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Diablos bring gay flag football to San Antonio
QSanAntonio.com, June 3, 2009

A band of local athletes who first organized last year have started San Antonio’s first and only gay flag football team. The Diablos now play in the San Antonio Flag Football League and the team has its eye on attending the Gay Flag Football Super Bowl this October in Washington D.C.

In addition to participating in the local league, the Diablos schedule games with gay teams from Houston, Tyler, Dallas and Austin. "Our push right now is for new members, as well as being much more visible in the local GLBT community," says Darren Claus who plays on the team.

Flag football is a version of American football that is popular worldwide. The basic rules of the game are similar to those of regular football, but instead of tackling players to the ground, the defensive team must remove a flag from the ball carrier to end a down. Players wear a belt with hanging "flags."

The Diablos outline their mission statement in a new brochure: "The San Antonio Diablos Flag Football Club endeavors to utilize the social, athletic and competitive nature of flag football to create a positive and welcoming environment for its members fans and sponsors. As a predominantly gay organization, it seeks to promote self-respect within its members and mutual respect and understanding within the team, the league and general community."

Claus says that a lot of the team’s extra efforts are aimed at raising money to attend the gay "Super Bowl" in Washington D.C. this fall. To that end the team is hosting fundraisers and hoping to attract sponsors who are willing to help with that goal.

In July, the Diablos will host all of the Texas teams that belong to the National Gay Flag Football League for a scrimmage in San Antonio. The weekend will include a dinner and a pub crawl.

Membership in the team is open to anyone who wishes to participate regardless of athletic ability. "Women are welcome on the team," says Claus. "They can practice with us and play in our scrimmages with the other NGFFL teams and at the Gay Flag Football Super Bowl this October in Washington D.C., though women cannot play in the San Antonio league games as the local league is for men only."

Anyone interested in learning more about the Diabolos can join their Yahoo group at http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/sanantoniodiablos/.

They also have a MySpace page (www.myspace.com/sanantoniodiablos) and a Facebook page (facebook.com/home.php#/group.php?gid=82587181855&ref=ts)