My 6 sons have played for Hurricane and against Winfield in Midget Leagues, Middle School and High School dating back to 1998. As I look back at this rivalry over the years one aspect of the results seem puzzling to me. Why were the game relatively evenly matched at the midget and middle school levels, yet dominated by Hurricane at the high school level.
This domination did not exist at the lower levels of play. I recall many middle school games that the Generals not only beat the Redskins but did so in convincing fashion. In fact Hurricane's senior class were beat not once but twice by Winfield when they were 7th graders.
But looking at the competition at the high school level the last quarter century and it has been no competition.
Check out these numbers:
Hurricane has won 8 in a row.
Hurricane has won 22 of the last 23 games
Hurricane has shut out Wonfield 7 times during this stretch
Hurricane crushed Winfield 44-7 in 2007 and 2012
Hurricane has outscored Winfield 635-183 over the last 23 meetings.
So what gives?
I asked some current Hurricane assistant coaches, who have also coached at Winfield for their perspective. "Winfield just does not have the population base that Hurricane has," offered Greg Julian who teaches at WHS but coaches at HHS. "If Hurricane has a few boys that dont come out and play football it hurts, but if the same is true at Winfield, they are in for a hard season."
Coach Jeff Humphreys agrees, "if a key player leaves Hurricane we can replace him, if they lose a top player they suffer." Humphreys like Julian has coached for both sides of the rivalry and offers some additional points, "at the high school level for several years Hurricane has just been a better program, better facilities, weight room, and honestly in my opinion better coaching staffs."
Both coaches point out that at the midget league level, and even up through middle school, if Winfield may have had 3 or 4 really talented players that alone was enough to beat Hurricane, but that does not equate to wins at the high school level.
One coach not affiliated with either team who wished to remain anonymous had this to say about the rivalry, "Winfield does not suffer from a lack of confidence. As is the case the last several years, the believe they will win on Friday night. But the mentality of being on the wrong end of this game for so many years seems to weighs on them.
As soon as they face some adversity during the game, that here we go mentality kicks in. Once that happens they start pressing and ultimately make more mistakes." This coach added "it almost seems like Hurricane kids are tougher."
We will see if this holds true again on Friday night.