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Lower Merion 20, Radnor 7 (11/14/09)

November 15, 2009

by Ryan Mosser

It was a cold and rainy day in Radnor, Pennsylvania, but that didn’t stop the Radnor and Lower Merion faithful from coming out in support of their teams. The grills started up hours before game time and the students were out in full force, with face and body paint, chanting and cheering and hoping their guys would bring home the Great American Rivalry Series Trophy.

With the rain turning into a mist, two very special families took the field as Conor Foote from Lower Merion and Brendan Connor from Radnor accepted the Scholar Athlete Award from the United States Marines. It was an emotional pre-game ceremony as the families of the two athletes were long-time friends and Conor’s father was unable to attend because of serious illness. The award obviously meant a lot to the family.

Afterward, the teams took the field for the 113th installment of this great rivalry. It was clear from the get-go that Conor Foote was the true embodiment of a Scholar Athlete. Not only did he have the highest GPA on the team, Conor was also their best player on the field. He was responsible for all three of Lower Merion’s touchdowns and had two interceptions on the defensive side as well.

Conor scored his first touchdown in the first quarter on a scamper up the middle. After a missed two point conversion, it was 6-0 Lower Merion. The defense repeatedly stymied the Radnor offense. Lower Merion took over and, in what may have been one of the best plays in the Great American Rivalry Series season, Conor Foote scrambled around at mid-field, breaking tackles and evading rushers before launching the ball into the end zone for a touchdown. After the extra point and a near miss on another touchdown, Lower Merion took a 13-0 lead into the half.

Radnor came back from the half ready to go. Although giving up another passing touchdown to Conor Foote, the game was still not over. Mid-way through the third quarter, the Raiders finally scored and sent the fans into a frenzy. The score was now 20-7. On the ensuing kick-off, Radnor’s gunner smashed the returner causing a fumble deep in Lower Merion territory. All the Raiders needed was a solid drive to make it a real game again. After an incomplete pass and two runs up the middle, Radnor was forced to try a field goal and failed.

The fourth quarter became a cat-and-mouse game with Lower Merion trying to run out the clock and Radnor desperately trying to hold on to hope. In the end, it was a 20-7 victory for underdogs Lower Merion as they celebrated the first win over their rival in over a decade. As the students rushed the field and took a victory lap, USMC SSgt. Bennett awarded Conor Foote the MVP medal and trophy, followed by the championship trophy presentation and distribution of the championship hats. It was a great day of football with all of the pageantry of the longest continuously running rivalry in America.

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  • Lower Merion vs. Radnor – 2009

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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.