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By Whitney Wyatt/The Red River Sun—
CHILDRESS – ‘How ‘Bout Them Lil Cats!’
The first year of the Childress Youth Recreational League (CYRL) Lil Cats tackle football and cheer came to an end at Dallas Cowboys AT&T Stadium on Sunday, Nov. 22.
“It was the biggest day of my life,” said Avian Lizama, who played on the CYRL 3rd and 4th grade team. “It was always my dream and my dad’s to be on the Dallas Cowboys field. I felt awesome.”
The Childress Lil Cats 3rd and 4th grade team and 5th and 6th grade team played in the Red Zone Games, where the Lil Cats cheerleaders cheered for them.
“It was amazing and the best thing that ever happened,” said Klinton Leatherwood, who played on the 3rd and 4th grade team.
The Red Zone Games consisted of teams from smaller towns in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas and other states, according to the Red Zone Games website. While Jordan Williams and Jacob Rodriguez thought it was exciting and cool to play on the same field as the Cowboys, Bryan Espino said, “Playing in the Cowboys Stadium was a dream come true.”
The 5th and 6th grade team tied their first game against Springfield, Mo., beat Mustang, Okla., lost by one touchdown to Stigler, Okla. and lost by a two-point conversion to
to Copperas Cove, Texas.
Keagan Sides said it was a “once in a lifetime experience.”
The 3rd and 4th grade team played Comfort, Stigler, Okla, Bentonville, Ark. and Rogers, Ark. Davian Salazar, Creedan Bell and Giovanni Gonzales all said it was exciting, and Ian Maldonado described playing as “awesome, cool, amazing and fun.”
The Lil Cats cheerleaders also performed a 50-yard line routine and cheered from the same sidelines the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders perform.
“Loved cheering in front of lots of people,” said Brianalise Espino. “It was an amazing experience.”
An experience Bryson Leatherwood said boosted their confidence. For Taylor Garcia, he said playing at Dallas Cowboys AT&T Stadium made all of the long practices worth it.