OXNARD, Calif.-The inaugural season of Flag Football had some poignant moments for the Rio Mesa Spartans.
Two members of the small, but scrappy team, are seniors and took part in senior night traditions .
They will never forget their season highlights including the first Coastal Clash Tournament.
Teams from up and down the coast shared the field.
Rio Mesa tasted victory after victory.
It took time to dawn on them that they are making history.
2023 was the first year flag football was recognized in the region by the California Interscholastic Federation known as CIF.
"It is the inaugural season for everyone even the refs so we are going to have some ups and down all the teams are doing great Rio Mesa just beat Simi Valley so congratulations to them," said State Instructional Chair Greg Truez.
Alicia Ramos, one of their mentors and coaches, played on a women's pro football team in Las Vegas.
Coaches said the rules are still evolving.
Rio Mesa was 5-2 going into the final game of the season on home turf.
They beat all their Ventura County rivals but not the teams from neighboring Santa Barbara County.
Coaches said it isn't an even playing field yet when it comes to equipment such as belts.
"Ours are little clips, the other ones, they are super glue on there, grab with two hands I think they should all be the same," said Ramos.
They made some touchdowns as the sun set on their season, but the score didn’t go their way against the Dos Pueblos Chargers.
They will try to shake it off as Taylor Swift might say.
With talk about flag football becoming an Olympic sport by la 2028 anything could happen.
Rio Mesa High School Head Coach agrees. "I think it is going to blow up, we are going to see more school and levels next year like JV and Varsity," said Gregorchuk.
So far, there are not enough teams to qualify for a CIF champions, but that will happen when 40 percent of the schools embrace flag football.
Your News Channel will have more on this story tonight on the news.