By Reg Chapman

Gallery: Meet the Valkyrie

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Ready or not Lingerie Football has come to the Twin Cities. The Minnesota Valkyrie are brand new to the Lingerie Football League and quickly making an impact.

While they on Friday night to the L.A. Temptation, a couple of former standout track stars that are making an impact on and off the field for this new team.

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It’s being called the fastest growing sports league in the nation — 7-on-7 full-contact football.

It’s being played by women who wear sports bras, shorts and glass-front helmets. The Minnesota Valkyrie are the newest franchise in this 11-team Lingerie Football League.

They are led by former Vikings lineman Everett Lindsey.

“They are true athletes and that’s how I treat them and that’s how I look at them,” Lindsey said.

He said 85 percent of the Valkyrie players are college graduates. All were athletes but his biggest challenge is coaching them up

“It’s teaching them the game of football and just all the intricacies of the game,” he said.

They’ve learned quickly beating Green Bay in their season opener. The head coach said he’s proud of his athletes and the work they do in the community; especially the Govrick twins.

“Tiger and Panther. They’re two little fire plugs. They bring a lot of energy to this team,” Lindsey said.

Their real names are Elizabeth and Teresa Govrick. They’re former Minnesota state track champions from Washburn High School. Back in 2004, they were part of the state champion 4×100 and 4×200 relay teams.

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They went on to run track and play soccer at South Carolina State University, where they both graduated. Now they mentor athletes at the high school where it all began where it also gives them a chance to learn more about their passion.

“I watched them practice on this field and gave them a little pointers,” said Washburn High School football player Jason Williams.

They say playing lingerie football fills a void in their lives.

“We were Division I athletes in college so it’s like to come back and yea we can play pick-up soccer, we can run with our kids and stuff, but it’s not that competitiveness that we’re not getting it,” said Elizabeth. “So I think playing in this competitive, tough sport that gives us that edge back and that’s why we do it.”

But what about the uniform, or lack thereof? Elizabeth and Teresa say it’s not an issue.

“We both ran track and I was wearing, you know, stuff if not close to almost smaller than what I’m wearing out on the football field,” said Elizabeth. “You take beach volleyball, you take volleyball, you take other sports where it’s pretty much the same thing. Its just the name Lingerie Football League.”

These athletes say if you take away the lingerie, what you have left is good old American football.

“You never think of women playing football. Even now were like ‘Oh my gosh that is not real football.’ But it is. You have to really watch it,” said Teresa. “Like my sister said take out the lingerie part and we’re hitting and doing everything that guys do in this sport ”

If you think this is powder puff football, think again. During their first game, the star running back tore her ACL. She’s out for the entire season.

These women want you to look beyond the uniforms and see they love this game and play it well. The Minnesota Valkyrie players work full-time jobs and still practice 30 to 35 hours a week. They do not get paid for being on the team.

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Their next home game is the home finale at Target Center on Saturday Nov. 19 when they play Chicago.

Reg Chapman