Whitehorse, Monument Valley football teams set for Battle of the Drum

It’s down to the biggest game of the year for both the Whitehorse and Monument Valley high school football teams.

They both conclude their seasons when they clash in the annual Battle of the Drum football game on the Monument Valley High School football field this Friday, October 25.

The traveling trophy, a custom-made drum, which represents the rivalry of the two Navajo Nation schools, will go home with the team that wins until they meet again this winter on the basketball court.

On the football side, it will be the 39th meeting between the two rivals, with Whitehorse holding a slight 20-18 lead in the series.

Last year, the Raiders and Cougars met twice on the gridiron. Whitehorse won the Drum in the first matchup, and Monument Valley took it back just two weeks later.

Coming into the game on Friday, Monument Valley holds the Drum by virtue of the Lady Cougar volleyball team’s win over the Lady Raiders on October 10.

But the Cougars haven’t played a football game since their 24-22 win at Dolores, CO on September 20.

Monument Valley head coach Calvert Lameman is a bit concerned about that, saying that the break from competition may have a negative impact on his team.

On the other side, Whitehorse suffered a tough 76-14 loss to Providence Hall in their most recent game on October 11.

Raider head coach Elliott Benn knows that the Cougars began the year down in numbers, but have gotten most of their players back as the season has gone along. He said his team will need to be prepared for that.

Both teams play an independent football schedule and come into the Battle of the Drum with a 3-2 record. According to Parry’s Power Guide, Whitehorse is favored to win the game.

Coach Lameman said that in order for the Cougars to upset the Raiders, his team will have to play all four quarters and limit their own mistakes while capitalizing on Whitehorse miscues.

“I want the team to finish on a positive note, play as a team with good sportsmanship, and know that they have improved from last year,” he said.

Coach Benn said that his Whitehorse Raiders are looking forward to the matchup. “It’s our rivalry game so we are trying to prepare ourselves. Hopefully we come back with a win and the Drum that we play for.”

The 2019 edition of the Battle of the Drum kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday on the Monument Valley High School football field.

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