Football

‘She can create history’: Bartolotta becomes Auburn varsity football’s first female player | High School

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“My initial interest was that if she could come out for the team, contribute to the team and be a part of the team, then great,” Moskov said. “Welcome aboard.”

Under normal circumstances, Bartolotta wouldn’t have the opportunity to play for both the girls soccer and football teams. Section III does not allow dual participation (competing in multiple sports during the same season) when that participation involves football.

COVID-19 rules banished football from its normal September start to March, providing Bartolotta with a unique opportunity. 

She admits to being nervous at first when official team practices began earlier this month, due to her unfamiliarity with many of the players. But she credited her new teammates for welcoming her with open arms. 

“I felt like I’ve been there ever since we were little,” Bartolotta said. “They were very welcoming and included me in everything. Honestly, it feels like family.”

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So far, coaches have limited Bartolotta’s responsibilities to specializing as the kicker on PATs. Moskov noted the learning curve for field goal kicking compared to kicking a soccer ball — the former involves much more procedure and timing, while the latter is more random. 

“We didn’t want to send a full 11 players coming at her the first time out,” Moskov said. “It was a progression, and each day we added something new in terms of how she kicks and what she’s seeing. We took her through the differences of what your steps have to be, how you have to step up for the kick, the snap, how the ball moves.

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