They are meeting for the 52nd time, with the Panthers holding a slim 26-25 edge. There have been no ties in the series, which began in 1961. The two did not play football in 1971.
SMCC is leaving the Sandusky Bay Conference at the end of the school year to become a member of the Sandusky River League.
Perkins joined the SBC in 1972 and has the edge over the Panthers since then at 21-20.
Perkins (9-0) is the overwhelming favorite, going for its third perfect season in history, while the Panthers enter the contest at 3-6.
The same two teams met in the regular season finale in 1999 and again in 2000 with Perkins in the same position and the Pirates rolled up 62-8 and 41-7 wins respectively under Rock Farlow.
Perkins had a 26-game winning streak, starting with a 15-0 mark and a state championship in 1999, followed by another 10-0 regular season and a playoff win in 2000 before falling to Coldwater.
There has been plenty of interest in the two schools with crowds between 2,500 and 6,000 for the most part over the years which was dominated by the Panthers in the early going, and by the Pirates in recent years.
The longest winning streak in the series is five — by each school twice. SMCC lost the first game, 38-0, but chalked up five straight wins starting in 1962.
Perkins ran off five victories in succession beginning in 1979, then it was SMCC with five in a row (1979-1983). Perkins came back with another string of five wins, starting in 1997.
There have been 13 shutouts, eight by the Panthers and five for Perkins. The Pirates had back-to-back whitewashes in 1967 and 1968 while SMCC turned the trick in 1989 and 1990 and again in 1992 and 1993.
Both schools have had their share of coaches in that period of time.
Ryan Wikel is the 14th SMCC coach to face Perkins, while Jason Ziegler is the 11th Perkins coach in the 51 previous meetings. Ziegler was also the head coach for the Panthers in 2008 and 2009.
Only three coaches have perfect marks in the series. Bob Hart of Bellevue went 3-0 for the Panthers in 1964-66, and John Sheridan was the winner in 1996, his only season at SMCC.
For Perkins, Gary Qusino compiled a 2-0 log in his tenure (2008 and 2009) while Rock Farlow posted a 6-2 record in his eight seasons with the Pirates that included the only state championship.
Perkins scored the most lopsided win in the series — at 58-0 in 1967 — under coach Ted Schwanger, and Ziegler’s 2009 Pirates rolled to a 57-0 victory.
Hart’s 1966 SMCC team breezed to a 44-0 win on the way to a perfect 10-0 season, and the Panthers also won 39-0 in 1989, another year in which they had a perfect season.
The foot in the football was also prevalent in three games.
The first came in 1963, when Mike Krafty booted a 35-yard field goal with 29 seconds remaining to give the Panthers a 9-6 win. He dropkicked the ball, which hit the crossbar, then toppled over.
Perkins had is own heroics in the 1980 battle, when Brian Printy booted a 31-yard field goal with three seconds on the clock for a 15-13 win in a controversial finish.
In 2011, the last time the two met at Strobel Field, the Panthers claimed a 13-12 victory on a successful extra-point kick while Perkins missed after each touchdown, and also a field goal try. That ended a 15-game SBC losing streak.
SMCC also pulled out a dramatic 13-12 win in 1973 under Doug Mehling when sophomore quarterback Dave Roth teamed with running back Denny Guerra for a 90-yard touchdown pass with one minute left.
Both schools also have overtime wins to their credit. In fact, Perkins leads in that category, 2-1.
SMCC is in the Ohio High School Athletic Association record book for the quickest. That came in 1985.
That was two plays.
SMCC had the ball first, from the Perkins 20.
On the opening play, quarterback Jon McLaughlin dropped back and fired a strike to fullback Joe Will for the touchdown and the Panthers added the PAT to lead, 13-6.
Perkins apparently scored on its first play from scrimmage, but a holding penalty nullified the score and put the ball back on the SMCC 32.
The Pirates went to the air on their first official OT play and SMCC’s Matt Keech intercepted the ball to end the game and give Hammond his first win in the series.
The field goal decided the 1994 contest as sophomore Drew Dahlke kicked a 33-yarder for Perkins, coached by Todd Alles for a 17-14 advantage in the first overtime session. SMCC had a chance to tie but missed a 30-yard attempt.
The third overtime game was in 1997, and again Perkins prevailed (13-7) in Farlow’s first season.
It was a night for the defensive units for both teams before Jason Green took over for the Pirates in the extra session. Perkins had 21 rushing the second half in 14 carries, but Green bolted his way for 34 yards on just four rushes in overtime, capped by a two-yard run for the touchdown that came after the Panthers failed to score on their possession.
Some outstanding individual performances also surfaced.
In fact, Charles “Choo Choo” Stevenson set the tone right off the bat as he exploded for 272 yards rushing and four touchdowns in the inaugural meeting in 1961. The game was a Perkins home affair, but played at Strobel Field.
Curt Williams had four catches — all for touchdowns — in 1967 as Perkins romped, 58-0, under coach Schwanger. Mickey Corso added 127 yards rushing on 25 carries.
In 1975, Rayfus Campbell of the Pirates ripped off 202 yards rushing and three touchdowns in a 25-7 win. Campbell also rushed for 154 yards on 25 carries the previous year in a 13-8 Perkins win.
For SMCC, a 30-point third quarter highlighted the 44-0 win in 1966. Denny Fitz and Dick Wiesler combined for 125 yards rushing in that quarter alone.
In 1989, Mike Will and Tony Rutger combined for 259 yards of offense for the Panthers in a 39-0 win. Will ran for 149 yards on 23 carries, and Rutger was six of 13 passing for 110 yards and three scores.
Spencer Dye had a sensational game in 2002, a 37-25 SMCC win. Dye rambled for 277 yards and four touchdowns to give coach Mike Opfer his first win against the Pirates. Dye had 173 yards in the first half alone.