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Media Release: Woodland Hills (PA) vs. Upper St. Clair (PA)

September 30, 2015

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Pittsburgh, PA:  Sept. 24, 2015 – The Great American Rivalry Series is proud to announce it will feature a rivalry that has two historic Pennsylvania coaches when the Woodland Hills Wolverines host the Upper St. Clair Panthers in the Series’ seventh weekend of games for 2015. This game will be presented by the United States Army and will be played on October 2 at Woodland Hills’ Wolvarena, noted by ESPN and USA Today as one of America’s best places to watch a high school football game. Highlighting some of the longest running rivalries in high school football, the 2015 Great American Rivalry Series will feature 100 showdowns nationwide.  All of these games come with great football, hard earned sweat and a heavy dose of hometown pride.

For the 12th year, the Great American Rivalry Series has selected an exclusive collection of top-notch rivalries across the country, covering 40 states and over 100 cities throughout the country. Wrapped in tradition, these annual battles excite entire communities, while celebrating the schools, their teams, and their fans. We Know Friday NightsTM

This game features two of the most prolific and winningest high school coaches in Pennsylvania as the WPIAL’s victory leader, Jim Render of Upper St. Clair, who has 381 victories under his belt, takes on the Wolverine’s Coach George Novak, who has 289 victories. Coach Novak started coaching at Steel Valley in 1979 and is the only coach in Woodland Hills history, starting in 1987.   Novak is one of only four coaches in WPIAL history with six WPIAL titles.  He won one at Steel Valley and five at Woodland Hills. Last year Coach Novak’s Wolverines handed USC’s Coach Render his biggest defeat in 36 years (as well as the most points given up by the Panthers in 55 seasons). The Panthers will bring their 2-2 record into Wolvarena to face an unbeaten Woodland Hills squad this Friday.

An in-school Rivalry Fitness Challenge will also take place between the two schools during the week leading up to the game. The school that proves to be the fittest will be awarded a crystal trophy at halftime of the game. The winning team on the field earns year-long bragging rights with the Great American Rivalry Series Champions trophy, presented by the Army. The game’s Most Valuable Player and the top student-athlete from each school are also recognized as part of the Series.

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You can find more information at GreatAmericanRivalry.com or through the Series’ Twitter (@AmericanRivalry), Facebook, YouTube and Instagram accounts. Previews and past results will be posted throughout the season with details of the teams and the history of the rivalries, and after the game. Fans can relive the excitement with photo galleries and game recaps.

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Fans can add to the intensity of the rivalry via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram using #GreatAmericanRivalry. The Rivalry can also be found on Pinterest (AmericanRivalry) and YouTube. Fan photos posted with this hashtag may be featured on the Great American Rivalry Series website’s new Fan Photo Gallery, Pinterest Page and promoted via our other social media outlets.

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What is the Great American Rivalry Series?


Each fall for over a century, high school football has been the centerpiece for families and communities on Friday night. In 2004, iHigh, Inc. created the Great American Rivalry Series to celebrate this uniquely American sport and the cultural phenomenon of “Friday Night in America.” The Series shines the spotlight on top high school football rivalries across the nation, where long-standing traditions are valued, expectations are sky high, and followers are committed.