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PREVIEW: Proctor vs. Rome Free Academy (NY)

September 13, 2012

Longtime rivals the Proctor Raiders and the Rome Free Academy Black Knights will take the field in a classic New York rivalry game tonight. This rivalry dates all the way back to 1891 and is the oldest rivalry in New York. Proctor has won 7 of the last 11 meetings, but lost last year’s battle 24-21 on a last second field goal. This will be the first time since 2006 that the two teams will be playing in the same league, Section III Class AA.

Rome Free Academy is looking to bounce back from a 2-6 record last season. The Black Knights return a couple of key players for fourth year Head Coach Ted Swavely’s team. Junior Josh Reed and sophomore Eddie Campos will return to give the Black Knights an explosive backfield. In 2011, the Black Knights rushing attack ran for 1,619 yards and 12 touchdowns. Reed will also play safety and Campos will double as a defensive back on defense. Junior Angus Evans, a 6-5 quarterback, will also return to lead the offense giving RFA an intimidating QB-RB combo. Junior Robert Alder will be returning at the guard position to help protect Evans. The defense is looking to improve on last year’s poor numbers where they allowed an average of 37 points per game. They will be led by defensive tackle Alex Todd, defensive end Zach Thomas and linebacker Anthony Capron. The secondary will feature Josh Reed and junior Matt Adamik.

The Proctor Raiders finished last year with an overall record of 4-5 reaching the Section III semifinals. The Raiders return senior all-league quarterback Jordan Treen who has thrown for over 3,330 yards and 34 touchdowns in his first two seasons under center. The backfield will feature Lawrence Elliot, a 3-year starter, and Maurice Peace at running back. Last year they combined for over 1,000 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns. Chris Simmons will lineup at wide receiver where he recorded 18 receptions for 4 touchdowns last season. Simmons is regarded as one of the most dynamic athletes in Section III with many titles in track and field. The Raiders will face a tough schedule but feel confident that they can face whatever is thrown at them.

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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.