The Grant Pacer football team, forever a source of pride and success, took on new meaning in 2012 inside their community. Beset by impediments on the field and tragedies off the field, the 2012 Pacers are always in danger of being pulled apart. Losses pile up more frequently than any in memory, heartache and real life tragedy forever live in the hearts of this team, yet the family that the Pacers yearn to be stands out greatest in the worst of times.
The star player for the 2012 Pacers, Trayvon knows the knocks of growing up in The Heights amidst little opportunity. But from a young age Trayvon worked to achieve success and make it to the next level, a dream that now hangs in the balance of a difficult senior season, where personal success is overshadowed by team tragedy and his own struggle to stay ahead in the classroom and on the recruiting trail. A role model for his doting little sister, infant brother and entire family, Trayvon tries to lead the team while earning the respect of the community as the next Pacer great.
The heart and soul of the Pacers, Jonah is coming off a devastating knee injury the previous season and fighting his way back to live up to the immense expectations he puts on himself and from his older brothers, Pacer greats before him. Trying to earn a scholarship while keeping active in his family's church and the Polynesian community, Jonah leads his team through the emotions of crushing defeats on the field and tragic losses off the field. With the support of his tight-knit family, can Jonah find the success he always believed would follow him as a Pacer?
Isaiah, the starting QB for the 2012 Pacers, always dreamed of being a Pacer great. His dreams began to come true when he transferred from a nearby high school before his Junior year. But living up to the expectations of a family pulled apart by the sudden and tragic death of his father, Isaiah must fight to balance the responsibility of helping raise his younger siblings at home, excel in the classroom, and lead his team on the field. When Isaiah steps on the field every friday night he plays to honor his father's name.
Mike Alberghini, "Coach Al" as he is affectionately known, has seen it all in 43 years of coaching at the school. From years of success on the baseball field to bringing the football team to unprecedented heights, including a State Championship, Coach Al has built a program in a community where poverty and crime are the other known quantities. Coach Al leads the Pacers with the ferocity of a charging linebacker and the soft touch of a father consoling his son. Giving these student athletes the tools to succeed in life and giving back to a school that has given him so much is front and center in Coach Al's coaching strategy. Working alongside his son and 5 former players, the word family comes into focus for a group of young men fighting the temptations of a tough neighborhood while reaching for the dreams of Friday Nights and the privilege to be called a Pacer For Life.
Equally influential on the lives of his players, Coach Harris can relate to growing up in a place where football is the way out of the neighborhood and the opportunity to separate from the crowd. Having played Division 1 college football himself, Harris instills discipline and dedication in his players on the field, while infusing a never give up attitude to their lives off the field. Through his own experience as a college student-athlete, Harris made a commitment to education first as a path to success, a theme he learned the hard way, now a common bond shared by all in the Pacer family.