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Home-school Bachman duo starts on defensive line

It is becoming widely known that FC is partnering with Tower Christian and Sierra View Christian Academy, to give home-schooled students the oppurtunity to participate in sports. These students include junior Hunter Bachman, No. 32, sophomore Levi Browatzke, No. 51, freshmen Nathan Browatzke, No. 60, Josh Freeman, No. 52, and Sawyer Bachman, No. 65. Two of these home-schooled students, the Bachman brothers, are looking forward to their first year of high school football.

Hunter, the older of the two brothers, who plays linebacker, has never played football before, but has already proven himself on the team’s defence. He and his younger brother, Sawyer, who plays right defensive tackle, found they were eligible to play for the Eagles from family friends and campus students Caleb Nale, ’14, and his brother, Cole, ’15.

“Since our dads work together and we have known them for a while, the Nales had told us that there weren’t a lot of players so they were wondering if we could come out and play,” Hunter said. “I love playing football for FC because I have always enjoyed watching it and the hard practices challenge me to be the best I can be. You don’t get a whole lot of exercise when you are home-schooled, so this has really been a win-win opportunity. I am just thankful that I got to play one year of varsity football before I go to college and it’s too late.”

Sawyer is coming into the football program as a freshman and is hoping for a successful football career with FC. He, like his brother, has been home-schooled his whole life. Sawyer has always wanted to play football, ever since he started playing with his friends for fun.

“This is my first year playing football like my brother,” Sawyer said. “I really wanted to play since I have played with friends in pickup-games before and enjoyed it. I have enjoyed playing so far because I like to play rough. You don’t really get a chance to get this physical when your home-schooled.”

Head football coach Mick Fuller, stated that he is excited about the home-schoolers playing football because they bring energy to the program.

“Fresno Christian is allowing home-schoolers to participate in football this year because it gives those families an opportunity to let their students play sports that they wouldn’t have been able to otherwise,” Fuller said. “It allows us to have a larger pool of student athletes to draw from to participate in our sports. This helps us be more likely to field more levels of teams. I am excited about the home-schoolers playing our sports because they are great kids and they bring a good deal of enthusiasm to our program.”

Hunter and Sawyer have been given starting positions on the team. Both have racked up a fair amount of tackles and look to deal more damage in the future as well.

Hunter stated that he has had many highlights and lowpoints so far this season. His greatest accomplishment so far this season, he said, is when he blocked a kick in a game against Tranquillity High School.

“My low point was probably when I jogged while I had an opportunity to make a play against Tranquillity,” Hunter said. “My highlight though, also came in that game against Tranquillity, when I blocked an extra point attempt. There is no better feeling than that.”

Sawyer has also had both his high points and his low points. His differ from Hunter’s, in that, he takes an entire win or loss as his own.

“My low point so far this season was probably when we lost against Avenal,” Sawyer said. “That was a rough game for everyone on the team. My highlight though, was when we got our first win against Riverdale.”

Fellow teammate and longtime friend, Cole, said that he loves playing alongside his friends, Hunter and Sawyer. They are both fun kids to be around on and off the field, he said.

“I first met Hunter and Sawyer when I was on their baseball team in the fourth grade,” Cole said. “It has been a good time being able to play alongside them again. They have already started to help our team execute and get the job done on Friday nights.”

Hunter and Sawyer’s parents, Dave and Christen, are very excited that their sons were given this opportunity and think it will help them in their college career.

“We are very proud that are kids are taking advantage of this very special opportunity given to them,” Christen said. “We know that it is very hard to get a home-schooled student into an organized sports program, so we are thankful to Fresno Christian for allowing them to do this. We are hoping that we can get Sawyer back into the program next year.”

Longtime friend, Joby Spalding, ’13, believes that both Hunter, Sawyer and FC are benefitting from their participation.

“I met Hunter and Sawyer 14 years ago at church,” Spalding said. “They have always been hardcore football fans and really wanted to play. I think it benefits Hunter and Sawyer as well as Fresno Christian because they are playing.”

While Hunter and Sawyer are stepping up and making a difference at FC, they explained what it is they do when they are at home. The brothers have both been home-schooled their whole lives and have loved it.

“We love being home-schooled,” said Hunter. “We get to work at our own pace and if something important comes up, we can easily make room for it in our schedule. It also keeps us from being exposed to all the junk and distractions that gets thrown at kids these days. There is definitely a down side though because we can’t participate in all the activities that other kids might. That is why we are so thankful to Fresno Christian for letting us play football.”

Since home-schooling is a different culture to the FC community, people want to know what there is to do when you have all that free time. Hunter and Sawyer said that even though they are home-schooled, they still have social lives.

“We like to hangout with our friends, play paintball and stuff like that in our free-time,” Sawyer said. “There’s usually a lot to do around the house when we aren’t doing anything, so we help out with that. That’s why we like home-schooling because you just feel more free to do things that you can’t do in a public or private school.”

This being Hunter’s senior year of high school, he does not have any plans set-in-stone for college.

“I am not really positive on what I’m going to do for college,” Hunter said. “I am thinking about attending Pensacola Christian College. I would like to become either a pastor, missionary or something in music.”

Fuller stated that all students from either Tower Chrsitian or Sierra View Christian Academy are allowed to play any sport they want at Fresno Christian. They may also go to any sporting event hosted by the school for free, as long as they have their home-school identification card.

“The home-schooled students are allowed to play any of our sports,” Fuller said. “All students from either Tower Christian or Sierra View Christian Academy, are incorporated into our student body for the purpose of athletics. This means that they can go to all of our games and events for free, just like our students.”

Hunter and Sawyer said they were drawn to play football because it is both of their favorite sport. They always have enjoyed watching football and had learned a lot just from observing the professional athletes.

“I have loved football ever since I was a kid,” Sawyer said. “My favorite pro team is the Dallas Cowboys, but I have never been to a pro game. Football is my favorite sport and I have loved it so far, but I am not sure if I’m going to play next year. If everything goes good this season, then I can play next year.”

Hunter said that his senior year has been much better because of the sports program. He realized not many home-schoolers get this opportunity so he decided to take advantage of it.

“Football is definitely my favorite sport,” Hunter said. “I think that I already knew some of the techniques involved from watching my favorite team the Chargers. I have always wanted to go, but I have never been to a pro-game. I am just thankful to God that I could play football”

For more sports, read the Oct. 1 article Captain discusses mid-season focus (PODCAST).

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    Nick BaladjanianAug 17, 2012 at 12:04 am

    This was a great game to come watch it was really intense! Way to win guys!