Long Beach High School senior Brooke Yellin made history on Sept. 14 when she became the first female kicker on the varsity football team to convert an extra point.
Yellin — who also plays for the Long Beach women’s varsity soccer team — was called into action after her team scored a touchdown against the Garden City Trojans. Overwhelmed with nerves, she said she bit down on her mouthpiece, but once her coach called on her to kick the extra point, she was just excited to make history.
“To be able to go out and make history is something that I will never forget,” said Yellin, one of two women on the team. She added that she felt a sense of empowerment in the moment and was happy to know that everyone accepted her on the team.
“It shows me that the world is changing,” Yellin said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a girl you could still do it.”
Though the Long Beach Marines ended up on the wrong side of a 41-7 final score, Yellin praised her team’s grit.
“At the end of the day the score doesn’t matter,” said Yellin. “It’s the fact that me and my teammates fought the whole game and we never gave up.”
Yellin has played soccer since seventh grade and is now a multisport athlete. A combination of practice and experience on the soccer field gave her the tools to kick the extra point, she said. Even though she was the first female kicker to kick an extra point for the Marines, she has also made history in other aspects of her life.
She can be seen wearing No. 81 on the football field in honor of her late mother, Geri, whose favorite number was 18. In March of last year, Yellin launched the Geri E. Yellin Scholarship Foundation in honor of her mother a month after her death.
In order to raise funds for the scholarship, Yellin has sold bracelets, lanyards and silicone phone wallets. After raising the funds, she awarded a senior student at the Senior Scholarship Ceremony with $500 on May 30 — her birthday.
Yellin will continue her season as a multisport athlete and is planning to study to become a physical education teacher. For now, Yellin said she intends to kick extra points for the Marines when they take on the Sewanhaka Indians on Saturday at 2 p.m.