Elkton and Bo Manor an­nounce new Battle of 213 Tro­phy

Cecil Whig - - SPORTS - By JOR­DAN SCHATZ

jschatz@ce­cil­whig.com

— Bragging rights is no longer enough for a pair of Ce­cil County high schools in­volved in one of the area’s more spir­ited grid­iron ri­val­ries.

The Elkton and Bo­hemia Manor foot­ball teams an­nounced this week the in­tro­duc­tion of the Battle of 213 Tro­phy that will be pre­sented every year to the win­ner of the an­nual game be­tween the two pro­grams.

The tro­phy, jointly de­signed by Bo Manor head coach Joe Graf and Elkton head coach Matt Feeney, will be un­veiled Thurs­day

CH­E­SA­PEAKE CITY

dur­ing the game be­tween the two teams. The high schools, sep­a­rated by a nine-mile stretch of Route 213, have com­bined for 19 play­off ap­pear­ances and two state cham­pi­onships since 2000.

“It’s fun. I know it’s been in our thoughts for a few years try­ing to get some­thing like this [cre­ated] for two teams that his­tor­i­cally are very good year in and year out,” Graf said. “Be­ing in two dif­fer­ent clas­si­fi­ca­tions has maybe hurt the ri­valry a lit­tle bit, but in terms of Ce­cil County, this is still one of the best games year in and year out.”

The fi­nal de­sign for the tro­phy was an ob­vi­ous choice by both sides.

The teams will battle for con­trol of a sledge­ham­mer, which fea­tures “Battle of 213” painted on the side. Each year, the game’s win­ning team will be pre­sented with the tro­phy at the con­clu­sion of the con­test.

“[We wanted to come] up with a sym­bol that re­ally rep­re­sents both of our pro­grams. We use the sledge­ham­mer as one of our sym­bols and they use the ‘ sledge’ as their sym­bol. What bet­ter thing to do then to say, ‘We’re go­ing to play for this each year?’ That’s go­ing to be the tro­phy that’s go­ing to be on the line,” Feeney said. “Coach Graf did a great job, he painted it up and it’s got “Battle of 213” on it. That’s the thing that we came up with to­gether talk­ing. It’s just ex­cit­ing, the kids are buy­ing in. I love it.

“I would love to see all the county teams have some­thing be­cause we play each other every year. It will be great to have that, but I think what Joe and I did there, it’s go­ing to be great for the kids for a long time.”

The team that wins will have the priv­i­lege of dec­o­rat­ing the tro­phy, in­clud­ing paint­ing, adding the fi­nal score and even writ­ing the names of the play­ers on the sledge­ham­mer. It will then be placed in the school’s tro­phy case for an en­tire year be­fore it’s once again up for grabs when both ri­vals com­pete the fol­low­ing fall.

“Coach Feeney and I talked a lit­tle bit over the sum­mer about get­ting some­thing started like Havre de Grace and Per­ryville do with the Susque­hanna Bowl,” Graf said. “We’re ba­si­cally right next door to each other and know each other well and most of the time we’re friends. We root for each other ex­cept for one game a year.”

When the two teams meet Thurs­day, it will fea­ture a pair of squads hop­ing to bet­ter po­si­tion them­selves for the play­offs. The Golden Elks (6-1) are at­tempt­ing to main­tain their foothold in an ul­tra-com­pet­i­tive 2A East Re­gion race, while the Eagles (5-2) are set­ting their sights on cap­tur­ing home field ad­van­tage in the 1A East post­sea­son.

“There’s a long his­tory there. I don’t think any two foot­ball teams have won more big games in Ce­cil County than our two teams. Theres’ a lot of fa­mil­iar­ity on both sides,” Feeney said. “It is a sto­ried ri­valry.”

Fol­low Jor­dan Schatz on Twit­ter: @Jor­dan_Whig

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