Thu, 17 Jun 2021

Inaugural season concludes in Atlanta, hosted by the NAIA, NFL FLAG, Reigning Champs and the Atlanta Falcons John Deighton

The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics' inaugural women's flag football season came to a close at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday. The NAIA, NFL FLAG, Reigning Champs Experiences and the Atlanta Falcons hosted the first-ever NAIA Women's Flag Football Finals from May 5-8.

Ten programs - Cottey College (Missouri), Kansas Wesleyan University (Kansas), Keiser University (Florida), Midland University (Nebraska), Milligan University (Tennessee), Ottawa University (Kansas), St. Thomas University (Florida), University of Saint Mary (Kansas), Webber International University (Florida) and Xavier University of Louisiana (Louisiana) - descended upon Atlanta to compete in the inaugural tournament.

Atlanta Falcons President & CEO Rich McKay and Motivational Speaker and Founder of I'm Changing the Narrative Rachel Baribeau kicked off the tournament by speaking to all 10 teams at the Opening Ceremony at Silverbacks Park.

Following pool play on Thursday, all 10 teams arrived at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Friday to begin bracket play. Entering Saturday, five teams remained in the hunt to be crowned the 2021 NAIA Women's Flag champions.

Five-seeded St. Thomas University began Saturday with a victory over four-seeded Midland University to advance to the semi-finals; however, the top seeds would prevail to the finals as top-seeded Keiser University from Florida took down St. Thomas, 32-0, in the semis and two-seeded Ottawa University from Kansas defeated three-seeded Webber International University, 27-12.

In the finals, the Ottawa University Braves pulled off the upset with a one-point victory to capture the first-ever NAIA Women's Flag Championship.

NAIA Girls Flag Football High School Showcase

On Friday evening, the Atlanta Falcons, NFL FLAG and Reigning Champs Experiences (RCX) hosted more than 130 high school flag football players from across Georgia at Mercedes-Benz Stadium for a showcase with the NAIA coaches.

The Falcons are the first NFL organization to cover the costs for all participants to attend a showcase of this magnitude at no cost. Over the past several years, the Falcons organization has undertaken a larger initiative of growing the game of girls flag football.

In addition to helping sanction and expand the game in Georgia, the Falcons recently helped sanction the sport in the state of Alabama as well.

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