The start of every football season always includes the addition of a few new players. An addition to this year’s roster includes senior Olivia Brawley.
Brawley joined this year’s team as the varsity kicker as she has experience kicking in soccer. Brawley said she feels less pressure than what most people might think, considering she is the only girl on the team. Her four years as a varsity soccer starter make her feel more prepared to succeed at a varsity football level.
Brawley said, “Honestly, I view it as any other sport I have played before. It is different being the only girl, but it doesn’t make me any more nervous.”
For some teams, having a girl on the team could cause a distraction. However, Brawley is well-liked by many and has played many different sports throughout her athletic career. These include: soccer, basketball, track, and now football.
“I believe having a girl on the team isn’t a distraction because we treat her as if she is one of the guys. She cracks jokes about fellow teammates and fits in very well with us all,” senior Tanner Allen, cornerback, said.
One of the many challenges Brawley will face is trying to play two fall sports at the same time. Juggling two practices a day, plus soccer games during the school week will definitely test her.
“First, every day I go to football after school. I stay there until I have finished what I need to do, and then I go straight to soccer. The most challenging thing for me will be having a bunch of games during the week. We usually have 2-3 soccer games a week and adding that onto football will be the most challenging part for me,” Brawley said.
An important aspect of every successful sports team is having good team chemistry and trust between each and every player. Brawley’s fellow teammates have no doubt that she will have a successful season and help the team win.
“I think Brawley will have a very positive impact on the team because of how much we have struggled with consistency at kicking extra points and field goals. I definitely believe she’ll give us a pretty solid chance to win any game during crunch time this year because we all watch her drill field goals at practice all the time,” Allen said.
Having confidence as a kicker is crucial.
“Obviously, if she can make her kicks, the trust from all of her teammates will skyrise, but I feel like most of the team already trusts her to go make an important kick if she is called upon,” senior Collin Campbell, center said.