News From Terre Haute, Indiana

October 8, 2012

North vs. South: City schools stay home (sort of) to open sectional

South will go on road, but stay in city for first-round game

Todd Golden
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Sequels have been all the rage in Hollywood for several years, but when it comes to Terre Haute high school football, sequels don’t occur very often.

That will change Oct. 19.

For the first time since 2003, Terre Haute North and Terre Haute South drew each other for an Indiana High School Athletic Association sectional game. North (4-4) will play host to South (2-6) on Oct. 19 in a Class 5A Sectional 6 game.

The matchup occurs at the bottom of the Sectional 6 bracket, so the winner will likely play at home in the next round. The North-South winner plays the winner of Decatur Central-Avon.

How will this sequel play out? The Braves hope it’s a reboot of the series and the Patriots undoubtedly would like to maintain the spirit of the original, which saw North win 27-10 on Aug. 24 at Memorial Stadium.

“Anytime you play North-South it’s going to be crazy. I’m excited about it,” North coach Chris Barrett said.

Barrett acknowledged the juice a rematch will have, but stressed that the Sectional 6 field is so rugged that no matter who North would have drawn, it would have been a game to get up for.

“You always have that rivalry excitement about the game, but when you look at everyone in our sectional, there’s not really a good draw,” Barrett said. “The best part is we’re at home and at bottom of bracket, so there could be another home game if we’re fortunate to win out.”

South coach Mark Raetz is also looking forward to another shot at the Patriots.

“We’re excited about it. Obviously the first game didn’t go as well for us. We had several kids get injured and we gave up the lead in the second half,” Raetz said. “A lot happens between Week 2 and Week 10, kids learn, injuries force kids into different roles. It’s going to be a different game this time around. I think we’re getting more healthy.”

North and South have played each other six times in postseason play, with each winning three games. Only twice has the regular-season winner lost in the rematch — in 1986 (North won the rematch) and 2002 (South). It’ll be the first time South has played at North since 1998.

Barrett coached in the 2002 and 2003 sectional games. He’s hoping the community is as excited about the rematch as players on both teams will be.

“The unfortunate thing about playing them in the tournament is there’s 6,000-to-8,000 in the regular season game, but every time we’ve played in sectional, it’s been 1,500. It’s not as hyped up. It is for players, but it’s unfortunate the community doesn’t keep enthusiasm as the season goes on, but I think it might be different this time,” Barrett said.

North and South isn’t the only rematch on the cards for a Vigo County school. It’s not even the only Week 2 rematch.

West Vigo (5-3) will play host to unbeaten Greencastle in a Class 3A Sectional 21 showdown. The Tiger Cubs are the fifth-ranked team in the 3A ranks.

The Vikings lost to the Tiger Cubs 44-0 on Aug. 24, but the Vikings were in flux at the time with injuries and have since solidified. West Vigo has won three of its last four games.

“We had so many new kids at that time. We were still kind of scrambling to get a QB situated. We’re a lot different team now,” West Vigo coach Jeff Cobb said. “It’s going to be good for the kids, because they want to prove they weren’t as bad as the final score indicated. Greencastle has only given up two touchdowns all season, but I think we can do better than we did.”

Elsewhere, Class A No. 2 Linton will play at North Knox in a Sectional 40 first-round matchup. Class A No. 9 North Central plays host to Turkey Run and could have a rematch with Class A No. 7 North Vermillion in the second round. The Falcons play at Covington.

Northview plays at Class 4A No. 4 Cathedral in Sectional 14 showdown. South Vermillion plays at Class 2A No. 1 Indianapolis Ritter in a Sectional 30 meeting.

Sullivan plays host to South Spencer, and if it won, would host Forest Park in the second round. The Rangers earned a bye.