According to ABC News, Neher’s team from Hollywood Hills High School lost its game 21-7, but Neher’s performance was anything but an L. As the only girl on the 50-person team, this was the first time Neher had ever played on the varsity team, and she threw the touchdown on her first passing attempt.
In the video, Neher’s team is seen freaking out after the touchdown, with teammates and coaches jumping on her, hitting her helmet, hugging and high-fiving her, and screaming from the sidelines.
— HHSpartansAthletics (@HHSpartanSports) September 1, 2017
In the school’s 51-year history, Neher is the second girl to play on the varsity team. Before the 16-year-old joined the varsity team, Neher played for the school’s girls’ flag football team for two years.
“Whether it’s a female or male quarterback or a ninth- or 12th-grader, you want someone who isn’t afraid to make a mistake and who knows they’re going to get yelled at from time to time,” Neher’s coach Brandon Graham told ABC News. “There is something about her that is so inspiring for her teammates. They want to follow her.”
A spokesperson for the Florida High School Athletic Associate couldn’t confirm that Neher was the first female high school athlete to throw a touchdown pass in the state, but he said he believed she might be.
Last year, Kendall Breland, a defensive tackle for Laurel High School’s football team, made history when she scored a touchdown for her team halfway through its 2016 season. While the Mississippi High School Activities Association keeps no definitive numbers on female football players, Breland is believed to be the first to score a touchdown in Mississippi.
— Taylor Curet (@TaylorCuret) October 8, 2016
Looking toward the future, Neher said she’ll take all football opportunities with open arms. She also hopes other kids can take inspiration from her success in a male-dominated sport.
“I hope that they all see how small how I am and no matter what mindset or color, race, size, gender, you can do anything you want,” Neher told ABC News.
H/T ABC News