Rivalry between Riders and Generals prevails, despite OCC split
The football rivalry between Wooster and Orrville has gone on for 107 meetings and both teams plan on continuing the rivalry for many years to come.
Since 1990, Orrville has led the series 17-11 through many hard fought battles between the two teams, according to Orrville Athletic Director, Audrey Zuercher.
Doug Haas, WHS football coach, says the game was played as the last game of the season for many years, but when Orrville left the Ohio Cardinal Conference, the two teams decided to meet for the first game of the season.
“Having the game moved to week one brings a completely different feel…The focus for us is making sure we are fundamentally sound moving into the week one game against Orrville,” Haas said.
Doug Davault, Orrville football coach, also said that the game at the beginning of the season is very different, but will help them prepare for their season.
“They are one of the best teams we’ll face, and coming out of the gate and playing a quality opponent will help harden us as we prepare for the remainder of our games,” he said.
The two teams signed a four year contract, beginning in 2016, stating they will continue to play each other as the first game of the season through 2019.
WHS football player, Corbin Lanker (12), says the game is a big thing for both the team and the community.
“Everybody knows about it, everybody gets excited about it; it is something that everybody gets behind,” Lanker said.
Haas said that the whole team and community gets involved and said everyone has fun with the whole aspect of the rivalry.
“My team, family and I know not to wear red and black any day, especially on Orrville vs. Wooster week,” he said.
The last meeting of the rivalry was Aug. 25 at Orrville, where Orrville won 20-16.