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PREVIEW: East vs. Highland (UT)

September 16, 2013

SALT LAKE CITY, UT – Another edition of the annual “Neighborhood Fight” will take place when the East Leopards take on the Highland Rams on Friday at 9 p.m. (EST) at Highland High School. More than 5,000 fans are expected to witness the game that’s part of the 2013 Great American Rivalry Series presented by the U.S. Marine Corps and Hibbett Sports.

The rivalry featuring schools only blocks apart has been going on since 1914 with East leading the all-time series 60-45-7. East has won the last two matchups – including 34-13 last season – but Highland has won six of the last 10 overall.

The Brandon Matich-coached Leopards went 11-2 last season but saw a few of their wins vanish after the use of ineligible players. They are off to another good start this season, opening 4-0 with a 42-6 win over Woods Cross in their last game.

The Rams, coached by Brody Benson, are off to a 3-1 start this season and are coming off a 35-14 win over Kearns.

Both teams feature plenty of high-caliber Division I players with the Leopards playing senior back Ula Tolutau (Wisconsin), senior receiver Joe Tukuafo (Utah), junior defensive end Korey Rush (Arizona State) and junior linebacker Christian Folau (Stanford) and the Rams playing senior defensive tackle and the state’s top recruit Bryan Mone (Michigan).

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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.