Three Texans fans are among the 32 young football enthusiasts from around the country that will compete in the NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass & Kick National Finals on Jan. 10, prior to the NFC Divisional Playoff Game in Charlotte, N.C. A special on-field award presentation will air after the third quarter of Saturday's game, which airs on FOX.
Texans representatives Andrew Beck of Harker Heights, Texas; Bekah Alcozar of Belton, Texas; and Megan Ozungla of San Antonio are among the 32 finalists selected from a contestant pool of 3.5 million people.
Boys and girls will compete separately in four age divisions, with the top scorer in each group crowned national champion. All participants launch one punt, one pass and one kick, with scores based on distance and accuracy in feet. All 32 youngsters advanced to the national finals through local, sectional and team championship competitions held throughout the NFL regular season. The top four scorers in each age group from around the country qualified as national finalists.
NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass & Kick is the nation's largest grassroots sports skills competition. Current NFL stars including Texans punter Matt Turk, New York Jets quarterback Brett Favre and Baltimore Ravens kicker Matt Stover competed in the Punt, Pass & Kick program as youngsters.
"The NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass and Kick program gives millions of girls and boys around the country a way to be active participants in the game of football," said Alexia Gallagher, NFL Director of Youth Football. "We are pleased to see so many of our young fans entering the world of NFL football through this program."
All participants and their two guests are provided airfare, hotel accommodations and tickets to the Arizona Cardinals-Carolina Panthers game in Charlotte.
Finalists are listed along with the NFL team that hosted their regional competition:
|Girls 8-9||Boys 8-9|
|Tori Hanson, Delano, MN (Vikings)||Justin Jefferson, St. Rose, LA (Saints)|
|Maura Hoying, Coldwater, OH (Bengals)||Michael Colonna, Miami, FL (Dolphins)|
|Samantha Mendoza, San Angelo, TX (Cowboys)||Michael McCoy, Santa Ynez, CA (Raiders)|
|Maci Hutto, Aiken, SC (Panthers)||Jacob Robinson, Granger, IN (Colts)|
|Girls 10-11||Boys 10-11|
|Dominique Greeno, Lacey, WA (Seahawks)||Evan Delaney, Hadley, MA (Patriots)|
|Jamie Holscher, Lincoln, NE (Chiefs)||Jacob Donahoe, Mesquite, TX (Cowboys)|
|Bekah Alcozar, Belton, TX (Texans)||Joshua Reyes, Streetsboro, OH (Browns)|
|Jenna Goodrich, Davie, FL (Dolphins)||Kevin Pickelsimmer, Clinton Township, MI (Lions)|
|Girls 12-13||Boys 12-13|
|Sarah Firestone, Mercersburg, PA (Ravens)||Andrew Beck, Harker Heights, TX (Texans)|
|Elisa Formiglio, Bozrah, CT (Patriots)||Ryan Garmer, Dyer, TN (Titans)|
|Felicia Stancil, Lake Villa, IL (Bears)||Luke Randolph, Pendleton, IN (Colts)|
|Aubri McCoy, Volant, PA (Steelers)||Homer Woody IV, Indiana, PA (Steelers)|
|Girls 14-15||Boys 14-15|
|Anna Grant, Stratham, NH (Patriots)||Collin Hartman, Indianapolis, IN (Colts)|
|Mikala Gordon, Pueblo, CO (Broncos)||Ronnie Gideon, Hallsville, TX (Cowboys)|
|Megan Ozungla, San Antonio, TX (Texans)||Luke Weiss, River Falls, WI (Packers)|
|Jessica Escalante, Santa Barbara, CA (49ers)||Kyle Auernhamer, Vassar, MI (Lions)|
NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass & Kick is part of NFL Youth Football, which provides ways for children to play, watch and experience the game of football. More information about the competition is on www.NFLYouthfootball.com, the NFL's official youth football website.
To sign up for the Texans' Youth Football camps, click here.