From the Division I level to the high school and semi-professional levels, El Paso is home to quite a few football programs, but something new is on its way. The Sun City Stealth will become the area’s first ever professional women’s football team.
“We are very excited to bring this team to the El Paso area,” Stealth co-owner Derek Smith recently told The Gridiron Grind.
“We will be playing teams from around New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Arizona and many other teams from around the nation,” Smith said.
Next on the schedule is the Stealth’s November 2nd tryouts, before kicking off their 2020 season in the WFA.
According to their website, the WFA opened its doors to female athletes across the nation in 2009, and has franchises across the nation. The WFA’s non-profit business model changed the sport by charging franchises 70 percent lower fees than other women’s leagues in operation.
As start-ups and sports teams of all levels learn, community involvement is key and that’s something the Stealth will prioritize from the beginning.
“We will be working closely with local non-profit organizations, youth organizations and public entities that will help to better the overall quality of life for the team and people who are involved, directly or indirectly.”
Of all the potential mascots, both common and original, why did they decide to go with the name Stealth?
“We wanted to be different,” Smith said. “When you hear the word Stealth, what is the first thing that comes to mind? A plane, right? Well, in our case we decided to have an owl for our mascot. Not only is an owl stealthy, but they are wise. They are hunters and, in old local folklore, they represent bad luck to those who cross them. Also, we wanted to combine another stealthy figure with the owl – a ninja. The combination of the two make for a perfect combo to sneak up on teams undetected, silently, and effectively to handle their business. And besides, what kid doesn’t like a ninja?”
Smith is no stranger to the football scene. For the past three years he was part of the West Texas Lions men’s football team and the Las Cruces Kings before that, in addition to the women’s football team in Las Cruces.
“I’ve always been an advocate for equality, fairness and sportsmanship throughout the years,” Smith said. “My previous experiences with different aspects of football and community relations enabled me to put together a good group that is in it for all the right reasons. Personally, I have been part of successful teams and of course, non successful teams. Fortunately, we can always learn from our experiences and help build a better future from the wins and losses that life has dealt us in the past. I am very confident in our staff and coaches.”
Game times and sites will be released at a later date, but fans can stay plugged in to the Stealth’s Facebook page for the latest information.
“Find us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or online and send us a message,” Smith said.
The upcoming tryouts are open to the public.
The Stealth’s staff includes:
Owner/CXO: Derek Smtih
Owner/CBO: Robert Rodriguez
General Manager: Iris Ruiz
Assistant General Manager: Jamar Cotton
Head Coach: Fonzie Gomez
Defensive Coordinator: Bill Parker
Assistant Coaches: Manny Acosta, Jeff Turnbull, Ray Penn, Tay Collier, German Hernandez, Orlando Lopez
Statistician: Alex Rodriguez
Media/Public Relations: Mike Tipton
Graphics/Web Design: Pat Montelongo
Marketing: Michelle “Mica” Hernandez
Photographer: Caleb Lara