Winhawks football players make lasting memory for young fans

Football players wearing orange jerseys smile with young fans at a tailgate party

Winhawk football players Wesley Wollan, Jacob Heftman, Ben Rustad, Graham Engrav, Brayden McDevitt and Tommy Modjeski pose with young fans before a football game last week.

A group of Winona Senior High School football players gave four young fans a moment to remember Friday night. 

Brittany and Drew Krings hosted a pre-game tailgate at their house for their son McCoy, a second-grader at Jefferson Elementary, and three of his friends. The plan was for the boys to play, eat, then walk over to the game. 

The boys didn’t know, however, that they would be visited by some special guests. 

The Heftman family lives a few houses away from the Krings family. Jacob Heftman, a senior, is the starting quarterback for the Winhawks. Brittany asked Jacob’s mom, Debbie, if Jacob would be able to come by the party to say hi. 

And that’s just what Jacob did, although he brought five of his friends — Wesley Wollan, Ben Rustad, Graham Engrav, Brayden McDevitt and Tommy Modjeski — all wearing their orange Winhawk jerseys. The smiles on the players’ faces were almost as wide as the smiles on the faces of McCoy and his friends. 

“I hope those players know how meaningful it was,” Brittany said. “For them to take the time out of their day to make a memory for those boys, expecting nothing in return, is what being a good role model is all about.

“I know my son will remember this for years to come.”

The Winhawks next home game is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18 against Byron.