It was no ordinary football game Saturday when St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute took on Turner-Carroll High School in the season opener. Just ask St. Joe's coach Bob O'Connor.
His star running back, Sandro DeAngelis -- Western New York's Player of the Year last year -- was determined to make the 2 p.m. game even though he first had to stand up in his brother, Steve's, wedding in Niagara Falls, Ont., two hours earlier.
The noon wedding was held, and then Sandro, 17, and some of his family dashed out before the photographs were taken to make the kickoff. The DeAngelis family lives in Niagara Falls, Ont.
Sandro scored five touchdowns as St. Joe's trounced Turner-Carroll, 64-0, but the big hit came when his brother's wedding party showed up at the game at 2:30 in full wedding attire, sitting in the top row of the bleachers, and stayed for the entire game.
The bride, Andree DeAngelis, was there in her gown, accompanied by the groom, their wedding attendants in tuxes and the bridesmaids in their maroon dresses.
The wedding colors -- maroon and white -- matched those of St. Joe's.
The family told Steve DeAngelis last spring not to plan the wedding when football season starts because "we have to get our priorities straight," O'Connor recalled, laughing. "Sandro said as soon as the ceremony was over, he'd have to leave and wouldn't be there for the pictures."
"His mother said, 'I'm going to the game, too,' " O'Connor said. Sandro's 90-year-old grandmother even made the game.
Sandro is the youngest in his family, and "the parents were like, 'we're going where the baby is,' " O'Connor said.
Sandro had promised his brother he would score four touchdowns for him, which he did. He also got off to a good start with his new sister-in-law, making a touchdown on a kickoff return, as she had requested.
"He's been the most valuable player on our team for the past two years," O'Connor said.
Once the game was over, the family's attention turned back to the wedding, and they all headed to Welland, Ont., for an evening reception.