Yes, you read that headline properly. First, though, I have to brag about my St. Louis Blues. Not only are we in the playoffs but with our 1-0 win over the Colorado Avalanche, we actually clinched the 6th seed in the playoffs. I’m still getting used to saying “Blues” and “playoffs” in the same sentence. I couldn’t watch the playoff clinching game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, but I got updates while eating dinner at the Cheesecake Factory on the Plaza in Kansas City. I tried my hardest to contain my joy, but it didn’t work too well. Playoffs will do that. Now, onto the crux of this post.
This Easter weekend I went with my girlfriend, Jen, to Kansas City to visit her family. While we were looking for things to do on Saturday, Jen’s mother told us about an email she’d received during the week inviting her out to see the Kansas City Tribe take on the Minnesota Vixen. Now, like most of you, I had no idea that Women’s Professional Football existed. It does. You can even check out the website here.
There are some times in life that an opportunity comes along and drops right into your lap. It happened when I was in Seattle and found myself in an old airport hangar watching the Rat City Rollergirls take on the Rose City Rollers. To this day, that was one of the weirdest things I have ever witnessed in my life. If you like strange, underground events with lots of tattooed people, roller derby is your thing.
The opportunity arose when I was in Australia and had the chance to see an international soccer match. You just never know what’s going to happen at things like this.
Now, I’m not going to compare Women’s Professional Football to either of those instances, because each one was significantly different, but this was an experience nonetheless. By the time the game rolled around I had convinced Jen, her mother and two of her brothers to come watch as well. I don’t think anyone really knew what to expect, but we were all interested. Those of us who were of age finished off a bottle of wine and headed out, you know, in case it was boring.
The game itself took place at Center High School in Kansas City and there were more people there than I expected. I’m not good at estimating crowds, but there was at least a couple hundred people in the stands. I’d show the pictures I took, but my camera has run out of battery. Instead, you’ll just have to make do with my description.
The first thing I noticed after walking past the Back Yard Burgers grill was that there was a live band on the track surrounding the field. It was a modest, three piece band, but they got the crowd going by playing some guitar riff and then yelling “Go Tribe, Go!” About half the crowd really got into this. Naturally, I was one of them.
The second thing I noticed was the amount of jerseys that were scattered throughout the stands. I’m guessing they were family members of the players so that’s how they acquired them, but still, there were a bunch. I even saw a few Vixen jerseys, which were very similar to the red Tampa Bay Buccaneers jerseys. People were passionate about their respective team.
The Vixen were easily the larger of the two teams. It seemed as if the majority of their players could rotate positions pretty easily and have no effect. The Tribe, on the other hand had a few small girls and a few behemoths on the line. That really proved to be the difference in the game since the Vixen rarely caught up with the Tribe’s speedy wideouts. I can’t believe I just spent that much time breaking down a women’s football game. The QB for the Tribe actually did have a pretty good arm and there were a couple of decent hits. The level of play was equivalent to that of a mid-level High School game, right down to the inability to kick field goals.
During halftime they held an Easter Egg Hunt, with the person who found the special Tribe egg getting an autographed team football. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t allow me to participate or this story would be a whole lot more entertaining.
Instead, we watched the little kids run around looking for eggs and then headed for the exit. The Tribe were leading 32-0 and the temperature was dropping. A quick check of the website tells me that the Tribe won 45-8. So overall, nothing spectacular really happened at my first women’s tackle football game, but for something that I didn’t know existed the day before, it was a pretty fun time. Also, the rock band thing at a football game was actually pretty neat. But that may have been the win talking.