By Char Telcamp, Groton Independent
The rivalry between Groton High School and Roncalli High School has been voted one of the top rivalries in the Midwest region, a distinction that has put them in the running for cash awards for both schools’ athletic programs.
USA Today High School Sports conducted a state-by-state contest to determine who has the best rivalry in each state, which ended Dec. 3. The three rivalries in the South Dakota contest were Brookings vs Watertown, Groton vs Roncalli and SF Roosevelt vs SF Washington. Groton/Roncalli was the state winner, and so was entered into a regional contest. This contest will end Wednesday, Dec. 12.
This is what the USA Today website said about the Groton/Roncalli rivalry:
“Private (Roncalli) vs. public (Groton), small town (Groton) vs. big town (Aberdeen), this one has a little of it all. Northeast Conference foes have played for high stakes in the last decade. Roncalli won Class 11B in 2005 and 2006, and Groton was the state runner-up in 2007 and 2008. In 2007-08, Groton avenged a regular-season loss to Roncalli in the postseason. When Roncalli and Groton meet, it’s a big draw from several other surrounding towns as well.”
All of these rivalries represent decades, and sometimes more than a century, of the greatest competition, and plenty of bad blood. But now those communities must bind together to win a state (and perhaps a national) title. USA Today is asking these bitter rivals to play together on one team for one common goal. And then they can go back to despising one another.
Four winners from the regional contest will emerge for the national competition, which will conclude with the crowning of the nation’s top high school football rivalry at 11 a.m. EST on Dec. 19. The national winner will receive $10,000, to be split evenly between the two schools.
People can vote as many times as they want. (Consider pulling it up and voting if you have a dull meeting to attend, or perhaps while watching TV—and pass on the link to your friends.) To vote, go to http://contest.usatodayhss.com/.