ year when it was not offered. As a member of the Student Council, I am required to play, but I enjoy it a lot and would do it either way because it is always fun,” said Behrendt. 

For  Wilcox, this will be a new experience. ¨I  am very excited because I have always wanted to play in Powderpuff but waited until senior year to do it. I wanted to make the year more memorable and to be able to say I did it. I am just excited and cannot wait to see how it goes and just have some fun,” said Wilcox. 

Turner shared similar sentiments to both Wilcox and Behrendt. ¨I am really excited to play this year as a senior because last year, the juniors got cheated. If we don’t win the refs or other teams most likely cheated because historically seniors win,” said Turner

Practice will be held on Nov. 14 after school, followed by the big game on Nov. 15 at 5 p.m. It is $2 to come to watch the game. 

“I am looking forward to making great memories representing the senior class and my last chance before high school ends for many of us,” said Turner.