Living in a small town can have its advantages and disadvantages when it comes to high school sports.
In Jefferson City, Helias Catholic High School and Jefferson City High School are within a mile of each other and both have strong athletic programs. While each high school is ranked in a different class size, and neither compete against each in statewide competitions, there is always a lot of attendance when Jefferson City High School and Helias Catholic High School athletic teams compete against each other. Additionally, friendships and camaraderie blossom when the teams compete against one another. The interest from the fans also grows when these two schools’ teams have athletes matching up together in sports. All sports but football, match up and have tournaments, and teammates seem to be within the two schools, instead of just within one school.
Jefferson City High School competes as a Class 4 or Class 5 school depending on the sport. Helias competes as a Class 3 or Class 4 school. While there are noticeable enrollment size differences, when it comes to athletics, the two schools are more evenly matched than one might think.
Each year, Helias competes against Jefferson City High School in softball, baseball, track, cross country, soccer, wrestling, golf and volleyball. So far this school year, Helias played Jefferson City High School in softball and walked away with the win. Helias was also successful in defeating Jefferson City High School in volleyball. The boys soccer game played just last week had Jefferson City High School walking away victorious.
Several match ups on the boys cross country course have involved Jefferson City front runner being ahead of Helias’ front runner, by mere seconds. These competitions always draw a large number of spectators and a great deal of excitement along with it. While the two teams battle it out on the field, there has been a mutual respect for each team’s players no matter who ends up winning in the end. In fact, there are also many friendships forming between these two schools. It seems that playing a mutual sport, regardless of the team, brings athletes together to become friends.
“The players are friends on and off the field,” said Braden Remmert, a senior Helias soccer player. “But from the first whistle to the last, we are enemies and battle it out no matter what.”