With the return of Friday Night Lights came a battle of rivals.
The new 2016-2017 season began with the Sunset Bowl and the Battle of the Bridge.
It has been known for a while now the seasons for Bonney Lake, Sumner, Enumclaw and White River would be different this year. All four schools are in a different league with new opponents.
But that didn’t halt the friendly, cross-town rivalry games these teams look forward to each year.
The No. 6 Spartans hosted the No. 5 Panthers at Sunset Chev Stadium to kick off the year.
Sumner won the battle 41-14.
The Spartans got off to an early lead scoring its first touchdown of the season on a 10 yard run from Tre Weed.
Another seven was put on the board in the first quarter following a 41 yard pass from Luke Ross to Connor Weddington.
Weddington rushed for a total of 277 yards in the season opener.
Entering the second quarter, the Spartans looked to be on the road to shutting out its district rival but with 5:05 remaining in the first half that changed.
Marcus Hamilton ran the ball for 12 yards and the Panthers first score of the game.
Hamilton finished the game with 18 carries for 92 yards.
Heading into the locker room, Sumner led by 20.
For the remainder of the game, Sumner scored a touchdown in the third and fourth quarters.
And the Panthers added one more with seconds remaining in the third.
This time following a 21 yard pass.
The Panthers stay home this week, hosting Timberline at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9.
The 1-0 Spartans will travel to South Kitsap Friday for a scheduled 7 p.m. kickoff.
Battle of the Bridge
The battle of the Hornets was Friday at the Expo Center.
But it was Enumclaw who mastered a 24-7 win over White River.
The battle was even in the first half with both teams scoring one touchdown, though each had opportunities.
An Enumclaw touchdown pass in the second quarter was called back on a holding penalty.
In the second half Enumclaw found the scoring formula and put the game away.
Up next for Enumclaw is the Kentlake Falcons with a 6 p.m. start time Saturday, Sept. 10 at French Field.
The White River Hornets will host its first league game of the season Friday with a 7 p.m. kick off against Lindbergh.