John Paul II Saints ready for first football game

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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – The John Paul II Saints will play their very first football game Thursday at home against Community Christian at 7 p.m.

"I'm definitely excited for it," said quarterback Ethan Mitchell. "I'm a little bit nervous because it's our first game. We're opening up, so we have a lot of pressure on us, but I think we'll handle it."

The game will take place at the team's brand new $15 million sports facility that features a beautiful turf field.

The Saints consist of 25 players and will play eight-man football in the North Carolina Independent Schools Big 8 Conference.

"I'm excited," added running back Shiyah Waller. "I've been waiting for this since last year when we were talking about a football team. I love football. We didn't have it here last year, so I'm ready to go out there and make some magic."

Head coach and athletic director Sean Murphy says there is a lot of excitement surrounding the game.

"I'm very excited," said Murphy. "This is something we have been talking about for a year now since this facility has been built. Our school community is thrilled that we're going to be starting football Thursday night. I'm expecting a great crowd and a great atmosphere. I think our kids are going to play hard. Our kids surprised me in our first scrimmage, so I think it's going to be entertaining, that's for sure."