Bishop Brady girls’ soccer captain is kicking it on the football field

  • Bishop Brady senior Will Verdi cheers for the Giants during their football game against Franklin on Sept. 28. Over his shoulder is a student-made sign about Brady’s kicker, senior Adrienne Brummett.

  • Bishop Brady’s Adrienne Brummett kicks an extra point during last weekend’s game against Franklin at Memorial Field. RICH MIYARA photos / N.H. Sports Photography

  • Bishop Brady’s Adrienne Brummett kicks for the Giants at the football game against Franklin on Sept. 28. RICH MIYARA/ 

  • Bishop Brady’s Adrienne Brummett kicks for the Giants at the football game against Franklin on Sept. 28. Rich Miyara—

  • Bishop Brady’s Adrienne Brummett kicks for the Giants at the football game against Franklin on Sept. 28. Rich Miyara—

Monitor staff
Published: 10/3/2019 4:54:13 PM

Adrienne Brummett is a senior captain for the Bishop Brady girls’ soccer team, and when she’s on the field, Brummett looks the part – confident, poised, capable. But when she was heading to a game in Raymond on Sept. 20, Brummett was none of those things.

“I was freaking out on the bus ride over there,” Brummett said. “They were all telling me I was going to be fine, but I was like really freaking out.”

Here’s the catch – that bus was headed to a football game in Raymond, where Brummett was going to make her debut as the kicker for Brady’s football team.

Her new teammates turned out to be right. The Giants lost, 22-7, but Brummett was fine as she connected on her only PAT attempt. In Brady’s next game, Brummett went 3-for-5 booting PATs in a 33-22 win against rival Franklin last Saturday night to improve to 3-1.

“It comes naturally to her,” Brady football coach Jermaine McKenzie said. “It’s been easy for her. We were just talking the other day about how we’ve got to see how far she can kick a field goal in a game. Right now we have her at about 35, 40 yards.”

The two PAT misses against Franklin weren’t Brummett’s fault. The first was a low snap that she never even swung her foot at, and the other was blocked by a gang of Golden Tornadoes who almost trampled Brummett in the process.

“That was scary,” she said. “In the first game, I only kicked one PAT and I made it, so I was never in any danger. I didn’t even think about it getting blocked; we had never even talked about it.

“And then the first one (against Franklin) was a bad snap. And I was like, ‘Oh, no,’ and I just backed out of it. And the one that got blocked I kind of just stood there registering what was happening, and I was like, ‘Oh crap, should I move?’ And then I didn’t know if it was a live ball. I mean, I don’t know the rules of football.”

Brady girls’ soccer coach Andrew Mattarazzo was at Memorial Field for the Franklin game, and he had his own “Oh crap” moment during the blocked PAT.

“They were a little close to her there, a little too close,” Mattarazzo said. “But she’s a tough kid, and if anybody from our team was going to do it, it would be her, and I was open to it. Our football coach is a good guy and I have faith that he’ll protect her and do it the right way. And she’s only going to kick extra points and field goals, no kickoffs or punts or anything like that.”

Brummett’s new role comes amid a national discussion centered around Carli Lloyd, a member of the women’s World Cup winning team that raised eyebrows with videos of her booting long-distance field goals. Many openly wonder whether Lloyd is good enough to play in the NFL.

More locally, Brummett’s kicking duties are indeed impressive, but she isn’t the first.

There are other girls playing football in New Hampshire. Montana Pouliot is a senior lineman on the Bow High football team. Oceanne Skoog was a First Team Division IV offensive lineman for Newfound last year. And having a soccer-playing girl also kick footballs in the fall is nothing new for Brady – Sarah Plourde did the same thing for the Giants in 2014 and 2015.

Plourde paved the way for Bryce Johnson, who was a goalie for the boys’ soccer team and then joined the football team as a wide receiver in 2017 because Brady’s football numbers were down. Last year, Tom Daly was a senior captain for the Giants’ boys’ soccer team and kicked for the football team.

“We have so many multi-sport athletes at our school, and when we have had kids playing two sports in one season, we see the benefit for the teams in terms of numbers, and the benefits for the kids, who are able to try new things and expand their horizons,” Brady Athletic Director Annie Alosa said. “Adrienne doing it is awesome. She’s a gamer, she’s competitive and she didn’t even hesitate when we first talked about it. She had already scored a lot of goals from 30 yards out, and we figured it would be an easy transition for her.”

They figured right. Brummett’s leg strength and technique on the soccer pitch transitioned smoothly to the gridiron.

“You kick it the same, but it’s so different when people are running at you,” Brummett said. “You don’t see it during the game, but if you watch the video after, it’s like, ‘Wow, I almost got tackled.’ But the motion is pretty much the same.”

When she first started practicing for football, she would lift her hand in the air before each kick, just like a soccer player would before a free kick. But that wasn’t going to work in a game situation.

“I couldn’t hit it unless I put my hand up at first, but obviously in a game the ball’s not just sitting there, it’s snapped, so I can’t really do that,” Brummett said. “So now, (quarterback and holder) Pat (Brust) looks at me, he gives me a thumbs up, I give him a thumbs up, and then he says, ‘Set, go!’ and I go.”

“She’s adjusted to it really well,” McKenzie said. “She asks good questions, and she’s like a sponge – she just soaks everything up.”

The Giants have welcomed Brummett. After her made PATs against Franklin, she got slapped on the helmet and shoulder pads and looked like anyone else in a green uniform running off the field … unless you happened to notice the blonde braids coming out of her helmet and tucked into the back of her jersey.

“I’m friends with the guys on the team, so it’s worked out well,” Brummett said. “They’re all really nice to me, and it’s super fun.”

“They embrace her, and she’s definitely part of the team,” McKenzie said. “They’ve taken her in, taught her the pre-game warm ups and the beat that we do and everything.”

Brummett and her younger sister Sheridan are the two stars for the Brady girls’ soccer team, which is 7-2 and has aspirations of making a run in the Division III tournament. Those aspirations will take a blow if Adrienne happens to get injured playing football, a fact that is not lost on Mattarazzo.

“I’d rather have her here inside the four white lines of the soccer field with two white goals instead of two yellow goal posts, on either end, I’ll tell you that,” the soccer coach said with a smile, clearing enjoying the topic. “But honestly, it’s fun to watch her do it. We know she can handle it, and she has everybody’s support.”

(Tim O’Sullivan can be reached at 369-3341 or tosullivan@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @timosullivan20)



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