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Ruff Riders

By Joe Starkey



A Ruff Riders game is more than just football on a small field. So much is going on that it’s hard to keep track. Any football out of the arena belongs to the fan that gets there first and some of those scrimmages are tougher than the ones on the field.{{more}} Mark Denman of the Boys and Girls Club thought he was just invited to watch a football game.Mark Denman volunteered for bike race. Photo by Joe Starkey Then he found out that he had been “volunteered” to ride in a bike race – on the smallest bike I’ve ever seen ridden. City Manager Larry Gilley got up close and personal with some of the players as a gang tackle took several of them over the barrier and into his lap.Half time featured the Main Street Studio of Hawley with some of the cutest 3-5 year olds you ever want to watch dance. Then there was the parade of cars and folks throwing tee shirts into the stands when the game paused. Main Street Studio. Photo by Joe StarkeyMiss Abilene came out on a people mover to draw for prizes.The game? It went like too many others this year with the Ruff Riders taking a lead into the fourth quarter and then losing momentum and the game. The fans did not lose as the Rough Rider players stayed on the field to sign autographs on almost anything you can think of to sign until all the fans were satisfied and left.The player who stayed the longest signing autographs is theMiss Abilene. Photo by Joe Starkey team’s new quarterback, Robert Kent. He teaches 5th grade at E.O. Smith in Houston and flies in each week to play. His mother was a teacher for 30 years and made sure he got his education for a career and did not just make football his life. His goal in teaching and football both is to help as many kids as possible. He really likes the team and Abilene saying “Abilene fans are fantastic.” He is actively seeking a teaching position in the area so he can move here.

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The West Texas Tribune is a community-based newspaper that has been published, uninterrupted, since May 2005. Our goal is to highlight events and people throughout West Texas as an independent, locally run newspaper. We thrive on the support of our local community.

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