TYLER (KYTX) - The Grace Community School drumline knows all about rhythm. Their cheerleaders can get any crowd pumped up.
This Tuesday night, they're cheering for their own football team. And, it may surprise you, but they're also cheering on their competition.
"It's not about us at all, it's about them," said Andrew McCarty, Grace football player.
These boys in the red jerseys are from the Azleway Boys Ranch in Tyler.
"Some of the young men have come from pretty tough situations," said Coach Mike Maddox.
But tonight, their past is not an issue on the football field.
"Family actually is what it feels like to me, it's like everybody gets together and plays a sport like this...it feels like I'm with my family again," Chrishawn See, Azleway student.
On this gridiron, the score doesn't matter. Everyone celebrates, no matter who scores.
"We're letting them have competition, but making them feel good about themselves at the same time," said Lucas Nickel, Grace football player.
A feeling that some of these boys may only experience once in their lifetime.
"It's been awhile since I played football and I'm really enjoying it tonight," said See.
A feeling of scoring that winning touchdown.
A feeling of forgetting about their troubles for at least one night.
A feeling that as they suit up for the crazy game of life that's ahead of them, there's always someone standing on the sidelines cheering them on.
After the game, the coaches, football players, and Azleway boys had devotion and dinner together.
Grace Community School and church also gave the boys Bibles to take home.
This August, at the SportTyler East Texas Kick-Off Luncheon, Coach Maddox and the entire
football team were awarded the East Texas Team Community Service Award for the development of this event.