All three high schools will open their 2011 football seasons this weekend, with taking on and T hosting rival Howell.
Despite it being the first game of the season, both match-ups look to hold serious implications.
Toms River South is coming off an 0-10 season, and after Bill Hill was fired in December, Ron Signorino, Jr. takes the helm of the Indians and looks to bring winning back to the South side.
"My vision is to bring everyone, the players, fans, parents and student body, all together," he said.
The Indians will look to run a triple-option against the stingy Toms River East squad, who looks forward to building off of a 5-5 record in 2010 in Charlie Diskin’s sixth season as head coach.
“The first game is always so important,” Diskin said, “You always want to start off on the right foot because it always creates momentum going forward.”
Diskin also noted the fact that it’s against a cross-town rival only add to the eventful opening night game.
“You’re never going to over-look a sister school,” he said, “The kids have been working towards this game all summer long and they are definitely looking forward to it.
“We are very familiar with coach Sig[norino]. Jr, so we know that he is going to run a very dangerous offensive system and we need to be ready.”
Across town, Toms River North will take on the Rebels, opening the second straight season against Howell.
Last year, with North as a heavy favorite, the Rebels powered their way to a 48-17 victory over the Mariners.
“We know how big that first game is going to be for us,” Mariners head coach Chip Labarca, Jr. said, “They have an extremely talented team and they are bring back their quarterback [Ryan Davies] for his senior year.”
Despite the loss last year, Toms River North was able to finish strong with a 9-3 record, although Labarca, Jr. said a win would be very important to start of 2011.
The Indians and Raiders will kick off on Friday, Sept. 9 at 7 p.m. and Toms River East high school, while the Mariners and Rebels will play at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 10 at Toms River North high school.