Ardmore, Ada ready for 100th Battle of the Cats
ADA, Okla. (KTEN) - This year Ardmore and Ada will set another milestone in their long-running rivalry as they meet for the 100th time.
"When I played there, it was everything," said current Denison head coach and former Ada quarterback Brent Whitson. "My head coach, Craig McBroom said every ball game was important, but it's hard to deny the Ada-Ardmore thing and it's special that it's 100 years and I'm sure they're going to celebrate it."
Ardmore defensive coordinator Grant Naylor has seen both sides of the rivalry. He was a center for Ada in his playing days.
"It was hard, but I said, "It's a job." and that's part of coaching and I always say that I'm a Tiger at heart. I've been down here longer than I was at Ada, but I still love to see that Cougars win when we're not playing them."
But this week, they are playing them. And although the battle may be fierce on the field, the respect the two sides have for each other is evident.
"It's one of the biggest rivals in the state, if not the biggest," said Ada head Brad O'Steen. "I think it's a classy rival because Coach Newby does a great job. He's a class act guy."
"It's a classy matchup," said Ardmore head coach Josh Newby. "Ada-Ardmore goes way back. Way before I even came here. It's good for high school football. Coach O'Steen does a great job."
The two teams come into this year's matchup on very different trajectories. Ada started with a win in a 14-7 slugfest against Durant.
Ardmore is looking to shake off a tough 59-7 loss to Lawton Ike where a lot of players got their first varsity football experience.
Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. on Friday at Norris Field at East Central University.