Chesterfield, VA (WWBT)- Thomas Dale and L.C. Bird are separated by approximately six miles, making their rivalry on the football field a genuine backyard brawl. The players will take the field and face opponents that they've played with and against growing up, and some that they call neighbors.
This rivalry has grown to the point where the two teams typically play each other twice in a season, though last season they only battled once, with the Skyhawks winning, 29-3. This year, the two teams will play two games again, beginning with Friday's season opener at Bird. Dale senior Lorenzo Fields says that last year's contest was an embarrassment to his team and that it's fuel for the fire this time around.
The intense rivalry between the two team dates back to some of the current players' parents. Many attended the same high school as their sons, while others attended the opposing high school and now their kids play for their former rivals.
Last year, the Skyhawks ran the table in the regular season and finished 11-1, falling to Hermitage in the state quarterfinals. The Knights, meanwhile, finished 5-5, one year after winning the state championship.
This game is our NBC12 On the Sidelines Game of the Week, and will kickoff at 7:30 pm on Friday night.