Football and Disney World. Childhood dreams will come true for three Virginia Beach Pop Warner football teams this weekend at the National Championships in Orlando, Fla.
After winning their respective Mid-South Regional Championship two weeks ago in Raleigh, N.C. — a tournament that featured teams from seven states — the Virginia Beach Mustangs’ Jr. Pee Wee, Pee Wee and Jr. Midget teams will compete in the Division 1 Super Bowl from Dec. 5 to Dec. 12 at ESPN’s World Wide of Sports Complex.
“It’s very ideal for an organization just to have one team go,” Jr. Pee Wee coach Chris Currie said. “Three teams is pretty exciting.”
This is the third time since 2001 the Mustangs have sent teams to the National Championships. The Jr. Pee Wee Mustangs won the national title in 2012, while the Jr. Midgets won in 2001.
All three Mustang teams will compete on Sunday. The Jr. Pee Wee squad (ages 8-10) will play Connecticut’s New Haven Seahawks at 11 a.m. The Pee Wee team (ages 10-12) will play Connecticut’s Hartford Hurricanes at 4 p.m., and the Mustang Jr. Midgets (ages 12-13) will face Philadelphia’s Northwest Raiders at 6 p.m.
Sunday’s winners will play in the semifinals Dec. 9. Each game will be streamed on ESPN3. The losers of Sunday’s games will play a consolation game on Dec. 9.
The teams will stay at Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort and enjoy a free two-day pass to Disney World’s park. The week off from school won’t be a complete vacation for the kids; they’ll have two mandatory two-hour study hall sessions with computers and tutors.
“They’re excited man,” Currie said of the boys. “Just to be able to go down there, it’s awesome.”
Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly said the championship games would be broadcast on ESPN2.