HOUSTON (FOX 26) - Football is not just a man's sport and there's a team in Houston willing to prove that. Houston Energy Football is an all-women's, full-contact football team that's now looking for new players to join next year's roster.
At the first round of tryouts, dozens of women showed up at J. Frank Dobie High School to prove they had what it takes to join Houston Energy, the reigning champs of the Independent Women's Football Alliance League.
Hopeful players had to showcase their speed, agility and ability to change direction quickly through a series of drills and time-tests, all while the coaches analyzed their coordination.
As the 2018 champs of the Independent Women's Football Alliance, their expectations are high.
Brian Wiggins is the owner and head coach of Houston Energy.
"It's full contact. They wear pads just like the guys-- helmets, shoulder pads, pants," Wiggins said.
Wiggins has been coaching the team since 2003. Wiggins is a former NFL player and said the drills and given at tryouts are the same ones used to train professionals.
Wiggins said Houston Energy is looking for an additional 20 women.
Jacque Gunter is one of dozens of women hoping to round out the team's 45-player roster for 2019.
"So far I feel a little bit out of shape, but I feel good. It's giving me a lot more energy," Gunter said.
Jacque, like many other women on the team, wear several different hats.
By day, some are moms, students or business professionals.
"I'm a case manager for a child placement agency," Gunter said.
"I'm getting my masters in special education," said Ekko Hendrix, who's also trying out for the team.
"I'm a senior systems business analyst for a benefits administration company," said returning player, TK LaFleur.
And by night, they're on the field, practicing to defeat the 20 other all-female teams across the US and Canada.
They range in all skill sets and ages.
"Our youngest is 18 and our oldest is 55," Wiggins said.
But Houston Energy is so much more than just a female, football team.
"It's definitely showing young girls, young women that you can come out here and you can be an athlete," LaFleur said.
"These girls-- some need the structure and some need the discipline. Some need the team atmosphere, the family atmosphere," Wiggins said.
For the women on the team, it's family.
"And it's not just about what the traditional norms have been in the past. It's that women have the opportunity to play and do just about anything they want to do," LaFleur said.
"It's really awesome to have a team of other females who are just driven, who persevere and who really push themselves to their limits to become better," Hendrix said.
Houston Energy has tryouts once a month until December, so if you'd like to have your go at it-- there's still a chance for you to make it. To register for a spot, click here.
The team will begin their 2019 season in April.