by Jesse Brackeen
St. Pius X High School, fifteen minutes down Shepherd, is clearly our archrival. When I recall my freshman year I remember two things: first, getting shoved into a locker forty five seconds into school, and second, the freshmen football game against Pius. I love going to sporting events against Pius because, outside of football, we dominate them in athletics. Our basketball and rugby teams both dismantled them last year.
No other school brings out enthusiasm and passion in me like Pius; not Houston Christian, not Beaumont Kelly, not even Strake. The hostility stems from the fact that Pius believes that they are better than us, and rarely can a conversation between Pius students and our students result without it involving a few slurs and criticisms. As clever as their jokes are, they do go a bit stale after the fortieth or fiftieth time.
There are numerous reasons Pius is our biggest rival.
For one, we are in the same district. If you look to the major sporting leagues of the United States, it is evident that the biggest rivalries are divisional. For example, the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees are both members of the American League Eastern division. Oklahoma and Texas are both members of the Big 12 and have one of the biggest rivalries in sports.
Divisional rivalries bring out the most passion in teams. Strake is a member of the U.I.L (University Interscholastic League); we are a member of TAPPS. The rivalry is forced and in my opinion it needs to be dropped. Sure, students enjoy the Strake game but I have never seen so much school spirit as I did last year when our varsity football team was driving to win the game against Pius last year. Our boys worked their tails off in that game and each and every student was completely engrossed.
I am in no way supporting Strake, but many students have close friends who attend the school down Bellaire Boulevard. Personally, I have a few good friends from Strake, and none from Pius. In my mind, Pius students have tarnished their reputation and have burned the figurative bridge between our schools.
When our football team does take on the Panthers in September and again in November all eyes will be on the game. The district games actually matter and will determine whether or not we will make the playoffs again this year.
The incessant trash talking about our school coupled with the fact that we play in the same district are reason enough, proving that Pius is our main rival. Students at Pius are loud, obnoxious and disrespectful to our school, instilling a sense of anger and aggravation. My pride for my school is never higher than during Pius week, and hopefully this year is our year to finally beat the Panthers.