She’s tough. No doubt about it. Nina Loewer is the first female quarterback on the JV football team and an exchange student from Berlin, Germany. For the past 5 years, Loewer has been shocking everyone with her abilities to play a male-dominated sport.
As an exchange student, Loewer says that Oregon is a great place to come to. She felt comfortable from the first moment and said everyone she’s met has been welcoming and supportive.
As for what drew Loewer to the United States, she says that she has always been obsessed with the states and just had to come here. And so far, it has not disappointed.
Loewer describes her experiences playing football as special and empowering. “I know that I’m tough. I know that I’m strong. And I can keep up with guys. And that’s what I really like about football,” Loewer says.
There is a harsh reality to being a girl in a male dominated sport.
“I know that I’m not always gonna feel super comfortable, because I’m a girl,” Loewer says. “It annoys me that I always have to get a coach to unlock the locker room for me or I have to sit in the front in the bus.”
The head coach of the Ida B Wells football team, Keith Bennett says that Loewer has to sit within a few seats of the coaches for her safety. “I have two daughters and I always make sure they have proper supervision around a group of boys. This is no different,” he says.
Being a girl in a “boys” sport has its challenges, but Loewer doesn’t let that stop her. Her backup quarterback, Spencer Reid, says that Loewer is always making everyone give 100% and making sure everyone does their best. “It’s actually pretty cool. Not a lot of women play football, so it’s pretty cool to have her here,” he says.
In the time that she is here, Loewer wants to prove that she can keep up with the rest of the guys, not only in JV, but in Varsity as well. “Girls shouldn’t be scared of doing something that they’re not supposed to do. We can always work as hard as guys can.” Loewer says.
Coach Bennett says, “I hope she always looks back on this experience, and remembers it forever. So it’d be great for her to tell her grandchildren about the year she played football in America.”
Loewer is a player that will be remembered. Not only by the coaches and players, but by the crowds that watch her. She will be remembered as the first female football player at Ida B Wells High School and will continue to break boundaries wherever she is next.
“I think everyone has to get used to the fact that I’m here, that I’m a female quarterback, and that I need respect.”