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Battle of Bullfrog Road Renewed

March 2, 2012 - Al Stephenson
I just returned from the sectional final basketball game played at Fostoria High School. The game pitted the two schools that made the Battle of Bullfrog Road an annual extravaganza for many years. New Riegel versus Hopewell Loudon. It was a rivalry like no other. I spent thirty years in the hallways of New Riegel High School and remember fondly the pep rallies, the games and all the excitement that a H-L v NR game brought to both communities.

That was some time ago. For the last several years the contest has not caused the excitement that it used to. Several factors have led to the demise of the great rivalry and not one is more significant than the fact that people don't go to as many sporting events as in the past. Years ago the gyms were packed, the games were hotly contested and fans were drained by the end of the evening.

Then came half full gyms and some one sided contests. The rivalry lacked the intensity it once had.

Tonight the old Battle of Bullfrog Road returned. In a thrilling tilt, the Blue Jackets edged the Chieftains 58-54. The gym may not have been packed, but a good sized crowd was on hand. The game featured runs by both teams and the crowd got fired up on more than one occasion. It brought back some fond memories to this sports fan.

Both teams showed athleticism and as is usually the case, it was a shame that one team had to lose. For me though, the winner of the game was not as important as the feeling I got watching the action.

The view from my seat suggests that this game had the feeling of past great contests. It was good to see the enthusiasm that a high school basketball game can generate.


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