Inside Stories

Representative Elliott Flags Opportunity for Girls Sports

Lowell – 16th Middlesex State Representative Rodney Elliott (D-Lowell) is working to level the playing field for girls athletics through High School Flag Football.

“Commitment to inclusivity and gender equity is embodied in this exciting venture. The program will empower girls to encompass invaluable life lessons”, Elliott (D-Lowell) stated as he announced his work within the Commonwealth to implement High School Girls Flag Football club teams in the Merrimack Valley.

Recognizing that flag football now provides opportunity for collegiate scholarships, Rep Elliott added, “It is imperative that we provide the same opportunities for these lifelong tools to female athletes as we do for the male population.”

As he continues to work diligently with the Patriots Foundation and local Athletic Directors to jumpstart programs for this upcoming spring 2024 season, Elliott looks to the already eight schools in Massachusetts who competed this spring at the Gillette Stadium Championship Tournament hosted by Kraft Sports.

Girls flag football participation continues to expand throughout Massachusetts.

“Of the athletes that participated in the pilot program in 2023, over fifty percent had never played a sport at the varsity level”, Patriots community relations supervisor, Dani Callahan, stated in conversation with Rep. Elliott. Initiating the jump for more teams to participate in the spring season includes a passionate community backing Rep. Elliott. Lowell is home to the Merrimack Valley Women’s Flag Football League, I have had many constituents’ discuss the importance of flag football, recognizing that it is one of the fastest growing sports today.”

Representative Elliott hopes that this push for girl’s flag football in the Merrimack Valley inspires schools statewide to jumpstart programs in the coming years. Program Coordinator for the Patriots Girls Flag Football Program, Jeff Johnson, applauds the already 18 teams that have signed up for this upcoming season, including the local Greater Lowell Technical High School
and the Lowell Collegiate Charter School, saying “we have 18 teams total as of now, our hope is to get to 30 this year.”

GLTHS Gryphons are set to host their first tryout this week. Head Coach Randy Briere, astonished by number of girls who want to participate, says “We have over 85 girls signed up to tryout this week, this is the toughest 14 roster spots to get in the history of the school.”

Commissioner of the MVFFL and assistant coach for the Gryphons, Kayla Balamotis, said in anticipation of a remarkable season, “Girls are paving the way for flag football, the promise and momentum of this sport is great.”

Briere and Balamotis are also assisted by coach Karlee Calavritinos, who emphasized their end goal of sanctioning flag as a varsity sport, “is critical to get more teams to come together on the turf and face adversity for the future of the sport”.

More information can be accessed via email to Jeff Johnson at:

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