The History of Trinity’s Pride Week

Photo provided by Trinity High School archives
Photo provided by Trinity High School archives

As many of Louisville residents know, last Friday the Trinity High School Shamrocks and the St. Xavier High School Tigers met at L&N Stadium to play against each other in their annual iconic rivalry game. This game marked the 91st time the two varsity teams have played each other in the past 70 years. Throughout the many years, the game has become a week that everyone looks forward to each year.

Each year, Trinity celebrates Pride Week. During the week, the school puts on fun events like Minute to Win It games at lunch, themed dress down days, cookouts after school, and posters hanging in the halls. At the end of the week, a pep rally is held in the Steinhauser gym where the pep club puts on a good show for all the students. For the first time in Trinity history, Trinity swept St. X in all sports throughout all grade levels during the week. With an exciting 45-10 victory for the Varsity football team on Friday night, another great Pride Week was wrapped up. The Shamrocks hope to catch some moment from the win and start a run for the rest of the season.

The famous rivalry game has been a staple of high school football in Louisville for many years. But many people do not know the history of the many games in the past. The two teams first met in 1953 when Trinity’s freshman team beat St. X’s freshman team 7-6. However, in the first varsity game three years later, St. X won 48-0.

In 1958, Trinity pulled off an upset victory beating St. X varsity 13-0 for the first time. Coach Jeep Quire described the game as “the greatest game he had ever seen a Trinity team play.” Legend has it, Coach Quire promised to the team before the game that he would walk back to Trinity if they won. It is said that Coach Quire and a group of excited players, parents, and fans walked back to Trinity in the rain all the way from the Fairgrounds where the game used to be played at the time.

At 1970’s game, Trinity came out on top 7-6. This was the first time a game had a crowd larger than 20,000 people. To put that in perspective, Madison Square Garden only has 19,500 seats. In 1974, both teams met in the regular season and in the playoffs for the first time where St. X won both games.

Going into rivalry week in 1976, St. X had a 31-game win streak which had been held together for three years. However, Trinity was prepared for the game and ended up winning 27-10. 1976 was also a significant year for the Shamrocks as they went on to beat St. X again in the playoffs, which was the first time Trinity beat St. X twice in one season. Later that year the Rocks went on to win the state championship.

The 1983 playoff matchup was one to remember. In Trinity teacher Mike Domzalski’s opinion, it is the greatest game ever (which he acknowledges may be biased since he witnessed it in his childhood). At the end of regulation, both teams were tied 14-14, sending them to overtime. Trinity scored (and made the extra point), which made the game 21-14. On 4th down, St. X lined up and scored the touchdown: 21-20. The St. X kicker lined up for the extra point to tie the game in overtime and missed, which sent the St. X Tigers home, and advanced the Shamrocks to the state championship. They won state and finished the season 14-0.

The 1990s were a dominant time for Trinity. The game in 1990 was the first time that a crowd surpassed 30,000 people in attendance and saw Trinity win 13-7. Later that year, Trinity won its third state championship in a row, which was the first time in school history. In 1991 Trinity set a state record, winning 50 games in a row. The first time the schools met in the state championship was in 1997. St. X won the anticlimactic game ending in a 3-0 score. This was the last time the two teams played each other in the location formerly known as Cardinal Stadium.

In 2005, the Shamrocks lost a crushing defeat to St. X in the regular season, losing 48-16. The two teams met again in the state championship where the Tigers were heavy favorites to win after their blowout win earlier in the year. The Shamrocks rallied together and won 14-6, taking their 16th state championship. The game in 2006 was probably the strangest in the series’ history. The game started normally when Trinity took an early lead, scoring 10-0. Then a massive storm hit the field and raged on for a long time. The game ended up getting canceled because of the storm, and Trinity was given the win, which was a very controversial decision at the time. In 2008, the attendance record was set at 38,887 people in attendance. The record still stands to this day.

After this year’s game, Trinity has extended its lead over the Tigers: Trinity has won 49 games while St. X has won 40. In addition, there have been two ties. An exciting fact for Shamrocks fans is that Trinity has won 18 of the past 22 games.

Over the years this rivalry has been a date students, parents, and the Louisville community highlight on the calendar every season, and it’s clear it will stay that way for a while. Trinity hopes to keep up their dominant reign in the rivalry just like the teams of the past. The future is bright for our Shamrocks, and the games are sure to be exciting every time they step on the field.

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