Darlington dials long distance to find kicker - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Darlington dials long distance to find kicker

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The Darlington Redbirds are one of the best football teams in the state. They play good defense. They certainly can run the ball. However, one of the major question marks coming into the year was at kicker. The answer came in the form of a foreign exchange student from Spain.

Alvaro Barrera hails from Madrid. Needless to say, that city is not considered fertile training ground for American football players.

"The first time he came down, we were looking at him," remembers star running back Hunter Johnson. "He's got these short shorts on. That's something we've never seen. You know, who is this kid?"

Alvaro quickly won over the respect of the team. Like an urban legend, the story has it he launched a ball 60-plus yards into the parking lot behind the field.

"We were all just watching him, and he whispers to the guy next to him, want me to kick it further? We were like yeah, go for it," laughs quarterback Jared Meister.

"I've never seen kids get excited over watching a kicker for the first time," head coach Scott Zywicki says with a smile. "In practice, our kids were like whoa!"

After growing up in Spain, Alvaro developed a love for soccer, which now translates over the gridiron in Wisconsin.

"In soccer the ball is circular. I can kick the ball further. Like a soccer ball I can kick further."

For now, the Darlington football team is more than happy with the distance they're getting from their long distance visitor.

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