The Final King of the County Game
It has been “The Game” for Mecklenburg County’s two high-school football teams for the past 66 years.
Regardless of whether you support the green and white of Park View or the blue and gold of Bluestone, fans have always turned out in droves for the annual “King of the County” game.
The series started the same year the two schools opened in 1955 and it will come an end on Friday night when the final football game between the Dragons and Barons is played in Skipwith. The two schools will merge together in 2022 as Mecklenburg County High School.
Park View will bring a 17-game winning streak into the contest as the last victory by the Barons was a 17-14 victory in 2002.
Bluestone’s longest winning streak in the series is four games which happened between 1984 and 1986.
The biggest margin of victory in the series for Park View was a 66-0 win in 2012 while the largest margin for Bluestone was a 32-0 win in the second meeting of the 1958 campaign.
The Dragons have shutout the Barons 14 times in the series while Bluestone has returned the favor 10 times.
The first game ever played in the series ended in a 0-0 tie in 1955 as both team’s defense pitched a shutout.
Coach Carlton Klotcher led the Barons in their debut season while Coach Harold Wise led the Dragons. In the final meeting on Friday, Coach Harry John will lead Bluestone while Coach Tony Whittingham, Jr., leads Park View.
The tie in 1955 was one of three in the series as the two teams also deadlocked at 12-12 in 1975 and 0-0 in 1976.
The Dragons captured the first win in the series by picking up a 13-6 victory over the Barons in the second meeting of the 1955 season.
Park View finished its debut season with a 4-4-1 record while Bluestone went 4-3-1.
There have been many exciting games in the series. One of the best I ever saw happened in 2013 when the Dragons overcame a 16-point second half deficit to steal one from Bluestone with a 42-36 victory in Skipwith on opening night.
Senior tailback Matt Brown scored four touchdowns and rushed for 171 yards with scoring runs of 35, 46, 1 and 13 yards in the game for Park View while kicker Jacob Newton recovered his own onside kick to help key the victory in Coach Kelvin Hutcheson’s debut game at the helm.
Deon Mosley had a big game for the Barons, rushing for 138 yards and scoring three touchdowns on runs of 33, 42 and 13 yards.
Park View quarterback Brett Cliborne hooked up with Noo-Noo Patterson on a 72-yard touchdown throw in the game while Leroy Allen scored on a 5-yard touchdown run.
Trey Watson hooked up with Damien Winbush on a 20-yard touchdown throw for Bluestone and Carnell Richardson added a 9-yard touchdown run in the game.
The Dragons lead the all-time “King of the County” series with a 43-23-3 record.