Hastings Bears football team boasts melting pot of talent on the gridiron

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Thursday, November 15, 2018
Hastings Bears boast melting pot of talent on the gridiron
A brotherhood of international joy is growing on the football field at Alief Hastings High School.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The Alief community is one of the reasons why the city of Houston is considered one of the most diverse cities in the United States.

You can go from eating Salvadoran pupusas, Nigerian jollof rice or Honduran baleadas without leaving a single street.

At Hastings High School, the varsity football team is a prime example of how this area is a melting pot. They have players from Colombia, Nigeria, Cuba, Cameroon and Sudan, just to name some of the many nationalities on this roster.

"It's been great so far. We are all different but we are all able to come together and work together," says Emmanuel Olalumade.

They have a brotherhood that cannot be explained unless you are part of the team. The players have introduced each other to ethnic dances, quinceañeras and diverse foods, bringing an international sense of joy on and off the field.

"It's wonderful we are all together as a team sport. It's a family, a brotherhood, we're just, we're all together as one and it brings joy to the game," Dylan Foto said.

Many of these athletes did not learn the rules or how to put on a pair of shoulder pads until they reached junior high, which at times can make things a bit more complicated for the coaching staff.

"We teach them the rules of the game and sometimes they learn the hard way," head coach David Martel said. "Sometimes they make mistakes on the field. If you are not making mistakes, you are not learning. I want what is best for every kid. Every kid deserves to play the game of football."