Waves of pink undulated across the bleachers as students, parents, and staff celebrated the pink out, centered around breast cancer awareness at the Groves football game against Harrison, on October 12.
Anticipating the big game against one of the Falcon’s closest rivals, wide receiver Jackson Tinsley explained the competition between the two teams.
“Two years ago we went into overtime against Harrison. It was a double overtime but we beat them. Last year we went into triple overtime, still beating them. The year before that we knocked them out of the playoffs, which was a huge upset. They are mad and want to get back at us. With 2018 being their last year having a football program before their school closes, we know they are looking to have that last stand,” Tinsley said.
Even though Harrison was ranked 25th in the state according to D-Zone, with Groves beating Harrison last year in overtime, Tinsley was confident the team would beat Harrison again. His confidence was well deserved.
Senior Joel Mitchell scored an early touchdown in the first half. A 49-yard hand off touch down by senior Demonte McCurdy in the next half widened the Groves edge over Harrison. Senior wide receiver Khalil Dawsey cinched the win, making a 92-yard kick return for a touchdown along with a passing touchdown to senior Christian Thomas, who deftly caught the ball in the endzone. Groves ultimately beat Harrison 25 to 6.
Tinsley emphasized that people coming to the game for the pink out helped build the team’s spirit.
“It is such a cool atmosphere playing in front of a bunch of people. You learn to adapt to the pressure because looking up and seeing everyone supporting you and your team is unreal,” Tinsley said.
The team was excited to support breast cancer awareness as they stood against Harrison, but the players didn’t wear pink because of what happened the last time they did.
“We didn’t do so well, and we lost by a lot. This has created a superstition that we don’t wear pink. However, watching the student section dress up looks so cool from the field,” Tinsley said.
Ending Friday's game with the prodigious score of 25-6, the Groves football team took home a 6th victory. Those in the Groves community who purchased a shirt to donate to the cause or simply wore pink to the game helped in the attempt with another victory: the growing cause to defeat breast cancer.
This Friday, October 19, Groves goes up against another longtime rival: Seaholm. That night the team hopes to see everyone cheering as they wear their camo jerseys, supporting military appreciation night. Contribute to the cause by purchasing a shirt for $10, which gets spectators into the game free. Half of all profits will go to support Lathrup Village Police Officer and Iraq veteran Dave Imber and his family as Imber is treated for terminal brain cancer.