Havelock, New Bern set to renew rivalry

havelock new bern

New Bern coach Bobby Curlings, left, and Havelock coach Jim Bob Bryant meet with an official before the start of last year's game between the two teams. Havelock and New Bern are scheduled to meet for the 45th time at 7 p.m. Friday at Havelock High.

Havelock News file photo
Published: Wednesday, August 27, 2014 at 03:53 PM.

It began 50 years ago as a clash between two Craven County high schools, and now it’s one of the biggest games in the state.

Havelock and New Bern are scheduled to renew their football rivalry at 7 p.m. Friday at Havelock High.

The teams first met in 1964, just a few short years after Havelock High School opened its doors. Brick Scoggins threw a 32-yard touchdown pass to Tommy Dees in the closing minutes, and then Dees intercepted New Bern’s last gasp pass, clinching Havelock’s 25-20 victory in the first ever football meeting between the two schools.

Today, both teams have multiple state championships under their belts, with Havelock coming off three in a row, making this much more than just a county rivalry but one of the top matchups in the state.

Both teams opened their seasons last week with victories. Havelock is coming off last week’s 37-6 victory over Washington, while New Bern came up with six turnovers in shutting out Durham Hillside 12-0. New Bern’s Rasheed McCoy intercepted three passes, including two in the end zone, as the Bears kept Hillside off the scoreboard and limited the Hornets to 123 total yards.

Offensively, quarterback Mike Hughes leads New Bern. Against Hillside, he threw for one touchdown and ran for another.

“They’re athletic. They’re New Bern,” Havelock coach Jim Bob Bryant said. “New Bern’s always going to have good players. They’re always going to be well-coached. We’re going to have to come out and have a great — not a good — but a great week of practice to have a chance to beat those guys.”

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