Story by Bro Mike Mirchell
Photos by Bro. Alvin Swilley
PORTSMOUTH VA--The annual Over the Hill Bowl was held February 2, 2019 on practice fields at Churchland High School in Portsmouth, Va. This hilariously fun event has been going on for 36 years to raise money for the Help and Emergency Response (HER) Shelter. HER, Inc. provides leadership, advocacy, and resources to survivors and communities affected by domestic and sexual violence, stalking and human trafficking. The goal is to create a safe environment for all through awareness, services, and training for lasting change in the communities we serve. Registered teams participate in a round robin touch football tournament which culminates in presentation of awards at a sidelines luncheon, complete with Sweethaven cupcakes. Players—some young, some “vintage”--lace up their shoes and set aside pride for a great cause.
Since 2013, the Brothers of Gamma Xi Chapter from Va Beach have coordinated the fielding of an Omega Psi Phi team from Eastern Area I and beyond to support this effort. This year, they were joined by graduate Brothers from Lambda Omega, Tau Lambda, Xi Sigma, Xi Xi, Omicron Nu, Lambda Xi and Psi chapters. The team consisted of Brothers Mike Mitchell, Dennis Florence, Greg Anderson, Damon Harris, Mark Ball, Eddie Mitchell, Dr. Rashad Wilkerson, Malique Johnson, Trent Walker, Wyatt Sutton, Brandon Franklin and Charles Colston. By rule female players are required to play meaningful downs and did more than that by carrying the team on several occasions. “Team Tenacity’s” distaff players included Stella Solorzano, Mary Smith and Heather Evans, friends of the Brothers. Cameron Morton, 15 year old son of Bro. James Morton contributed with some timely plays. The team won both of its 40-minute games by substantial margins, and contributed $530 to HER’s coffers. Player-Coach Bro. Mike Mitchell was voted the tourney’s Most Valuable Player, throwing several touchdowns, catching one and coaching the team to victory.
Gamma Xi Brothers Alvin Swilley, James Morton and Basileus Dr. Keenan Davis were on-hand providing moral support. Pam Morton—Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.--was the official timekeeper, spectator, cheerleader and provided photography support.