American football in the CNMI was revived this year.
The Commonwealth Football League Association made it happen, forming an adult team that played against a selection from Guam at the Airport Field in May. The CNMI Sharks-Guam tussle was the first tackle football match played at the pitch since 2002.
CFLA also brought back peewee football in the Commonwealth and kicked off its youth league in November. Three teams are playing in the CFLA Youth Football Warrior/Midget League—the Eastern Lightning, Northern Saints, and Southern Thunder. The Lightning is on top of the league with its unbeaten 3-0 record.
The Eastern Lightning is coached by Dave Ada, who is joined by defensive coordinator Jaime Martinez, offensive coordinator Al-Lee Terry, and assistant coach Jay Tilipao. Southern Thunder is coached by Jermaine Catching, who is assisted by Mike Tenorio, Clyde Kaipat, Alvin Taitano, and Syl Teregeyo. Calling the shots for the Northern Saints are head coach Vince Castro, defensive coordinator Joe Ocampo, and assistant coach Darryl Atalig.