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GEFA To Hold Opening Weekend Games At Central Columbia On March 23

GEFA To Hold Opening Weekend Games At Central Columbia On March 23

March 16, 2024 Billy Splain

The GEFA League begins play on March 23 at Central Columbia High School Stadium. Admission is $5, 12 and under are free. The Rob Marrera Memorial Kickoff Classic begins at 1:00 p.m. with the Titans vs the Miners. Then at 3:30 p.m. the Raptors take on the Buffaloes and at 6:00 p.m. the Wilkes-Barre Warriors take on the Wildcats. There will also be a free Easter Egg Hunt.

The Great Eastern Football Association is an 8-man football league that has been around since 2005 in one form or another. The PFL/6 debuted with a five-game regular season between two teams, North Penn Energy and Susquehanna Valley Stallions, and a non league team, Mount Gretna Mountaineers. The inaugural game was played in Millersburg and saw the Susquehanna Valley Stallions defeat the North Penn Energy, 35-14. Since then the league has grown in size and this year boasts 11 teams based all over the state of PA.

• The GEFA is America's longest continuously-running non-profit eight man amateur league and begins its 20th consecutive season of play in 2024.

• There are currently 11 teams in the GEFA and additional expansion is expected in the coming years.

• GEFA teams will play a 10-game schedule in 2024 with each team having five home games and five road games. The season concludes with a playoff and the "The Keystone Bowl," held last year at Kutztown University.

• The GEFA includes the longest run 8-man team in the country, the Williamsport Wildcats, who will be playing their 19th season in 2024.

• The GEFA is led by President James Simerson. He enters his sixth season as President in 2024 after being a GEFA coach, team owner, GEFA secretary, GEFA treasurer, and GEFA Vice President.

GEFA Mission Statement

"To serve our community with pride and passion as a quality example of individual and team excellence on the field, in the office, at the field and within the community by consistently exceeding expectations by demonstrating the highest character, appreciation and respect for our game, fans, teammates and partners as a visionary organization providing a total pro-like experience."

The teams are comprised of players of all ages from PA and other states. Players are not payed and for now, admission to most games is free. The teams are privately owned and are funded by the owners and sponsors. The field itself is 70 yards by 35 yards with the 25 being midfield. Each team has 8 players on the field on both offense and defense.

Justin Kurpeikas is likely one of the most famous GEFA members, having played for the State College Little Lions, Penn State and the Steelers. In 2004, Kurpeikis was a member of the Super Bowl champion Patriots. In the GEFA, he played for the DuBois Mountain Lions for five seasons (2011-2015).