|Team history||D.C. Divas (2001-present)|
|Based in||Landover, Maryland|
|Stadium||Prince George's Sports and Learning Complex|
|Colors||Burgundy, gold, white|
|Head coach||Alison Fischer|
|Championships||1 (NWFA: 2006)|
|Division titles||10 (NWFA: 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006)
(IWFL: 2007, 2009, 2010)
(WFA: 2011, 2012, 2013)
The D.C. Divas are a football team in the Women's Football Alliance. Based in the Washington Metropolitan Area, the Divas play their home games in Landover (where the NFL's Washington Redskins' home stadium FedEx Field is located) at Prince George's Sports and Learning Complex.
The Divas were formed in 2000 as one of the ten charter franchises of the National Women's Football Association. The Divas were the first women's football team in the nation's capital and were coached by Ezra Cooper. The Divas' first win came on May 13, 2001, with a 10-6 victory at home over the Connecticut Crush. The Divas finished their inaugural season with a 3-4 record, the team's only losing season to date.
The Divas were purchased by Lee Fahringer and Kelly George before their second season. The Divas finished the 2002 season with a 5-3 record, the first of six consecutive winning seasons for the team. A chance at the Divas' first playoff berth came down their final game of the year, but the Divas fell short of the Baltimore Burn in their season finale, 6-0.
The 2003 season is considered by many to be the birth of the Divas' dynasty. Finishing the regular-season 7-1, the team clinched their first of five consecutive playoff berths and division titles. After defeating the Connecticut Crush in their first ever playoff game, the Divas fell to the Philadelphia Phoenix in the conference semifinals. The Divas' Donna Wilkinson became the first running back in women's football history to eclipse 1,000 rushing yards in a single season, totaling 1,267 rushing yards in 2003. That year, the Divas were featured on CBS Evening News.
Winning their second consecutive division title by finishing 8-0, the Divas clinched home-field advantage throughout the Northern Conference playoffs. After defeating the Southwest Michigan Jaguars in the conference semifinals, the Divas lost to the eventual NWFA champions, the Detroit Demolition, in the Northern Conference championship game, 20-14.
Following the season, the Divas played in a charity game against a men's team assembled by The Sports Junkies, who host a local syndicated sports radio show. Although the Divas lost, 28-6, the contest set a new record for the highest attendance at a women's football game, as 8,200 fans came to the event. Later that offseason, the Divas had a second ownership change when Paul Hamlin, father of Divas' quarterback Allyson Hamlin, bought the team.
For the second consecutive season, the Divas finished the regular season with a perfect 8-0 record. For the second straight year, however, they were handed their first defeat of the season in the Northern Conference championship game by eventual NWFA champion Detroit.
After that season, the Divas moved from Eastern High School in Washington, D.C. to the new Prince George's Sports and Learning Complex in nearby Landover, Maryland, and a new uniform design was also unveiled. These changes set the stage for the biggest moment in the franchise's history.
As was the case the past two seasons, the Divas finished 2006 with a perfect 8-0 regular season record and advanced to the conference championship game. Unlike '04 and '05, however, the Divas won the conference championship, defeating the Columbus Comets and advancing their first ever league championship game. The Divas traveled to Pittsburgh to take on the Oklahoma City Lightning for the 2006 NWFA national championship. The Divas capped an 11-0 season with a 28-7 victory over the Lightning for the team's first ever league championship. Running back Rachelle Pecovsky and linebacker Ivy Tillman received the game's MVP honors on offense and defense, respectively.
Before the 2007 season, the Divas left the NWFA to join the Independent Women's Football League. The Divas were just as successful in this new league, however, finishing with an 8-0 regular season record for the fourth straight year and capturing the Mid-Atlantic Division title. However, their playoff run ended abruptly when the Divas lost in the conference semifinal round to the eventual Eastern Conference champion Atlanta Xplosion.
2008 was a disappointing year for the Divas. The season began with a loss to the Boston Militia, 27-22, which snapped the Divas' 32-game regular season winning streak. That was a sign of things to come, as the Divas lost four games in 2008, each by six points or less. They finished the year with a 4-4 record, their worst since 2001. Because of that record, the Divas failed to win their division and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2002.
Rebounding from the 2008 season, the Divas returned to their winning ways in 2009. The Divas compiled a perfect 8-0 regular season record for the fifth time and claimed the Mid-Atlantic division title. The Divas had home field advantage throughout the playoffs, but because of a scheduling conflict at their home field, they had to travel to Boston to play the Militia in the 2009 IWFL Eastern Conference championship game. In a thrilling game, the Divas defeated the Militia, 27-21, giving the franchise just their second conference championship (and their first in the IWFL). On July 25, the Divas went to Round Rock, Texas, a suburb of Austin, to play for the 2009 IWFL World Championship. The Western Conference champion Kansas City Tribe pulled a 21-18 upset and handed the Divas their first loss of the season, taking home the IWFL championship in the process.
2010 was another successful season for the Divas. Despite finishing the regular season at 5-3 (two games behind the 7-1 Atlanta Xplosion), a stronger overall schedule gave the Divas the division crown, their seventh in team history. The Divas then justified their place in the division in the conference semifinals, defeating the Xplosion, 35-7, and getting some revenge for the playoff loss in 2007. However, it was the Milita who got revenge in the 2010 Eastern Conference championship game, avenging the previous season's defeat by eliminating the Divas; the Militia went on to win the 2010 IWFL national championship.
That season, the Divas were featured on CNN as part of a team profile. Also that season, former Diva wide receiver Natalie Randolph made national headlines as one of the first female head coaches of a high school football team.
Along with many of their archrivals, the D.C. Divas moved from the IWFL to the Women's Football Alliance for the 2011 season. In their first year in the new league, the Divas didn't slow down, easily winning the Northeast Division with a 7-1 record. However, for the second year in a row, the eventual league champion Boston Militia ended the Divas' season by knocking them out of the playoffs.
After the season, the Divas made a change, hiring Alison Fischer as their new head coach. Fischer played on the Divas' first team in 2001 and became one of the few female head coaches in women's pro football.
In a situation similar to 2010, the Divas, with a 5-3 record, claimed a division title over 7-1 Pittsburgh thanks to a stronger strength of schedule. Once again, the Divas proved that was the correct decision by defeating Pittsburgh in the playoffs and advancing to the conference semifinals.
For the fourth straight year, the Divas clashed with the Boston Militia in the playoffs, and for the third straight time, the Militia came out on top, this time by a 55-34 score. But this time emotions spilled over, and the game ended in a bench-clearing brawl which attracted negative media attention and resulted in several suspensions by the league against Divas players.
For the third time in four seasons, the Divas finished the regular season with a 5-3 record. The Divas also won their tenth division title, which tied the record for the most division championships all-time in women's football by a single franchise. The D.C. Divas advanced to the conference semifinals, where they were eliminated for the fourth consecutive season by the Boston Militia.
The D.C. Divas will begin their 14th season of play on April 5, 2014.
|D.C. Divas (NWFA)|
|2003||7||1||0||1st North Mid-Atlantic||Won Eastern Conference Quarterfinal (Connecticut)
Lost Eastern Conference Semifinal (Philadelphia)
|2004||8||0||0||1st North Mid-Atlantic||Won Northern Conference Semifinal (SW Michigan)
Lost Northern Conference Championship (Detroit)
|2005||8||0||0||1st North Mid-Atlantic||Won Northern Conference Semifinal (Mass.)
Lost Northern Conference Championship (Detroit)
|2006||8||0||0||1st East Mid-Atlantic||Won Eastern Conference Semifinal (Chattanooga)
Won Eastern Conference Championship (Columbus)
Won NWFA Championship (Oklahoma City)
|D.C. Divas (IWFL)|
|2007||8||0||0||1st East Mid-Atlantic||Lost Eastern Conference Semifinal (Atlanta)|
|2008||4||4||0||4th Tier I East North Atlantic||--|
|2009||8||0||0||1st Tier I East Mid-Atlantic||Won Eastern Conference Semifinal (Pittsburgh)
Won Eastern Conference Championship (Boston)
Lost IWFL Tier I World Championship (Kansas City)
|2010||5||3||0||1st Tier I East Southeast||Won Southeast Division Championship (Atlanta)
Lost Eastern Conference Championship (Boston)
|D.C. Divas (WFA)|
|2011||7||1||0||1st National Northeast||Lost National Conference Quarterfinal (Boston)|
|2012||5||3||0||1st National Division 3||Won National Conference Quarterfinal (Pittsburgh)
Lost National Conference Semifinal (Boston)
|2013||5||3||0||1st National Division 2||Won National Conference Quarterfinal (Columbus)
Lost National Conference Semifinal (Boston)
* = current standing
D.C. Divas alphabetical roster
updated March 20, 2014
Season Schedules and Standings
|April 11||Baltimore Nighthawks||Away||Won 33-0|
|April 25||Detroit Demolition||Away||Won 35-0|
|May 2||Pittsburgh Passion||Home||Won 27-7|
|May 16||New York Sharks||Away||Won 21-7|
|May 23||Baltimore Nighthawks||Home||Won 70-14|
|May 30||Philadelphia Firebirds||Away||Won 42-0|
|June 6||New York Sharks||Home||Won 34-18|
|June 13||Philadelphia Firebirds||Home||Won 63-0|
|June 27||Pittsburgh Passion (Eastern Conference Semifinal)||Home||Won 27-17|
|July 11||Boston Militia (Eastern Conference Championship)||Away||Won 27-21|
|July 25||Kansas City Tribe (IWFL Tier I World Championship)||Neutral (Round Rock)||Lost 18-21|
|April 10||Baltimore Nighthawks||Home||Won 54-6|
|April 17||New York Sharks||Away||Lost 13-19|
|April 24||Philadelphia Firebirds||Away||Won 1-0**|
|May 1||Boston Militia||Home||Lost 35-42|
|May 8||Baltimore Nighthawks||Away||Won 28-7|
|May 22||New York Nemesis||Home||Won 49-21|
|May 29||Philadelphia Firebirds||Home||Won 49-3|
|June 5||Boston Militia||Away||Lost 36-52|
|June 12||Atlanta Xplosion (Southeast Division Championship)||Home||Won 35-7|
|July 10||Boston Militia (Eastern Conference Championship)||Away||Lost 0-28|
** Won by forfeit as a result of the IWFL's season reduction for the Firebirds
|2011 Northeast Division|
|Philadelphia Liberty Belles||2||6||0||0.250||137||219||1-3||5.0||L4|
|April 2||Boston Militia||Home||Won 35-20|
|April 9||Keystone Assault||Home||Won 55-6|
|April 16||Philadelphia Liberty Belles||Home||Won 20-0|
|April 30||Keystone Assault||Away||Won 49-0|
|May 7||Northeastern Nitro||Home||Won 77-0|
|May 21||Philadelphia Liberty Belles||Away||Won 42-0|
|June 11||Boston Militia||Away||Lost 16-27|
|June 18||New York Sharks||Away||Won 38-16|
|June 25||Boston Militia (National Conference Quarterfinal)||Home||Lost 24-37|
|2012 Division 3|
|April 14||Pittsburgh Passion||Home||Lost 34-35|
|April 28||New York Sharks||Home||Won 41-12|
|May 5||Columbus Comets||Home||Won 49-0|
|May 12||New York Sharks||Away||Won 41-12|
|May 19||Boston Militia||Away||Lost 7-44|
|June 2||Pittsburgh Passion||Away||Won 43-28|
|June 9||Boston Militia||Home||Lost 25-32|
|June 16||Columbus Comets||Away||Won 42-0|
|June 30||Pittsburgh Passion (National Conference Quarterfinal)||Home||Won 45-30|
|July 7||Boston Militia (National Conference Semifinal)||Away||Lost 34-55|