She was the subject of a controversial post that went viral, but Midland Dow's kicker Ashton Brooks had bigger things to worry about on the gridiron.

Ashton took the field for the Chargers in a playoff match-up with Bay City Central.

Everyone at the stadium knew the story that came to light earlier this week, but on Friday Ashton had a community behind her.

On the first drive of the game the Chargers punched it in for a touchdown. Just like she has all season, Ashton came out to kick the extra point and she made it.

The community roared in support after a very trying week for the 17-year-old. It gave her mother quite a bit of satisfaction.

"I'm so proud of her and all the support has been awesome. It's just exciting to see," April Brooks said.

Ashton was forced into the spotlight when a racist social media post surfaced. It showed a white woman posing with a person in a gorilla suit. The captain said "got a pic with dows kicker ;)."

"Sometimes we do things for the reaction of other people, rather [than] what's deep in our heart," said Crystal King, parent of a Dow High School student.

Ashton didn't seem to let the post bother her. She celebrated good plays and got on her teammates after a bad snap. She was even upset with herself when she missed a field goal.

"I think yes, this will bind everyone together and make them know that racism has no place in our communities," said Rose Martin, Dow High School parent.

Ashton's mother said that's what Ashton hopes for too.

"We've got nothing but support from the school, the community, the team. Everybody has been awesome. We appreciate that and I know she does too," April Brooks said.

Copyright 2016 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Digital Content Producer

Recommended for you