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Child, Youth and School Services bring back tackle football – FMWRC – US Army – 100921
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PHOTO CAPTION: Coach Peter Witmer describes a play to his Wiesbaden players. (Photo by Karl Weisel, USAG Wiesbaden, cleared for public release, not for commercial use, attribution requested.)

Child, Youth and School Services bring back tackle football

Sep 21, 2010

By Darline Goyea (USAG Wiesbaden)

WIESBADEN, Germany – Hut one. Hut two.

Tackle football has returned to Child, Youth and School Services after a more than 10-year absence.

After several requests from the community, through Youth Sports, CYSS made it happen.

Expenses, equipment and other logistics were hurdles to bringing the sport back to the Wiesbaden community, but those challenges have been overcome.

"The families who came in from the States wanted it here," said Peter Witmer, Wiesbaden school liaison officer, who is coaching the 12-14-year-old players who call themselves the Warriors. "Parents are absolutely thrilled we have it here."

Witmer, who has coached a combination of adult and youth sports, said it’s all about the children.

"My passion has been for tackle football, where I’ve coached for nine seasons." Every two-hour practice takes advanced preparation and planning, before and after practice reviews, to help the players improve their game, he said.

The mixture of veterans and neophytes brings balance to the team. It can also improve academics, said Witmer. "If the kids really want to play, they’ll make sure their grades are up."

"Team moms" – provide much needed volunteer support.

Sandra Salvo said she enjoys her position as team mom – helping by sending emails of schedule changes, organizing team photos, snack schedules and bus duty. Salvo also shows support for her 13-year-old son, Sam, who plays offense and defense. "The kids really love it," said Salvo. Tomekia Williams, a team mom whose 13-year-old son, Daniel, plays nose tackle and left guard, also volunteers as team mom for her youngest son, David, who plays on the bantam team for 9-11-year-olds. "Life is busy, but we make the sacrifices so our kids can have normalcy like in the States," she said.

Mannheim, Baumholder, Heidelberg, Stuttgart, to name a few, are surrounding communities with youth sports tackle football teams which make up the league. Each garrison will host a game for a total of seven games. The Warriors opened their season in Mannheim Sept. 11 with a 12-0 loss to a team from Kaiserslautern.

East and West leading teams play for the season championship in Bamberg on Nov. 13.

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