Rivalry Between All 3 Francis Howell Schools

By admin

Ever since FHC was established in 1997, a true rivalry has existed in the FHSD between FHN, FHC and FHHS. This rivalry spans from all sports played throughout the school year. This year, with the new GAC alignment, each team is required to play each opposing school both at home and away.

“A rivalry doesn’t exist when one school beats another over and over again,” FHN Activities Director Mike Janes said. “It’s that constant back and forth.”

The beginning of this rivalry originally stemmed from the location of the three schools. There are only 10.7 miles between FHN and FHHS, and FHC falls right in the middle. Most students at the three schools are familiar with one another because of the boundaries of the elementary and middle schools.

“I think the rivalry is natural,” Janes said. “The kids grew up together going to the same schools before high school. That’s where the rivalry stems from.”

The pressure is clearly present when any of  these three schools come up on each other’s schedules. According to Janes, sportsmanship in these games are always good, but there is more pressure on the athletes during these games.

“I think you do put a lot of pressure on yourself and the team,” Janes said. “But once the game starts the rivalry goes to the back of your mind.”

With this new alignment and the rivals coming up on each others’ schedules the tension grows. Junior football player Ethan Bond has been playing since his freshman year. He feels that the older one gets the more they feel the rivalry, and it becomes their number one priority.

“It’s something that will always be there,” Bond said. “It’s unavoidable, but it’s good that it is because it brings out the best in every athlete no matter the sport.” According to FHC Activities Director Scott Harris, these can be very tense and emotional games, and the fans only add to the excitement. All three schools have a fan base that represent the schools’ teams at different games within seasons. “

All our kids compete and are excited about every game, but when it is our sister schools there is more motivation,” Harris said. “The games mean a lot more”

All three athletic directors are on a common ground when it comes to keeping the games a clean, safe and fun environment for all. According to FHHS Activities Director Dave Witter, a negative atmosphere at games deters from the kids on the court as well as reflects negatively on the school.

“Cheer for your school and leave everything else alone,” Witter said.

Creating a positive atmosphere it makes a game enjoyable for all who are there. All three FHSD schools have large dedicated fan base. When the scores get higher and closer excitement grows within the stands, and the true feelings of the rivalry are unleashed.

“I think the rivalry between all the schools is intense,” senior Sami Ritter said. “I feel that especially our school gets very into it, cheering for their own team to win. It doesn’t matter what sporting event it is. It is always packed with screaming fans.”

With so many supportive fans at sporting events, all athletic directors work to create the positive sportsmanship, while remaining optimistic.

“For the most part, a good kid at Howell is the same as a good kid at Central and a good kid at North,” Witter said.