Clearwater Central Catholic-Calvary Christian ‘rivalry’ cools

“As far as I’m concerned there is no more rivalry with Calvary,” CCC coach Chris Harvey said. “Rivals do not drop other rivals. "
Clearwater Central Catholic's Jon Dunphy (7) carries the ball in the final minutes of their game against Calvary Christian in Clearwater, Oct. 12, 2018. The final score was 48-12, Clearwater Central Christian. (MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times)
Clearwater Central Catholic's Jon Dunphy (7) carries the ball in the final minutes of their game against Calvary Christian in Clearwater, Oct. 12, 2018. The final score was 48-12, Clearwater Central Christian. (MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times)
Published January 15

Nothing stokes a rivalry like geography. The proximity of Calvary Christian and Clearwater Central Catholic, which are less than 5 miles apart, made this relatively new-found feud all the more cherished.

The biggest clashes between the programs took place on the football field. And when these two private schools knocked heads, there usually was more than just bragging rights at stake considering both belong in the same classification and region.

Despite all that, the rivalry has ended.

Calvary Christian has decided to drop Clearwater Central Catholic from the schedule this coming season.

"As far as I'm concerned there is no more rivalry with Calvary," Marauders coach Chris Harvey said. "Rivals do not drop other rivals. We have one with Tampa Catholic, and I would never consider dropping them under any circumstance. We have it with Berkeley Prep and Jesuit, too.

"Those are games you want on your schedule. They only make you better."

Warriors coach Reggie Crume confirmed that the school took CCC off the schedule, but he did not elaborate on the reason behind the decision.

The teams have competed in everything in recent years, including a facilities arms race to attract student athletes. Calvary Christian was the first to build a state-of-the-art stadium seven years ago. This past fall, CCC unveiled a 6,000-square-foot field house designed entirely for football.

The grand opening was the week the Marauders hosted their rival. Harvey said the timing was not coincidental.

The battles have even been among players, some of whom have switched sides.

Two years ago, CCC lost a pair of college recruits, Amari Burney (Florida) and D'Andre Ferguson (South Dakota), who both transferred to Calvary Christian. This past season, another Marauder, Richie Ilarraza, left to join the Warriors.

In the past two weeks, CCC added two from Calvary — RB/LB Jordan Niles and MLB Trevor Dorris.

Crume said the transfers were not the reason for taking the Marauders off the schedule.

CCC, meanwhile, is still looking for more games to fill out its regular season schedule.

"It's always hard to find games," Harvey said. "Now we have to look even harder."

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