The Madisonville flag football team will be able to participate in the national tournament in Florida this year after an undefeated year, thanks to donations from several members of the local community.
TJ Gibbons, the team’s lead operator, said seeing the community support for the child’s hard work was amazing.
“We have community leaders like Chris [McEnaney] and Nick [Lynch] who are ready to step in and help us, so that these children’s dreams can come true,” he said.
Four teams from the Madisonville Flag Football organization qualified to play; the Seahawks in grades kindergarten through second grade, the Broncos in grades three through four, the Titans in grades five through six and the Chiefs in grades seven through eight, Gibbons said.
The registration cost is $500 per team. They were trying to raise $2,000, so all four teams could compete.
Chris McEnaney, with McEnaney Family McDonald’s, donated $1,500, which covers three teams. He said giving back to the youth of Hopkins County and Madisonville is just something he likes to do for the community.
“We’re a community-driven company, so we like to give back,” McEnaney said.
He said it was a great opportunity for the kids and he wanted them all to enjoy it.
“I sponsor them during the regular season,” McEnaney said. “I’m from Caldwell County so these towns mean a lot to me.”
The Madisonville Miners youth baseball organization is donating $500 to help flag football teams, said Nick Lynch, one of the coaches.
The youth baseball organization is a non-profit organization, and when they have extra money, they like to give back. Even though the organization is non-profit, they also try to teach their players to give back.
“We are fortunate to be able to give back to children who also need funds,” Lynch said.
Gibbons said the kids were excited to travel to Florida to play.
“They’re all excited,” he said. “After all this time indoors for COVID and the tornadoes, some of these kids have been really affected by it. I think that’s what they need to get back to feeling normal.
He said he couldn’t have done this without all the hard work and support from the team coaches put in place by Jaquez Samuel, James Moser and Raekwon Qualls.
The teams will play at the IMG Academy on July 22, 23 and 24.