A trio of Platte County seniors sought a way to honor a friend who lost her battle with cancer. What ended up developing could be a sustainable charitable event extending into two communities. Platte County High School and Kearney High School plan to intertwine an annual rivalry football game with a chance to support a good cause.
Starting with the game this Friday, Oct. 2 at Pirate Stadium, the two schools plan to play for a newly created traveling trophy while donating money collected to a charity of the host school’s choice. Platte County chose the TNK Children’s Foundation, created by Casey and Staci Upham Tubbs to support parents caring for children with cancer.
Upham Tubbs is a Platte County graduate.
Highway 92 Showdown t-shirts will be available for $15 at the game with profits going directly to TNK Children’s Foundation. A 50/50 raffle will also support the cause, and donations will be accepted at the gates.
Platte County’s Kaitlyn Duvall, Delisia Draper and Tara Hansen helped form the fundraising idea in honor of Shaleen Lene, a 2014 Platte County graduate who died in August of 2015 after battling Leukemia. Platte County activities director Phil Dorman came up with the idea of mixing that with a rivalry game tradition. The traveling trophy will feature a Highway 92 street sign in honor of the stretch of highway that connects the two schools, located about 30 miles apart, along with the logo of each team.
The game between the Suburban Conference Blue Division rivals will be called the Highway 92 Showdown, and the plan is to adorn the license-plate shaped sign with stickers at the bottom, denoting the winning team and year. Platte County wins will have an orange tag, and Kearney wins will have a purple tag.
The winning team will keep the trophy for that year.
Kearney has won nine of 10 meetings between the rivals since Platte County joined the Suburban Conference in 2008. Overall, Platte County owns a 23-14 edge in the series with the first meeting coming in 1919, according to historical records. They played twice that year with the Pirates winning both in shutouts — 81-0 and 32-0.