Neal, Miller to meet Friday
From staff reports
Bragging rights and a play-off berth will be on the line when the T.R. Miller Tigers cross Murder Creek to play the W.S. Neal Blue Eagles Friday night in the teams' 60th annual meeting.
Both T.R. Miller head coach Jamie Riggs and W.S. Neal head coach Blaine Hathcock acknowledge that this is a huge game, but for different reasons.
But Hathcock said it's about the play-off berth at stake.
The rivalry dates back to 1946, when a Neal-Miller game was scheduled as a benefit for the local hospital. The two teams had played each other in basketball and baseball before, but 1946 marked the first time the rivals met on a football field.
Members of the Escambia Hospital had worked with the school officials from both Miller and Neal to set the game up for Nov. 22, 1946, to raise funds to buy equipment that was needed at the hospital. Both teams were scheduled to play that week, Miller with Evergreen and Neal with Flomaton. Evergreen and Flomaton agreed to cancel their contracts so that the game could go on, and the sale of tickets began.
The Brewton Standard reported there was a great demand for tickets and they were placed in several stores around East Brewton and Brewton. By the time of the game there were only 200 tickets left to sell at the gate. Bleachers were brought from the Neal field and placed at Rotary Field where the game was to be played.
In the years since that first meeting, the game has been dubbed “the Battle of Murder Creek.”
Look for additional coverage of the game on Page 6A, and on Page 1B.