Blairsville powder puff

Blairsville High School seniors celebrated their championship victory in the annual powder-puff game. Team members including, clockwise from left, Kourtney Horchar, Madison Kennedy-Citeroni, Allison Oswald, Blake Tonkin, Jillian Barger, Makayla Whitfield, Sidney McCully, Hanna Alamo and Paige Palmer celebrated with teacher Laura Thompson after their victory. (Kim Alamo/Blairsville High School)

Passions were high during the championship game, boiling over to a point that health and physical education teacher Laura Thompson paused the game to remind the players that the powder-puff competition is intended to be a friendly fundraiser.

After the final game, senior coach Ryan Wilkins commented on his team’s success: “I don’t think our girls worked hard, I know they worked hard. They played very well tonight; they’re going to enjoy this win, as they should.”

The first game of the night was between the sophomores and freshmen, ending with an underdog victory for the freshmen. Immediately after, the juniors and seniors faced off for a high-stakes opportunity to earn the remaining slot in the championship game. The seniors won that game in a sweeping score of 38-0.

The championship game came last, and was plagued with torrents of rain and puddles of mud on the field. Nevertheless, the seniors won in a history-making overtime game, with a final score of 6-0.

Bernie Pynos, a longtime member of the Blairsville community, was the official game announcer of the evening. His daughter, Isabel Pynos, competed on the freshman team.

“I had such a fun time. My teammates did too. Though things got heated at times, it’s all part of the competition and the game,” she said. “I always aim high and set high standards so I was hoping that we could win the whole thing; we could’ve.” She also expressed how proud of her dad she was, stating that she received many positive comments about his announcing skills.

In the days leading up to the competition on Wednesday, the four teams prepared and practiced drills and plays.

Although all of the girls competing on the field is the main event of the night, on the sidelines are people equally as important — the coaches. Varsity football players volunteer to help lead the girls each year.