California Lineman Eriana Pula Becomes First Girl To Earn Invite to All Star Game

Compton, California high school senior Eriana Pula made history this past week becoming the first girl ever to be selected to play in the California Classic All Star Game in Pomona, California in January 2017.

The 5 foot 10, 250 pound offensive guard and defensive tackle from Centennial High School in Compton was selected by evaluators who were not aware of her gender.

Kevin Steele scouted her for Plays and Grades, the organization which runs the all-star game:

“I did not know when I scouted her that she was a girl. I didn’t see that. I did not know that. She’s a good player.”

She did her job so well that centers didn’t know they were blocking against a girl until after the game when they shook hands.

She said one opponent told her, ‘Oh, man, you’re a beast.'”

Needless to say, Lupa was happy by her selection. Besides being an all star football player, she is also student body president and has a 4.3 GPA. As she said to ABC7 Los Angeles:

“I’m truly blessed to have this opportunity to play football with the all-stars and a bunch of boys.”

What makes her selection even more impressive is that Southern California is home to some of the most competitive high school football in the country.

Girls continue to make an increasingly large impact on the sport of football, and Pula is a great reminder that girls can both participate and enjoy success in football.

Pula only started playing football two years ago and at the time her mother Emo Pula, a teacher at the school, was a little worried:

“Of course I was always worried but I knew with her skills and athleticism I knew she could do well,” she said.

Pula says being accepted by her high school football team was a bit challenging at first.

“A lot of people doubted it but once they saw I could do it, it was like, put her in.”

 

AFI
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