Title Town

Mike Moore photos
Trophy held high, the fifth grade Vikings celebrate as a team after winning a close battle against the Bushwell Lions during the Casper Midget Football Association (CMFA) Championship in Glenrock Oct. 22. This was the first time in 51 CMFA seasons the championships were held in Glenrock, with both the Vikings and the sixth grade Ravens taking full advantage to give the hometown crowds a pair of championship titles.

Mike Moore mike@glenrockind.com


“I just wish my mom, Mary Kay (Kindt), could have seen these boys play and the support this town has given them,” Vikings head coach Jake Federer said once he came down from the emotional high from the previous night. At the end of the game, he could only say his feelings were “unexplainable.”
That reflection might have been an understatement even the next morning.
His mother, after all, was the epitome of a Glenrock sports fan, and the founder of Herder Pride, a Facebook group that reaches nearly every corner of this small tight-knit community. Her sudden death in 2017 sent shock waves through all of east-central Wyoming.
What happened on the gridiron of Glenrock High School’s artificial turf field the night of Tuesday, Oct. 22, was significant for Kindt’s family . . . and everyone else in Glenrock. Not only was it the first time in the history of the Casper Midget Football Association’s 51-year existence that the championships were held outside of Casper, but both title games featured their hometown teams.
Then, both teams won their respective league titles. Jubilation ensued on – and off – the field.
The young football athletes had a lot to prove before the expansive stands of fans.
Thinking back to Mary Kay and her passion for this community, Federer couldn’t help but feel proud of what was accomplished that night.
“Starting the Herder Pride page and everything, she would have been so proud of the boys and the entire community for how much purple was at the game,” he said.
None of this would have even happened if it weren’t for kind hearts all around.
Glenrock High School administrators and high school football head coach Ryan Collier (who helps coach the younger teams, too) could’ve simply said “no” when approached and asked if the games could be held at the high school field after inclement weather postponed the initial championships slated to take place at Kelly Walsh High School Oct. 20.
Due to both Kelly Walsh and Natrona County High School fields being occupied Tuesday, officials turned to Glenrock for help. The community stepped up.
It didn’t come without a cost, though.
The high school Herders use the field for practice, and the games would cut into the team’s after-school practice by what the coach estimated to be roughly an hour.
Instead of hesitation, Collier welcomed the championships with open arms. Football, after all, is his love. Regardless of the level.
“They asked if we would be willing, and I said ‘Of course we would,’” Collier said as he stood along the sidelines watching the Vikings take on the Bushwell Lions in the opening game. “We normally (practice) until 6 or 6:30, so about an hour of practice. It’s not a big deal.”
For Collier, this was also a great opportunity for Glenrock to display the facilities they have, which he said are some of the best in the state.
“It’s good for our kids and their kids to play on a field like this,” he reflected.
Simply having the games in front of the hometown crowds was a big deal. What happened next was the icing on the cake.
First, the fifth grade Vikings were matched against the Bushwell Lions. A defensive battle throughout, the Vikings won the hard-fought match up 7-0 after Gabe Federer – Mary Kay’s grandson and the son of Carl Federer, also a coach – scored the only touchdown of the game. 
As the final play ticked off the scoreboard, uncle Jake hoisted his nephew high in the air as players swarmed the coach for a collective celebration.
After posing for team photos with the traveling trophy that is now in their possession, all Jake could say in the whirlwind was that his feelings were “unexplainable.”
Matters only intensified as the sixth grade Ravens took the field next to take on the True Oil Steelers of Casper. Despite the Steelers securing an early first half lead of 6-0, the Ravens didn’t hang their heads. They eventually turned the tide by tying the game up 6-6 late in the game.
An important fumble recovery gave the Ravens possession deep in Steeler territory, with Brady Dona running in a touchdown  on a “47 reverse” play with only two plays remaining.
Coaches, athletes and Glenrock fans flew into a frenzy. Many were screaming. Some raced onto the field. Most jumped up and down.
As coach Jim Dona celebrated midfield, fellow coach Colter Felton rushed behind him with a cooler full of water, dousing Jim as he hoisted player Crais Fleck into the air.
“It’s pretty emotional,” Jim said, standing midfield completely soaked in 48 degree weather. “Glenrock loves football and these kids.”
Considering the Ravens are executing the high school’s famed double-wing offense, he said this was a great way for Herder fans to get an early view of future athletes.
“They got a lot of work to do, but the future is bright,” he said.


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