Moody: Carson-Douglas ready to renew rivalry Friday
When it comes to football rivalries in Northern Nevada you won’t find any better than Carson-Douglas, and guess what, it’s that time again.
The two rivals tee it up Friday at 7 p.m., and I would expect a sellout crowd. The freshmen and JV squads will be playing a doubleheader on Thursday night at Carson.
This is my eighth “Big Game” and it’s a contest I always look forward to it with great anticipation.
Carson has won the last two games ± 34-6 in 2009 and 16-13 in 2010 – and probably would be considered a favorite in this year’s game.
For Carson players Logan Peternell, Dylan Sawyers and Austin Pacheco, this game represents a unique opportunity. The trio could end their Carson varsity careers without losing to Douglas.
“It’s one of our goals; what we prepare for every year,” said Peternell minutes after Saturday’s thrilling 27-24 win over Bishop Manogue. “You don’t care whether you make the playoffs, you just want to beat your rival. That would make the season.”
“It would be huge,” said Pacheco, who kicked a 64-yard field goal on Saturday. “We just have to take it step by step and get ready.”
Pacheco played a big role in last year’s game, kicking three field goals, including one in overtime, to beat the Tigers 16-13. That kick was his first game-winner as a varsity player.
On Saturday, when the teams lined up to shake hands, Pacheco was one of the last Carson players in line. Several of the Manogue players congratulated him on his kick which I thought was very classy.
There are several tie-ins between the rival schools.
Carson coach Blair Roman was a quarterback for the Douglas Tigers between 1983 and 1987, Carson athletic director Bob Bateman was a former assistant under current Douglas coach Mike Rippee and Carson dean Joe Girdner was a standout athlete at Douglas and was recently inducted into the Tigers’ Hall of Fame. Former Douglas baseball coach John Glover graduated from Carson High School.
It’s interesting when you look at the background of this series. Carson has a commanding 45-21-3 edge, but Douglas coach Mike Rippee has held his own with a 13-13 record since taking over the head job back in 1985.
Each team has had their share of long winning streak in the rivalry. Carson won the first seven games starting back in 1923. The Senators also went undefeated in a 11-year span (1952 to 1979). The teams didn’t play each other 1958, 1959, 1961, 1962 and then from 1967 to 1978. Carson also put together a nice six-game win streak from 1982 to 1987.
It’s interesting to note that Douglas never won more than two straight in the series until just recently when it won every game from 2002 to 2008. The Tigers owned the series back then, winning six of the seven by double-digit margins. The closest game in that seven-year span was a 19-12 win on a neutral field in 2006.
One thing I’ve often wondered is why natural rivalry games like Carson-Douglas aren’t played the last week of the season. It doesn’t make any sense to me.
Back in my days in Antioch, Calif., the big rival was Pittsburg and that game was played last or next-to-last every year. You couldn’t find a seat. Both stadiums seated around 6,500 and were always packed by halftime of the JV game.
I’d love to see this game played every year on Nevada Day weekend, whether you play it right after the parade or later that night.
I hope that the two communities turn out for the game in support of these two fine programs.
Carson High principal Ron Beck said that he is proposing that all Carson home games from now on would be varsity-only games starting at 7, and that freshmen and JV games would be on Thursdays.
I think that varsity coaches will like that because they know that the game will start on time, and that they can do all their warming up on the main field. Personally, I’d like to see all 4A schools adapt that.