The 2016 edition of the Page-Grimsley rivalry is set for this Friday night. The game will return to Grimsley’s Jamieson Stadium this year after the game was held at Marion Kirby Stadium at Page in 2015, for the first time in the history of this historic rivalry. The Pirates and Whirlies first met in 1960, and since then have played a total of 63 games against each other. The last time that the Whirlies won was in 2006, and they will definitely be looking to knock off the Pirates this year, 10 years since their last victory.
Beating Page is going to be difficult for Grimsley, no question. The vaunted Pirate offense has scored an average of 46 points per game this season, and are (6-1),(1-0) on the season. The offense is led by Javon Leake, Will Jones, and Ronald Polite, with contributions from others at receiver, although Polite seems to be Jones’ favorite target. Leake is having another amazing season, and seems to be getting better with each passing game. Page beat Southeast Guilford last Friday night 42-6 in the driving rain. I wonder if it wasn’t for the weather would the Pirates have scored even more? Page’s defense has been playing extremely well as of late. Tyler DeBerry is coming off of another great performance against Southeast, and he will need to continue to play well to lead the defense. It would be almost impossible to bet against the Pirates in this contest.
Grimsley comes into the biggest game of their regular season fresh off a 26-3 win in their conference opener at Southern Alamance, and is now (3-4),(1-0) on the season. Beating the Patriots by 23 points last week, the Whirlies won by their largest margin of victory so far this season. Darryl Brown will be looking to get a win in his first game as Grimsley’s head coach, and will surely have a game-plan he believes will lead the Whirlies to victory. Grimsley’s weapons come in the form of 5’ 10”, 160-pound junior WR/FS Nile Harris, who is also dangerous on kick returns, and leads the Whirlies in tackles, and Brelin Faison-Walden, a 6’ 1”, 200-pound senior who is committed to Penn State University. Faison-Walden also is a two-way player for the Whirlies, and has rushed for 100-plus yards once, and had a ten tackle game as well. Grimsley is going to need all the help they can get, and will need to do their best to keep Jones, Leake, and Page’s offense off the field as much as possible, to try to keep the game close.
Arguably the biggest rivalry in our area, and no matter what the anticipated outcome will be, a prolific crowd is guaranteed. Alumni from both schools, current students, fans of high school football, and media all flock to Jamieson Stadium to watch these two teams play. It would be an enormous feat for Grimsley to pull off the upset tomorrow night, and each team will be pumped up due to the environment of the game.