WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - The West Lafayette football team beat Lewis Cass 56-8 Friday night to move to 2-0 on the season. But for one family, one of those touchdowns meant far more than just six points.
Jack Folkers, a sophomore wide receiver on the Red Devil football team, scored his first varsity touchdown Friday after losing his father, John, to cancer earlier in the week.
"It was definitely a long, hard struggle," Folkers said. "He fought hard the whole time."
Folkers and his family buried his father just hours before kickoff. A football fan, Folkers said his father would have wanted him on the field playing. However, since he missed school on Friday, he didn't know if it would be allowed.
"Maybe, some rules, I wouldn't be able to play," said Folkers. "I was just thrilled to have the opportunity to play. My coaches are great, I'm just glad they let me play. I'm very thankful for that."
"We knew he would be playing," said Head Coach Shane Fry. "He plays anyway, it's not like we had to throw him in the game. So, he's rotating in there. We thought, 'If this works out and he gets a touchdown on this night, that'd be really cool.'"
Not to overshadow Folkers, Senior Quarterback Parker Ronchetto threw a total of five touchdowns Friday, but the one to number 81 is unforgettable.
"You know, it's tough," Ronchetto said. "I can't imagine what he's going through. I couldn't imagine losing my father at this age. That will probably be one of my most memorable moments in, not only my high school football career, but just my sports career in general."
"Actually, I messed up on one attempt, I ran the wrong route," said Folkers. "But, the second time I got it right and that was a good feeling because I knew we were trying to get me to score."
It's a play that Folkers and Ronchetto can run through easily three days after their ultimate connection, but a moment in time that will live on forever.
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