|Our little Texans cheerleader, ready for her first game.|
Oh my goodness, I can't even handle the cuteness!! This girl totally loves her cheerleading uniform, and she definitely likes to play the part when she wears it!
Connor and Kaitlynn's first game of the season was last week, and wouldn't you know, it was held at 8:00 in the morning. His team historically has such a tough time getting up, fed, dressed, and ready to play that early in the day. The good thing about those early games is that, while it's still hot, it's not as hot as it'll be later in the day.
|Kaitlynn and Connor before the first game.|
As I mentioned in my earlier post about Kaitlynn's cheerleading, I really had no idea what to expect for how she would handle the "demands" of cheering on the sidelines and performing the halftime dance. Add in the early morning and the intense summer heat, and it could be a disaster.
Connor, on the other hand, was SO pumped about his first game of the season. That kid just enjoys every aspect of football, including the tough practices. He is always ready to play. This year, Connor is starting on offense at tight end. He is still learning the position but loves every second of his time on the field.
|The cheerleaders lined up as the players ran through the team banner to start the game.|
|Connor, #90, listens to the pregame speech from one of his coaches.|
Every parent on the team is asked to help out in various ways to make game day run smoothly, whether it's helping on chains, bringing snacks, or taking game video. Jeff's job last season was the game monitor, which is the person with the clipboard that makes sure each player gets the required number of plays on offense and defense. It's actually a difficult job -- very tedious -- and tough to get volunteers for, but Jeff (ever the accountant) loves that role and was hoping to do it again this year.
Unfortunately, Jeff learned that this year the game monitor required special training. He was feeling quite rejected and demoted. But then on the morning of the first game, Coach asked Jeff if he'd be able to do it again and you would've thought Jeff had won the lottery! LOL! The other parents were joking throughout the game about how Jeff takes his job so seriously and how he feels like such a VIP with his clipboard. Beware of the paper cuts though!! (True story.)
|Jeff the game monitor. Wonder if we should get him a special hat or something? ;-)|
When it was time to play, it was obvious that the players weren't quite in their groove and were feeling some first game jitters. After only 5 or 6 plays into the game, the other team had already recovered our ball twice and was up by 2 touchdowns! You could just hear the collective groan from the parents of our boys. NOT a good way to kick off the season. Would we be able to come back?
Down a ways on the sidelines, the cheer squad -- now numbered at 10 -- was doing a great job rooting on our team. The girls were starting to get the hang of the cheers and we were seeing lots of cute smiles and "spirit" as they say.
|Lined up and cheering on the sideline. Hands on hips, smiles on lips!|
The cheering must've worked, because before we knew it, our players had fought their way back and tied up the game by halftime! So exciting!
And speaking of halftime, that's when the cheer squad travels to the visitors' side of the field to perform their Hello cheer. Afterwards, they walk back to the home crowd and perform their half-time dance. They've been working on these things for a few weeks, and our cheer coaches are so patient and loving with these girls. But bless their hearts, I just didn't think they were ready for the pressure of the halftime performance.
Boy, was I wrong!
|The squad walked over to the visitors' side to perform the Hello cheer.|
|Kaitlynn lined up for her halftime dance. Serious business! ha!|
|There's the smile!|
When the music came on, the girls performed their little hearts out! It was miserably hot, they had never performed before, and they were wearing brand new (stiff) uniforms. But they rocked it out! And at the end, they even concluded with a "stunt." So proud of this squad!
|The cheerleaders lined up and performing their halftime dance.|
|The cheer stunt after the dance.|
After halftime, the team resumed the game and came out with another couple of touchdowns to take the lead. But after the opposing team, the Ravens, scored once again, it was up to the Texans to take control and hold their lead. Could they do it?
|Kaitlynn on the sidelines, cheering for those Texans!|
|The players huddled up on one of the final drives. There's Connor, #90, smack in the middle.|
They did it! The Texans beat the Ravens, final score: 31-24. What a way to kick off the season, with an inspiring, exciting come-from-behind win for our Texans!
Looking forward to what the rest of our season has in store for us!