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Pioneer Varsity Football Rings the Bell

On Friday, Sep. 1, the Ann Arbor Pioneer Varsity Football team competed in their first home game of the season against the Lincoln Railsplitters. For the past two years, Lincoln has held victory over Pioneer’s head—winning 37-13 in 2021 and 40-20 in 2022. But this year, Pioneer was ready for a change.

“I’m tired of all the disrespect,” senior Michael Crossly said in his pre-game speech. “We don’t want a 21-14 win to gain a sliver of respect back. We want to blow them out and show everyone the team we really are.”

The match started with intensity and readiness on both sides. Both teams put up significant passes and runs but neither were fully able to connect to the end zone. Pioneer’s constant forward advancements were led by senior quarterback Kalan Wong and senior wide receiver Ocean Brabbs. Finally, Senior slotback Tyler Craig’s quick maneuverability placed Pioneer at the one-yard line. With the whole team pushing Lincoln players away, at the 26th-minute mark, Pioneer scored their first touchdown of the game.

“We were all so happy [scoring the first touchdown],” Wong said. “You can’t hate putting points onto the board but being there always feels so much better.”

Coming out of half-time with the score at 7-0 there was no difference in tempo from either team it was still a fight. Touchdowns kept coming for Pioneer when junior, Malek Fartha, caught a 75-yard pick-six giving Pioneer a 14-point lead.

“[It] felt surreal”, Fartha said. “Seeing all the fans going crazy but, I was not expecting my first touchdown to be on defense.”

The team’s motto for this season is ‘ring the bell.’ For every home game won, the seniors get to ring the bell placed outside of the field. With their first home game ending 21-7 for Pioneer, that’s exactly what they were able to do.

“It was great,” said Wong. “We gathered all the players and fans around the bell and everyone gets to ring it. We have 4 more home games so we hope we can continue to ring it 4 more times.”

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About the Contributor
Daniel Ging
Daniel Ging, Photography Editor
Daniel (Danny) is a senior at CHS and this is his second year on staff, first as photography editor. His favorite part about journalism is capturing life around Ann Arbor to tell a story. When he's not editing photos, he can be found skateboarding around town or hammocking and slacklining in parks around Ann Arbor. He enjoys photography as both a hobby and a passion with most recently picking up film photography and film development.

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