Center Sneak

Tommy Haran shoved his fists into his pockets and stood with the rest of the team, waiting for the coach of the 49ers Flag Football team to call out their positions. Every fall he went through this: his mother’s insistence that he play at least one sport. It wasn’t easy. He wasn’t an athlete. He didn’t quite fit. He was taller than everyone, and bigger too. The wrestling team wanted him, but he’d tried that and had nightmares about the head-holds. Soccer hadn’t worked either; the ball and his feet never liked to connect.

The coach’s mouth was moving. What was that? Center? What does he do? Snap the ball to the quarterback, huh?

At least they’d given him a position, he thought.

“You know, the Center is the first line of defense, kiddo,” his mother told him as they drove around doing errands the next day.

“Mom, you don’t know anything about football.”

“I know, but I looked it up. If Wikipedia says it’s so, you know it’s true.” She was grinning.

Tommy rolled his eyes and decided to do a little bit of research himself. She was right. The Center was also supposed to be one of the most intelligent members of the team.

Okay, he thought, I can do this.

* * *

It was the second to last game of the season. They’d won every game so far, but the Bengals were tough. Really tough. Tommy’s hands were sweaty. Flag football had been fun so far, but he wasn’t so sure about the coach’s plan. He was just starting to fit. He didn’t want to be the reason they lost to the Bengals. He’d never live it down.

“44 . . . 25 . . . 36 . . .  Hut!”

The ball. He had the ball.


Logo by Dean

He ran. He ran and he ran, arms pumping, legs flying.

He could feel them, staring at him, struck dumb for just long enough.

The Center Sneak had worked.

He sailed into the end zone.

The whistle blew and the crowd roared. Tommy Haran had scored the final touchdown. The game was over, and they had won.


The names have been changed to protect the innocent, but it is a true story for Day 27 of the Creative Writing Challenge.

About KM Sullivan

Descended of pirates and revolutionaries, KM Sullivan is a lover and student of all things Irish. Born in the States, she is a dual US/Irish citizen, and studied history and politics at University College, Dublin – although, at the time, she seriously considered switching to law, if only so she could attend lectures at the castle on campus. She lives in the American Midwest with her son, two cats and a pesky character in her head named D (but you can call him Dubh). Her first book, Changelings: Into the Mist, a young adult historical fantasy is available now on Amazon and Barns and Noble. She can be found writing with said character at her blog, The D/A Dialogues.

11 comments on “Center Sneak

  1. Sounds like something fun and exciting to have seen.

  2. Oh that is such a sweet story Katie! My mom was the same way actually pushing me into sports even though I am not very athletic, lol. I did Field in the Track & Field thingy. I was horrible at it, lol.

  3. Love the story but the disclaimer sealed it lol 

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