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Welcome to the Battle of the Valley Cup previews (19th edition):


Name a high school rivalry with two teams that have one win each for this season. It is the Valley Cup. Friday night at the new Hug High School in Wildcreek, two teams will battle for the rights to play host to the legendary Valley Cup for another year.

The Valley Cup game is between the Hug High School and the North Valleys High School. The real game-changers behind are Tony Doucette and his assistant coaches. Doucette and many assistant coaches are part of the Hawks staff and were part of the North Valleys staff for many years. Tony Doucette is a head coach for Hug Hawks Football and was a head coach at NVHS (2014-2021), prior to his resume, he was part of Ty Gregg (NVHS: 2011-2013) and Rollins Stallworth (Hug: 2008-2010) coaching staff.

Prior to 2001, Many North Valleys area students attended Hug High School until the North Valleys High School was built and Hug lost a lot of students. Many communities including the Northeast Reno, North Valleys, and Sun Valleys resurrected the story and the cup, bringing new life into a storied North Reno rivalry.

In 2002, the Hawks won the first converted prize, led by Alan Thomas (2002), the first Hawks quarterback to win the Valley Cup. Rollins Stallworth was a head coach at Hug while Blair Roman was the first head coach at NVHS. That location took place at the old Hug High School campus in Sutro Street and then kept with 2003. Darryl Feemster (QB/WR) Issac Porter (RB), Corey Gardner (RB), and his company led the Hawks with 43-7 (2004) and 35-13 (2005) victories. In 2006, the North Valleys won their first Valley Cup, led by sophomore QB Will Bell and his company. The NVHS head coach was Jason Ellen. The starting QB Michael Williams and the WR Courtney Gardner led the Hawks with 20-12 (2007) and 22-0 (2008) victories. In 2009, North Valleys won the trailer 20-13, led by QB Tim Herman with 324 yards, 2 TDs, and 1 Int. Also, Ty Gregg was the first season NVHS head coach and unfortunately for the Hawks Football program, this season is the last Rollins Stallworth coaching career as he led the Valley Cup 6-2 record. There is no Valley Cup for the 2010 season, due to scheduling issues.

In 2011, NVHS sophomore QB Daniel Lewis and his company led the NVHS victory 48-37. In 2012, the Hawks revenge the Panthers with a 39-20 victory. In 2013, the Panthers dominated 47-0 over the Hawks, with Daniel Lewis’ and Ty Gregg's final game as a high school career. Daniel Lewis is the greatest quarterback in NVHS history. In 2014, both schools had a first-year head coach Carl LaGrone Jr (Hug), and Tony Doucette (NVHS). The Hug Hawks won with a blowout 59-0, led by WR Devin Porter and RB Roosevelt Calhoun Jr, this is the best year for the Hawks football program in post Stallworth era. In 2015, Hug was crushed by the Partners 34-0. In 2016, The Hawks got a blowout victory 40-0 led by DT senior Junior Pousima, this was the last victory for the Hawks at the old campus and before their 40-game losing streak. 2017 is the last Valley Cup game because North Valleys will move to 3A next season as NVHS gets the victory 35-27over Hug.

Since both schools are in a different league, there is no Valley Cup for the 2018 and 2019 seasons before Hug moves to 3A in 2020. In Cameron Zeidler's era, he led the Panthers by defeating the winless and rebuilding Hawks 40-0 (2020) and 42-14 (2021). In 2021, where Hug play their final season at their old campus before moving to a new campus in Wildcreek. Tony Doucette made this move by becoming a Hug head coach to help winless Hawks in early 2022. Brad Rose became an NVHS head coach as he was an assistant coach prior to the 2016 season. In 2022, Hawks senior QB Nick McBride and WR Connor Humphreys led the team to a victory 36-20.

Going into this week’s game, both sides are desperate to get their second win of the season, take the Valley Cup home, and possibly clinch as 5 th seed in 5A III. North Valleys started with a promise, opening with 42-7 over Sparks before losing seven straight games with Damonte, Reno, Spanish Springs, Wooster, Galena, Douglas, and Carson (with a huge lead before brewing out with a heartbreaking loss). Hug has struggled this season with a win over Sparks, who came with a 1-8 season. Hug has a tough schedule this season with a loss against Damonte, Lowry, Reed, McQueen, Carson, Douglas, Wooster, and Galena.

The Panthers are coached by Brad Rose, who was part of the Doucette coaching staff before making the move to Sparks and then becoming a head coach in 2022. Here are NVHS rosters to look out for:

  • Jason Liddicoat – senior, Wide Receiver, averaging 49.1 yards per game receiving.

  • Ivan Ortiz – senior, Running Back, averaging 56 yards per game rushing.

  • Zach Clarke – junior, Wide Receiver, averaging 18.3 yards per game receiving.

  • Nathan Stack – senior, Wide Receiver, averaging 10.4 yards per game receiving.

  • Mikole Almond – sophomore Quarterback, averaging 43.7 yards per game passing.

  • Hector Nunez – junior - averaging 10.4 tackles per game.

  • Lance Wegman – sophomore – Defensive End and Tackle, an offer from Oregon

The Hawks are coached by Tony Doucette, who was part of North Valley’s head coach for a long time and an assistant coach for Ty Gregg and Rollins Stallworth. Hug has playmakers on both sides of the ball. Here are rosters to look out for:

  • Conner Persons – sophomore, averaging 35.3 yards per game rushing.

  • Elijah Hilbert – sophomore, averaging 46,6 yards per game receiving.

  • Tayte Thomas – junior, averaging 19 yards per game receiving.

  • Jovell Johnson – junior, averaging 35.6 yards per game rushing.

  • Joel Hernandez – senior. averaging 4.7 yards per game rushing.

  • Jacob Perez – Junior, averaging 124.4 yards per game passing.

  • Kenyon Moore – senior, leading 3 interceptions.

  • Ilai Malafu – sophomore, averaging 63.3 yards per game receiving receiving.

  • Saili Aonga – senior, averaging 10.8 tackles per game.

  • Esai Linares – senior, leading 4 sacks.

The game takes place Friday night at Hug High School, 7:00 PM kickoff, but please get here early to find a decent parking lot and seats in the stands, those games tend to fill up. Keep up with the Hug Band, cheer, and the fight song which is always entertaining. The weather forecast will be as high as 79’F with as low as 44’F. Stick around after the game because immediately following the end of the contest, the Valley Cup will be awarded to the winning team.

-Pablo Nava Duran

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