Showdown at Hoco

Junior boys in jeans shorts and tank tops. Senior girls in facepaint, compression sleeves, and cleats. Bleachers packed with students brandishing elaborate signs. When these sights can be seen, it is clear that some of the most treasured traditions, Powderpuff and Mandex, have begun.


These two events are an absolute staple of Homecoming Week, and universally beloved by students of all grades. 


While the center of the tradition is a rivalry between juniors and seniors, these events also foster deep camaraderie, respect, and teamwork.


As Senior Powderpuff Coach Preston Mosher said, “[Powderpuff] is really important. It brings us all together and shows different sides of football and what it could be.


Junior Powderpuff Coach John Sing agreed with this sentiment, and said “I think it’s good for connecting with the girls and getting outside of friend groups, and just kind of working together.”


Because of the longevity of Powderpuff and Mandex, there are whole families of Sunnyslope students who were able to appreciate this amazing tradition.


Junior Mandex Coach Melissa Wentworth emphasized the importance of this longevity in Mandex as she said, “It’s something that I remember from when I was younger. So if it’s something that I even remember from when I was like ten, then I think that it’s something that we should keep doing.”


Now, even with the unity and endurance of this tradition, the rivalry still plays a big role in what makes it so exciting. 


Confidence for the seniors was extremely high this year: “We’re the seniors. We’ve got a better squad, and the juniors don’t really know anything,” said Mosher.


However, Junior coaches and players also held a lot of optimism in their abilities.


“I’m pretty confident because they [junior players] are confident. The seniors have a lot of good players, but we’re the underdog,” said Wentworth.


In Mandex, the Juniors’ confidence seemed well earned at first, as they scored the first point of the game thanks to Chase Udall; however, the Seniors would end up pulling away and taking the first set.


Each team went back and forth after that, but in the end, the Seniors were able to pull away and secure another in a long line of victories.


Some standout players from both sides were: Cedric Tinard and Ben Malloney for the Seniors, and Preston Kasaovak and Diegi Lovsey for the Juniors.


The Powderpuff game was a similar showing of Senior dominance, as they were able to secure a 12-6 victory over the Juniors.


The Seniors got out to a lead early, and didn’t let go, despite valiant Junior efforts to come back.


Although players on both ends made amazing plays during both Mandex and Powderpuff, the student sections for each team also had a huge impact.


Tons of Juniors and Seniors came out to support their classmates, and it was an amazing 

example of the previously mentioned unity that this tradition brings.


“Being in the student section with everyone was a really cool experience and it’s probably my favorite part of the tradition, “ said Junior Max Brauer.


Signs, facepaint, megaphones, and plenty of chants were present at both of these events, and they created an outstanding atmosphere for the players. 


With such unity, competition, and school spirit, it is clear why Powderpuff and Mandex have become the treasured traditions they are today.