For the 10th time in the last 11 years, Melissa has earned a spot in the state 7 on 7 football tournament. On Saturday, May 27, at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, the Cardinals sailed through pool play undefeated with wins over Burkburnett, 35-0, Electra, by forfeit, and Stamford, 36-14. In the semi-final round, Melissa defeated Gainesville, 28-12, to secure the state-tourney berth. To determine the overall champion that day, the Cards’ Brendon Lewis out-dueled Kaufman’s quarterback in a game of “rock-paper-scissors.”

College Station will host the 2017 state tournament on June 29-30. There, the Cards will be looking for their second 7 on 7 state title. Their first championship came in 2011, the same year Melissa went on to claim a state football title.

State-qualifying tournaments (SQTs) for 7 on 7 are held across Texas each spring, with competition divided into two brackets: Division I (Class 5A-6A and TAPPS Div. I) and Division II (Class 4A and below, and other private schools). The top two teams at each SQT qualify for the state tournament.

On Monday evenings throughout June, Melissa, Anna, Van Alstyne and Denison varsity squads will compete in their own 7 on 7 league at Cardinal Stadium. A junior high league will play on Tuesdays.

The Texas State 7 on 7 Association is a private organization with no ties to the UIL or the Texas High School Coaches Association. No high school coaches may coach the teams or stand on the sidelines. Melissa’s team is coached by Paul Anderson. The game is played on a 45-yard field and is all-pass, one- or two-hand touch, with the quarterback having four seconds to throw the ball. No pads or helmets are worn. This competition started in 1998, with all teams competing in the same division through 2006.