They’ve been so busy making semi-pro football history and expanding the Valley’s Football Hall of Fame and celebrating the 10th anniversary of the only female owner in Southern California semi-pro football history that it’s easy to overlook one very important truth about the 2019 High Desert Phoenix.
This is one heck of a football team.
Dwayne Simon, the Phoenix general manager who took the torch as the Valley’s greatest promoter when Newton Chelette retired from Antelope Valley College, was at it again Saturday.
The Quartz Hill Young Marines presented the colors in a moving pregame ceremony remembering the victims, and the heroes, of 9/11.
The United States Navy (HDP quarterback Marcus Knudsen and running back Robert Wood), the United States Marine Corps (Linebacker Sydney Morris), the United States Army (defensive lineman Howard McIntosh and linebacker Tim Mueller) and the United States Air Force (defensive back Ken Brown, tackle Lester Malone and Sam Taylor) were all capably represented.
Michael and Riley Leahy, HD Phoenix alumni and proud veterans, led all onto the field.
Oh yeah, then they played a football game.
High Desert Phoenix 44, South Bay Inferno 13.
That really was the visiting team’s nickname, not an account of the game.
The Phoenix led 30-0 at halftime.
The entire second half was played by HDP backups.
Norma Cook’s 10th anniversary celebration as owner is off to a rip-roaring start.
Her team is 3-1 in Pacific Coast Football Conference play, and 4-1 overall when factoring in the historic first-ever Monday Night semi-pro football game.
X indeed marks the spot for the lifelong Kansas City Chiefs fan who grew up in an apartment complex across the street from Arrowhead Stadium.
She was ready to give up her dream when she came across the irrepressible Simon, who has been making beautiful music for years in Hollywood.
He was part of the crew that put the foundation of Lopes Lore in place with Coach John Lowry’s 1976 CIF champions on Division Street.
It left an indelible impression.
While so many of his contemporaries couldn’t wait to blow Dodge, to bolt outta here the first chance they got, Mr. Dwayne understood the subtle atmospherics that can so often make the grass look greener on the other side.
Coach Lowry built a legend atop the meadow of manhood otherwise known as Mays Field.
Why shouldn’t others build their legends and dreams here?
The California Sharks, a San Diego powerhouse, come cruising in the next home game on Sept. 28.
The Phoenix have got it going on.