By Alexandra Shea, Fort Jackson Public Affairs
The Fort Jackson Falcons 8 and under youth football team was crowned the 2021 Region Champions recently after winning the Pop Warner Mid South Region Championship game held in Concord, North Carolina.
“This is the first year any Fort Jackson team has advanced this far,” said Darius Lane, the teams coach and Fort Jackson Youth Sports and Fitness Director. “The Falcons are essentially the best 8 and under team out of North and South Carolina and Virginia.”
The Falcons earned the title by defeating the Costal Cowboys with a final score of 34-25.
“These kids have worked extremely hard. We had a lot of kids that had never played tackle football,” Lane said. “We started from ground zero and week by week, game by game, they steadily improved.”
While this season’s team faced challenges with new members who had not played tackle football before, they faced and overcame an annual challenge. Each year the roster changes for the Falcons. The team is made up of military children whose parents frequently move from military installation to military installation.
This annual challenge leaves Lane in a position to build a cohesive team from the ground up each season. He said building on fundamentals and continually practicing and building on those skills lead the Falcons to success.
“They were eager to learn and apply the skills and drills we worked on,” Lane said. “Words can’t express how proud I am of them.”
After winning the championship, the team hosted a congratulatory night at the Fort Jackson Century Lanes Bowling Center where Brig. Gen. Patrick R. Michaelis, post commanding general, and Post Command Sgt. Maj. Philson Tavernier met the team and congratulated them on their successful season. Each Falcon was presented a challenge coin by the command team.
“All the success they’ve had, they earned it,” Lane said. They consistently did things the right way, remained humble and won with class. They brought great joy and a sense of pride to Fort Jackson and it was an honor to coach them this season.”
Parents interested in enrolling their children in the upcoming season can contact Lane at the Youth Sports Office by calling 751-7451.