The Texas School for the Deaf football team won its first state championship Friday night.
The school defeated Veritas Academy of Austin, 63-32, in the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS) Division I six-man state title game.
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The school had moved to the six-man game due to a bunch of football players who live outside Austin moving to online learning because of the coronavirus pandemic, which drastically cut down the school’s football roster.
John Moore, the school’s football and basketball coach, told the Austin American-Statesman before the game that winning a championship would be really important.
“To win a state championship would be huge,” Moore told the newspaper. “To win during a season like this, where every single football program in the country has been affected by COVID-19, would be outstanding. Knowing our boys put in the extra work on the field and off the field to stay safe really makes my staff and I proud.”
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All players and coaches on the football team are deaf and they use a giant drum to coordinate plays.
“Football is football,” Moore added. “We have the same obstacles as every other football team. If anything, with the requirement of masks due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s made communication a bit more difficult.”
The Texas School for the Deaf was 6-3 coming into the game and had to face an undefeated opponent in Veritas.
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The school itself has been around since 1857 and is one of the oldest public schools in Texas.