Helix plays in SoCal Honor Bowl

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It is not just about winning, at least not at the annual Southern California Honor Bowl, held for the first time this year at Cathedral Catholic High School. 

It is not just about winning, at least not at the annual Southern California Honor Bowl, held for the first time this year at Cathedral Catholic High School. 

The Honor Bowl is a weekend dedicated not only to beginning the season with quality football matches, but to giving back to those who have served our country. Helix High School found itself among the ten teams invited to compete at the bowl, facing Lancaster Paraclete on Saturday, September 2, 2017. The Paraclete Spirits are themselves division champions and promised the Highlanders a tough match. 

Although the Scotties put up a fight, they lost 23-6. Neither team scored in the first half, the end of last week’s intense heat wave beating down the players and slowing action on the field. 

Mark Soto, founder and executive director the Honor Bowl, said the heat was a concern but not unbeatable. 

“It’s been warmer than it usually is so we just want to be conscious of safety and make sure the guys get rehabilitated and get plenty of hydration,” he said. 

Halftime was lengthened by several minutes to allow players more time to cool off and rehydrate, but play continued as normal in the second half. Lancaster scored 13 in the third quarter and another 10 in the fourth. Helix put six points on the board in the fourth quarter, but by then it was too little, much too late. 

But winning was not the ultimate objective anyway. 

Helix head coach Robbie Owens reported during halftime that the goal is to compete against as many high-caliber teams as possible before the start of league.

And of course, the weekend was meant to support an important cause. 

Since its debut in 2010, the Honor Bowl has been educating student athletes and their communities about the needs of veterans. Soto said that each team that comes to compete contributes to that cause. 

“They pay their way to be in the Honor Bowl,” he said. “They have to fundraise on their own to come out and give back to our military.”

This year, said Soto, is their first year with an NFL sponsor. 

“The Lynch family has been working with us for years and when they learned that we were looking for a presenting sponsor, and that the 49ers are making a huge drive toward youth and love our military veterans, they thought, what a great marriage this would be to bring us together under this great roof of the Honor Bowl,” he said. 

With teams coming from as far away as Hawaii and Florida, Soto said this year’s bowl promised to be a good one. 

Helix will participate in Touchdown Against Cancer, games played throughout September to raise awareness and funds for childhood cancers. Their first match will be a home game on Friday, September 15, against Cathedral Catholic, who beat them for the division title last December.

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