San Bernardino-Pacific, pitting the two oldest public schools in San Bernardino, is one of the longest-standing football rivalries in the Inland Empire. But it is changing this year.
Part of it was obvious. Both teams were leaving the San Andreas League, where they had battled for many years, to the Mountain Valley League, where they would play four Riverside County schools.
A change is that the league is much more competitive, so Pacific and SBHS are actually in the thick of the playoff hunt entering this game. Depending on how other games finish, San Bernardino could finish as high as 2nd, while Pacific could be as high as a tie for 3rd.
But there’s more to it. San Bernardino found an old trophy used for the game, and added recent scores to it and will present it to the winner of the game. The trophy is actually called the “Sun-Telegram Bowl”, and was apparently awarded by the predecessor of The Sun, the Sun-Telegram. For the record, pacific leads the all-time series, 22-18
And on Thursday, the coaching staffs and about 40 players per team met at a pizza place about halfway between the two schools for a pregame luncheon.
“I didn’t know what to expect,” Pacific coach Mike Aragon said of the luncheon.. “But the players really get along, And I talked to coach (Jeff) Imbriani.. I told him to make sure that trophy is cleaned up before they give it to us on Friday.”