As far as rookie seasons go, Danielle Fournier’s was a pretty great one.
The North Andover High graduate broke into the Women’s Football Alliance with the Boston Renegades last season, and helped them win the 2018 WFA Championship.
Now, she has the chance to help them do it again as Boston (9-0) will face the Cali War (8-0) in the WFA title game on Saturday (8 p.m.)
“My rookie season was pretty special to be a part of,” Fournier said. “This year, I’m just trying to capitalize on that and bring home another winning season. We’re really excited and just trying to earn another title.”
Fournier is joined by a trio of fellow local athletes, 18-year veteran Charlene Casey, of Lawrence. and Angelica and Stephanie Pascual, sisters from Lawrence who attended Proctor Academy.
All players have their own careers on the side, but make time to work toward the common goal of a championship.
Fournier said preseason practices are at least twice a week and, if there isn’t a third scheduled, the captains will organize one on Saturdays. During the season, the games come on Saturdays, and the players do all they can during the week to prepare.
“People put all their time and effort into it,” Fournier said. “It’s just great to see that.”
Fournier, a defensive end, said the current campaign has had a much different feel than her first, during which the Renegades went 9-2 en route to a 42-18 win over the Los Angeles Warriors for the national title in Kennesaw, Ga.
Players have come and gone, and instead of being a wide-eyed rookie, Fournier said she’s tried to take on a bit more of a leadership role.
“Every year, you get different types of players that show up,” Fournier said. “Last year’s team was fantastic, but there’s a bunch of new talent this year. Everybody’s working hard and preparation breeds confidence. It’s a completely different type of feel, but we’re happy to be back there in the championship.”
The Renegades’ opposition, the Cali War, is an unknown commodity, Fournier said. Due to travel and other logistical things, the Renegades don’t get out to face west coast teams during the regular season.
They’ll certainly have confidence, though, sitting unbeaten with a 48-point average margin of victory.
Fournier said they’re doing everything they can to prepare for what she can only imagine will be a difficult challenge in the way of another championship.
“The stakes are high in every game, but season is on the line with this one, so we’re ready to go,” Fournier said. “It’s going to be a battle.”
WFA CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
WHO: Boston Renegades (9-0) vs. Cali War (8-0)
WHAT: Women’s Football Alliance National Championship
WHEN: Saturday, July 13, at 8 p.m.
WHERE: Colorado School of Mines in Golden, Colorado