Football season is already underway, but the biggest games are yet to come. District games are when things get exciting, but games against our biggest rivals are always the best; students from both sides get pumped, and sometimes things quickly change from friendly to intensely competitive. The question is, just who is Leander’s biggest rival? There’s the traditional Leander-Cedar Park rivalry, and the recently hatched Leander-Rouse rivalry.
When Cedar Park High School opened in 1998, Leander High School was the only other high school in the district. Naturally the two became big rivals, and the game between Leander and Cedar Park brought out huge crowds.
“Back in the day it was a huge rivalry. It was strong, it was intense, [with] funny signs across the way all week long, and there was trash talk. It was fun, but it was all week long, not just one day (like it is now),” Cedar Park Celebrities dance team director Stacy Danielson said.
Cedar Park and Leander used to share Bible stadium (much like Rouse and Leander do now), and that added to the tension between the two schools. But with the addition of 3 other high schools, this traditional rivalry has died down some now. While Rouse and other schools from our district have been added in as newer rivals, some students still believe the traditional rivalry is there with the Timberwolves.
“I think Cedar Park is our main rival. We’ve had a long rivalry type of relationship. I think it’s because we’re both really good schools, and we’re head and head all the time,” Leander sophomore Isabelle Hoff said.
Some Cedar Park students agree that Leander is still one of their bigger rivals.
“I don’t know that it’s changed much from our point of view; it’s still pretty traditional. We always do the white out/black out thing. We do the black out, and you guys, we assume wear white shirts. Every year, I think it’s the Student Council that sells shirts that say black out, and it’ll say Crosstown Showdown on the back,” Cedar Park senior Ben Baldazo said.
Our rivalry also goes beyond football and extends to the band programs.
“I think our main rival is Cedar Park because if you look at the skill levels, well, Leander and Cedar Park are at the top of our district. For band, Cedar Park is the band to beat,” Leander junior Nathan Snyder said.
However, some students on both sides feel that the rivalry isn’t around very much anymore.
“Honestly, ever since Lake Travis, I feel like we don’t have a main rival. We just try our best with every team. We have schools that we don’t necessarily like very much but we don’t have many schools when it comes to sports that we are just like, every game we have with them say, ‘oh we really wanna beat them.’ That was Lake Travis for us, but since they’re not in our district, we’re not really crazy about any specific team.” Cedar park junior Tori Cantu said.
So if Cedar Park isn’t Leander’s big rival, just who is? Many Leander students consider Rouse a huge rival. Next week’s game against Rouse will be a big deal too; The Roar will be posting an article over that rivalry as well, so be sure to look for it next week.
Even if the traditional rivalry isn’t the only one anymore, the game between Leander and Cedar Park will continue bring opportunities for lots of school spirit for both sides. The game on Friday the 27th is sure to be packed with fans from both sides.