Wednesday, June 28, 2017
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Andrea 'Dre' Hollingsworth makes most of opportunity with Carson Bobcats

2017 Andrea Hollingsowrth 2Andrea 'Dre' Hollingsworth just completed her first season with the Carson Bobcats who play in the Independent Women's Football League (IWFL). Her team lost to Utah Falconz, 26-0 when the game was stopped in the second quarter due to heat in the first-round of the playoffs.

Hollingsworth is one of the four Deaf women known to be playing semi-pro football this year. The other three are LeAnn Avalos (Corpus Christi Divas), Cassie Cantu and Erika Mendiola who play for the South Texas Generals.

Jose Amador recently sat down with Andrea 'Dre' Hollingsworth for a videophone interview before her team traveled to Utah for the playoffs.

Jose: Hello. I would like to thank you for your time to interview with me.

Andrea: Hello. I am honored to be here with you.

Jose: What is your name? And where are you from?

Andrea: My name is Andrea Hollingsworth and I am from Los Angeles, California.

Jose: Wow, I can’t spell your last name. It’s a long last name.

2017 Andrea Hollingsworth 1Andrea: (laughing) yes.

Jose: Who are you playing for?

Andrea: Carson Bobcats in Los Angeles.

Jose: What is your position?

Andrea: Linebacker and defensive end.

Jose: What made you decide to join women football league?

Andrea: It was an opportunity for me to join football team and my feeling is that it’s a great experience being a role model. I am showing the Deaf community that I can play football. I want to encourage more Deaf female players to join women football league.

Jose: What is your Carson Bobcats record?

Andrea: 6-3.

Jose: I see your upcoming game against undefeated Utah Falconz this Saturday in the 1st-round playoffs. The Falconz won the 2016 IWFL Championship. What is your game plan?

Andrea: Well, my plan game is try to play best defense against their offense and they always score high against other teams. I hope my team is ready to take a challenge and keep the score close instead of a shutout like 50-0. She said our team was the only one to score high against them but lost in a regular season game.

Jose: What is your experience when you play defense?

Andrea: Wow, this is difficult to tell you. The first game, I didn’t play much because of no communication with the coaches and I tried to learn how to play defense. Next game, my coaches started to learn sign language a little and try to communicate with me during defense. I’m glad I can play a lot.

Jose: Yes, you are not the only one, there are other Deaf female players from Texas and they do have communication problems with their coaches too. Did you know they play in Texas?

Andrea: I didn’t know. I thought there was one player from Washington D.C.

Jose: Oh yeah, her name is Tasha Lemke and she moved to Austin.

Andrea: Oh wow.

Jose: There are two Deaf players and one SODA playing for the South Texas Generals and one Deaf player is playing for Corpus Christi Divas. They did play against each other earlier this season. Like Utah Falconz, a powerhouse from San Antonio, Texas Legacy is now 7-0 and are undefeated champions for the past three years. I think Houston Texas Lady Jaguars (5-1) is the only team that can defeat San Antonio Texas Legacy in the championship game. But the South Texas Generals are improving a lot and they can take a challenge against the Houston Texas Lady Jaguars before advancing in the championship game.

Andrea: Oh I always wanted to play against other Deaf women. Maybe one day. This is a cool story about the San Antonio Texas Legacy. Our opponent is the Utah Falconz. This is not an easy team to defeat but we will do our best.

Jose: I believe one Deaf player will be selected to the All-Star game. Her name is Cassie Cantu. She is good and is in her first year with the Generals. Does your league have an All-Star game?

Andrea: Yes, they do have an All-Star game. I hope to play in an All-Star game one day.

Jose: Is that a 11-woman or 8-woman football in your league? They are playing for 8-woman league.

Andrea: 11-woman.

Jose: 8-woman team have 30 players and your 11-woman have 50 or something?

Andrea: Yes, between 40-50 players.

Jose: Will you return and play next year? Andrea: Yes for sure! I am addicted to playing football and cross-fit. I love both.

Jose: What is your purpose for fund raising?

Andrea: When we found out that we will be playing against Utah Falconz in the playoffs. We are excited but travel expense is not easy because we live in California and our living expense is too high. We are trying to work on our fundraising. We need to earn money to pay for transportation, hotel and food. We will drive to Utah for 11 hours on Friday. I hope anyone can donate or support our team.

Jose: I will share your link and spread the word. Wish you good luck this Saturday!

Andrea: Thank you! And thank you for having me today.

Carson Bobcats Playoff Fundraiser

Carson Bobcats Team Website

SportsMX video feature on Tasha Lemke with the DC Divas

Photos courtesy of Andrea Hollingsworth.

Latest on Deaf women in semi-pro football

By Jose Amador

Independent Women's Football League (IWFL)

Carson BobcatsUtah Falconz 26 Carson Bobcats 0

Andrea "Dre" Hollingsworth and her Carson Bobcats lost to powerhouse Utah Falconz, 26-0 due to the heat wave and the game was stopped in the second quarter. The Bobcats’ season is finished with the first-round playoff loss.

Icon Women's Football League (IWFL)

Corpus Christi DivasHarlingen Honeys 28 Corpus Christi Divas 25

LeAnn Avalos and her Corpus Christi Divas suffered a loss to Harlingen Honeys, 28-25 which eliminated the team from playoff contention. Avalos did not play due to an injury. The Divas’ season is complete.

South Texas GeneralsHouston Texas Lady Jaguars 32 South Texas Generals 6

South Texas Generals’ Cassie Cantu and Erika Mendiola lost Houston Texas Lady Jaguars, 32-6. The loss caused the South Texas Generals to fall to a #4 seed for the playoffs. They will face the #1 seed, San Antonio Texas Legacy in the playoffs. Houston Texas Lady Jaguars have the number 2 seed and will play against Harlingen Honeys, #3 seed.

Deaf Falcons player overcomes obstacles to showcase gift

By Anthony Amey

Atlanta FalconsFLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. - Most of us don't even pay full attention to the many distinct sounds we so often have the chance to enjoy when we attend or watch a football game.

But imagine if you could not hear the sound of the crowd, or the whistles from the officials or even the music after a big hit or a turnover or a touchdown.

That's what Falcons fullback Derrick Coleman experiences every time he steps on the field.

Read more & view video: http://www.wsbtv.com/sports/deaf-falcons-player-overcomes-obstacles-to-showcase-gift/530977656

Source: WSB-TV

Avalos' Divas win & Generals fall to powerhouse

By Jose Amador

Corpus Christi DivasCorpus Christi Divas 47 Austin Assassins 40

Corpus Christi Divas escaped with a close win by a score of 47-40 against Austin Assassins. The Divas fought and defense held the newcomer Assassins on the last drive of the game. The Divas improved to 2-1 while Assassins fell to 0-3.

The Divas' #32-LeAnn Avalos made two solo and one assisted tackles.

Next game: Corpus Christi Divas host the Texas Lady Jaguars (2-1) from Houston.

South Texas GeneralsTexas Legacy 48 South Texas Generals 18

The South Texas Generals came to San Antonio and faced powerhouse Texas Legacy. The Generals didn't play well and lost by a score of 48-18. The
Generals fell to 1-2 while the Legacy stays undefeated, 3-0.

The Generals' #1-Cassie Cantu's statement: “Thank you for coming and support my team and being our awesome fans! Unfortunately, we lost, 48-18. We had many penalties and bad calls but we did our best.”

Next game: The Generals host Corpus Christi Storm (2-1).

South Texas Generals & Corpus Christi Divas meet in game featuring Deaf players

Last Saturday, May 13th, the South Texas Generals and Corpus Christi Divas who play in the Icon Women’s Football Association (IWFA), a semipro league featured Deaf players on both teams.

The South Texas Generals have Erika Mendiola playing wide receiver and cornerback while Cassie Cantu is a defensive back. Corpus Christi Divas has LeAnn Avalos as a cornerback.

The recap of the game was provided by Jose Amador.

South Texas Generals defeated Corpus Christi Divas, 52-31. The Generals improved to 1-1 while the Divas fell to 1-1.

South Texas Generals' #1 Cassie Cantu made three solo tackles, one assist tackle, fumble recovery for 10 yards, and another fumble recovery returned for a touchdown.

South Texas Generals' #8 Erika Mendiola made two solo tackles. She played with a shoulder injury.

Corpus Christi Divas' #32 LeAnn Avalos made two assist tackles in the first half. She didn't play the second half due to coach's decision.

CCD  6-13-0-12 = 31
STG 12-20-6-14 = 52

Next game: South Texas Generals travel to 3-time IWFA Champion Texas Legacy (2-0) at San Antonio. Corpus Christi Divas host the Austin Assassins (0-2).

2017 Deaf Women Pro Football
Left to right: Erika Mendiola, LeAnn Avalos, Cassie Cantu (Photo credit - Jose Amador)

'America's Deaf Team' Tackles Identity Politics

By Matthew Davis

GallaudetThe homecoming game falls on a brilliant, unseasonably warm Saturday afternoon in late October 2016. The sun streams through the multicolored leaves of oak trees and dapples thousands of alumni and fans in patches of light and shade. Pop-up booths have been erected behind the football stadium: The Class of 2019 is selling crepes; the Class of 1992 is selling t-shirts; writers for the student newspaper, The Buff and Blue, are hawking the latest issue.

Read more: https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2017/05/americas-deaf-team-tackles-identity-politics/525945/

The Atlantic

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