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Junior Reilly Fox suited up for her first game Saturday against Dallas Molina High School, making her the first female in history to play varsity football for R.L. Paschal High School.
Fox, the kicker for the Paschal Panthers, was first introduced to football through members of the team who had heard of her prowess as a soccer player. According to the high school’s head football coach, Matt Miracle, Fox has been consistently kicking 45 yards in practice.
“She has a strong left leg,” Miracle said. “Field goals have never been a problem for her.”
Saturday was Paschal High School’s third game, and Fox’s first.
“I’m feeling really excited,” Fox said. “I’m not nervous.”
FWISD Assistant Athletic Director Dean Pritchett attended the game against Dallas Molina as well to support Fox. Pritchett said that the team doesn’t view Fox as ‘Paschal’s first female football player,’ but rather a Panther just like everyone else.
“She’s a contributing member to a football team that’s off to a great start,” said Pritchett.
As for her relationship with her team, her gender is a non-issue.  Fox said her teammates and alumni have been accepting and supportive.
As the first female kicker to play for FWISD in 15 years, the pressure to play well is another story.
“It’s extra pressure because everyone is like, ‘Oh, well, is the girl going to make it? Can she make it?’” said Fox. “And yeah, I can.”
Paschal won against Dallas Molina 76-8.
“This is a team sport and we’re moving in a positive direction,” Miracle said. “Everybody has a role to play.”
Fox said her plans for the future mainly focus on playing D1 soccer, but she is open to kicking on a collegiate level if the opportunity arose. Next year, she hopes to be the main kicker for the team.