Players were suited up in game day attire. The field was set and ready. Little League football had officially kicked off this past Saturday as Waldron hosted the second annual Mansfield/Waldron Donation Game. It was a very hot evening, but fans from both towns showed up to sweat it out in support of their Little League football teams. The anticipation of players from both programs was as high as the temperature as they eagerly met up at Sawyer Wright stadium ready to pop some pads against someone other than their own teammates.
Each program started off with B games having their second string players face off against each other for 10 plays each. After that, the first string players would take the field for 15 minutes of “game mode” to close things out. If you had any football withdrawal sickness, this was the perfect cure for what ailed you as football at its best was put on full display.
Everything started off with the third and fourth grade teams going toe to toe in an evenly matched scrimmage. The Tigers showed their offensive speed by busting a few big plays to the outside of the Waldron defense. Waldron showed their offensive ground game was top notch as they consistently gained short yardage on all of their drives. But it was the Bulldogs that crossed the goal line on their drives pulling out the narrow victory over Mansfield in their third and fourth grade scrimmage.
Mansfield third and fourth-grade coach, David Moore, said “We came out of the Donation Game with extra experience for both of our teams and some extra money for the program. It’s hard to beat that kind of combination. Waldron is a good program for our teams to face each year and I’m very proud of how our kids played. There are still a few things we need to work on, but as a whole, our teams proved that they are going to be able to compete very well against anyone they will play this season. We’d like to give the Bulldogs a big thank you for doing this with us again this year and wish them the best of luck this season.”
The fifth and sixth grade scrimmage got fans to their feet on the very first play. The Tigers took the first snap right up the center and blasted through Waldron’s defense like a rocket, starting things off with a score. Waldron put together some good drives offensively though out the scrimmage, but the Bulldogs young team could not stop Mansfield’s high octane offense as the Tigers ran away with the scoreboard.
Waldron Co-Commissioner, Thomas B Mays, said “It’s a win, win for us when we get to scrimmage a great competitor like Mansfield. We have a lot of respect for their organization and we know they are going to bring it. This scrimmage is much more than just to see what we need to work on moving forward in our regular season play. It supports both our organizations and helps us buy much needed equipment. Our equipment had been outdated for many years, but with the help of both our community’s, we get to provide safety for our kids while playing the best sport in the world. Without everyone coming together we wouldn’t be able to accomplish what we have in such a short time. Thank you and God Bless. Rise As One!!”
In the end, both Mansfield and Waldron teams came out as winners. Each learned what works on the field and what needs to be fixed. To top it off, both programs combined gained a little over $1,200 to assist in their equipment needs. With the Mansfield/Waldron Donation Game having great back to back years of successes, there look to be many more years of this donation game to come.