Our Daily (G)races

Training to be the best wife, mom, runner, and person I can be each and every day....

Friday, December 30, 2016

Samuel's freshman Rams tackle football season

Last spring Drew and I were asked to let Samuel play tackle football.  My initial reaction was "no way!"  Even Samuel said no when first asked and I was super surprised by that.  Well, our friends were persistent and continued to ask throughout the spring.  Drew and I discussed what we felt would be best for Samuel and his love of football.  Samuel had a football plan and decided quickly if I said yes, he wanted to play tackle.  But it was ultimately our decision when we allowed him to begin tackle.  That is so much exposure to potential injury on his little body and my momma heart was nervous about the risks.  Obviously I finally relented and registered Samuel for Rams freshman tackle football.  In addition to Samuel playing, Drew was asked to help coach.  To say that we became a true football family was an understatement.

Conditioning for football kind of began in June.  It officially began in July.  Samuel missed a lot of workouts because of our summer travel including a scrimmage.  Thankfully his coach had confidence in Samuel's ability and dedication to game.  Samuel received his game jersey in August.  What a happy boy on that day!

The first game was cancelled because of weather which was a huge bummer.  So, instead of playing the first official game in August, it did not happen until after Labor Day.  Samuel played safety and occasionally linebacker on defense.  He played on the return team as a return player.  He occasionally played on the kick-off team.  He played tight end, wide receiver, and very infrequently running back on offense.  He was crazy good at blocking and running the jet sweep.

The team had awesome coaches.  It was a great group of five and between them it was a tight knit, well coached, and well prepared team. Samuel's team lost two games during the regular season.  They should have lost only one, but the boys learned early that referees don't always make the right call.  That game at Tomball was a hard loss to take.  Samuel loves to win.  Who doesn't?  But, he learned how to be a graceful loser in public this season. He worked through each loss at home. 

Between me and Emma we probably took over a thousand pictures during the season.  Despite all my reservations, it was just so much fun.  Being a huge football fan, I could not help myself when it came to cheering and supporting the team.  I wanted to document every second.

Prayer before the Super Bowl
He was co-captain for the first game and the Super Bowl

Look at that block!!
Being a safety, Samuel did a lot of running around, but did not see tons of action.  Freshman teams don't pass tons.  I got lots of shots of Samuel wanting to be in the action.  It will come with time.  He has a super solid football foundation!

The mommas and their boys....playoff victory #1
Homecoming and our first mum...crazy Texas tradition
Samuel's a hard worker.  He always wants to be better.  He watches football all weekend long to learn.  He simply loves football and all that is involved in the sport.  He never complained about having to go to practice.  He did not complain at practice.  He played hurt.  Whatever a coach asked him to do he did.  I know that sounds like I am a bragging parents and I am.  However, it was just the truth of Samuel this season.  He loved every second of his Rams experience.

So, after the regular season the playoffs began.  Win and move on or lose and the season is over.  The first playoff game was against Tomball.  Tomball was one of the two regular season loses.  It was a hard fought game, but the Rams were a well conditioned team.  They out-played Tomball in the second half and won!  Round two it was!! 

Emma came to every game except one.  She was an awesome supporter of her brother!
The second playoff game was against the Oilers.  The Rams lost to them in the regular season too.  The Oilers were undefeated and there was no way the Rams were expected to win that game.  Well, according to some people the Rams were certainly going to lose.  The Rams won!  Super Bowl bound baby and it was such a moment.  I may have cried a little.  I was shaking as the last minutes were ticking off the clock.  It was just crazy and so exciting.  Samuel had never been happier!

So, the season that began in June (kind of) and officially in July continued one more week.  The Super Bowl would be played November 20th at Klein Memorial Stadium.  That is one of the local high school stadiums.  Seriously, as an 8 year old Samuel was going to play a football game in a high school stadium that seats 8,500 people.  Obviously, that many people did not come to the game, but what an honor!  He and his team and his coaches were in the Super Bowl!

The Rams beat the Saints in the regular season pretty handily.  The Rams knew they could win.  Honestly, they were so well conditioned.  The team had good skill players.  Players who didn't quite get it earlier in the season were playing great football.  It was just clicking at the right time.  All that was left in the season was 32 minutes of football.

The Rams won!  I cried again!  Samuel got the biggest trophy of his life!  I was and still am so proud of this team and the coaches.  Just wow!!!  So much pride for Samuel and his team!

Samuel and his best friend/linebacker/running back Trey

It's hard to express how thankful I am that I gave in and signed Samuel up for tackle.  It really was me who was the hold out.  I would have hated Samuel missing this experience.  It was a once in the lifetime opportunity.  I pray he has this experience again, but at least he's had it once!  Watching daddy and son on the sidelines....no words.

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