On Friday August 3rd as I entered Shea Stadium preparing for the game at hand, I saw two large tables full of bakery goods, as Angeliece Dillon and her family were preparing for the Bake Sale she wished for, at her 12th birthday party. It looked as though every family who entered had some sort of treats for the sale. I watched for a few minutes as families would enter, drop off their donated goods and browse the others, for something to take home. We dropped off the items my wife, Cheryl and our Granddaughter Olivia made along with some special bracelets, a story I would like to tell.
My wife started making bracelets for the teams at the start of the week to be sold at the bake sale. Our granddaughter had spent a few days with us and wanted to help. She asked what the bracelets were for? Cheryl told her and Olivia commented as she was making her first few bracelets, “it makes my heart feel good to do this for them,” and continued. This and many other stories can be told of the effect this tragedy has had on not only the families of the victims, but an entire community and state.
DC Reign and the Denver Dynasty players gathered on their respective sidelines as the start of the game neared. David Casiano, the Mayor of Parker welcomed everyone and thanked them for their support of the teams and the benefit they are playing for, the Colorado Organization for Victims Assistance (COVA). Ms. Nakira Doss sang the National Anthem as the crowd held their hands over their hearts and gazed at the United States Flag on the north end of the field, some bowing their heads appearing to be saying a little private prayer for the victims. The Mayor thanked Ms. Doss for her singing the National Anthem and explained to the crowd what COVA was and how the bake sale, their donations and attendance would help the victims of the shooting.
The two teams gathered on the field for the opening kick-off as the Reigns’ challenge continues against the Denver Dynasty, or should I say the Denver Dynasty “Combined” team. Gazing across the field it was quite obvious, by the many different colors of helmets, the Dynasty were not playing with only their players, but players from different teams. Apparently they felt they would need the extra help and could not face the challenge with their own players. The game was very hard hitting and put both teams to challenges, as the first quarter ended with no score.
It seemed as though neither team would score before the end of the second quarter, which was seconds away. As the clock ticked down the Reign managed to score a touchdown and extra point making it 7-0 as first half ended.
The teams headed for their respective locker rooms during half time for a well-deserved break, to re-group and plan their strategies for the second half with their coaches.
The second half did not seem to be in the favor of the Reign. They made some errors and landed themselves behind the Dynasty. They managed to score 18 points against the Reign, just minutes apart. The clock continued to wind down as every minute was seemingly ticking down quicker and quicker. The Reign made attempt after attempt to score against the Dynasty and the errors continued as the third quarter passed.
The fourth quarter was equally hard for both teams, failing to score as the clock wound down to its’ last few minutes. Then it happened, the Reign managed to finally get their issues resolved enabling them to score another touchdown, but were not able to get the extra points making the score now 13-18. The Reign, just as the Dynasty did a few minutes earlier, managed to score another quick touchdown with only seconds left to play. The teams huddled and prepared for the extra point, the ball was hiked and the Reign failed yet another attempt at the extra point, but still held the lead at 19-18.
The Reign kicked off to the Dynasty, giving them a few seconds to attempt to run the ball in or get within range to score a field goal. As the clock wound down the Dynasty made a final error to seal their fate, turning the ball over, ending the game 19-18. The Reign has now defeated their second challenger of “REIGNATION.”
After the end of the game the players shook hands and gathered in the center of the field for team prayers and a few moments to share some more thoughts and feelings of the game.
In the following weeks the Reign and the Dillon family will be giving COVA approximately $500 raised at the game.
With another team defeated, the Reign have several other teams in waiting, so keep checking in for the times and dates of the games to come as “REIGNATION” continues.
For more information on the DC Reign, Non-Profit Semi-Pro Football Team, CLICK HERE or visit: www.DCReign.org