A special touchdown for a Manila senior

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

It was a special touchdown on Friday night at the Manila home field as senior Dylan Galloway wheeled his chair into the end zone for a touchdown he will always remember.

Dylan Galloway, Manila senior, crosses the goal line during Friday's game scoring a touchdown for the home team against Rivercrest. Galloway was born with cerebral palsy and is confined to an electric wheelchair. (photo provided/Danny Helms Jr.)

The Manila senior has cerebral palsy and is confined to an electric wheelchair. He loves football and is always there for the team serving as water boy.

With 5:02 minutes left in the game against Rivercrest Manila Coach Toby Doke put a football helmet on Dylan and told him to get in there and score a touchdown.

Coach Doke had called Coach Kelly Chandler at Rivercrest with his plans to let Dylan in the game to make a touchdown. Coach Chandler had agreed to let it happen if possible. Late in the fourth quarter Manila drove down to the 3 or 4 yard line with the mercy clock running. Coach Doke decided it was a good time to put Dylan in. Coach Doke said he had talked to the quarterback and linemen and they knew what to do. They lined Dylan up, handed him the ball and he went around to the left side to the end zone.

Both the home team fans and the visitors erupted into a cheer for Dylan and all of his teammates went to celebrate with him.

Doke said it was a moment he will never forget.

It was a special moment for a special person, who his mother described as a happy-go-lucky kid who loves the game of football.

Doke said Dylan had been after him all year to let him score a touchdown.

"He had been after me all year in the hall, at lunchtime and during the school day," Doke said. "He wanted to score a touchdown."

With two home games left on the schedule, Doke decided the game against Rivercrest would be a good time to try and do it.

Following the game the Riverside Colts presented Dylan with a signed football to commemorate the night, and he was also presented with the game ball.

Galloway moved to Manila last year from Osceola, where he was the water boy for the Seminoles football team.

His mother said he went to Osceola Coach Clinton Gore to inquire about being a part of the team, and that is how he got involved with football.

It was an exciting night for Dylan as he scored a touchdown and a great night for his teammates, friends and family.

"I was excited for Dylan to get the opportunity," Coach Doke said. "It was one of the many special moments of my coaching career. I appreciate Coach Chandler and his team. From what Coach Chandler said, it meant as much to them as it did to us."

Kait8.com nominated Dylan's touchdown as one of the Central Dealerships Key Plays to Victory on Friday night giving his friends and fans a chance to vote for him. All you have to do to vote for Dylan is go to www.kait8.com and click on the sports link at the top. At the top of the sports page will be three nominees, including Dylan. Voting ends at 10 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 12.

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