In the past couple of Cook Inlet Conference football seasons, a meeting between South and Service has been a game any self-respecting fan had to mark on their calendar.
This year is no different. The southside rivals are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 going into Saturday's 7 p.m. game at Anchorage Football Stadium.
Service won last season's regular-season meeting 21-14, taking the lead for good with a third-quarter touchdown. South bounced back to beat the Cougars in the state title game and put the overall series in the Wolverines' favor, 6-5.
The Wolverines and Cougars have met in the state title game in each of the last two seasons, with Service claiming the title in 2011.
Both teams are the class of the league again this season. Top-ranked South is in first place with a 4-1 overall record and 4-0 CIC record. The Wolverines have used smothering defense and a relentless running game to outscore CIC opponents 162-13.
Second-ranked Service (4-1, 3-1 CIC) is second in the CIC and relies heavily on the arm of C.J. Toomer. The senior signal caller is the league's top passer with 1,294 yards and 17 touchdowns. Service has outscored CIC opponents 163-74.
With just two weekends remaining in the CIC regular-season schedule after this one, the winner of the South-Service game will be tough to knock from the top of the standings.
Since South High opened in the fall of 2004, South and Service have met 11 times on the gridiron. South won the first five meetings and Service has won five of the last six, giving the Wolverines a 6-5 edge in the rivalry.
Five of the 11 games have been decided by a touchdown or less. One was decided in overtime.
South and Service have battled for the last two state championships. Since 2004, South has played for the title three times, winning twice. Service has played for it four times, winning twice.
The all-time series:
2012 -- Service 21, South 14 (regular season)
2012 -- South 28, Service 19 (state championship)
2011 -- Service 48, South 13 (regular season)
2011 -- Service 37, South 23 (state championship)
2010 -- Service 44, South 26
2009 -- Service 18, South 15
2008 -- South 14, Service 7
2007 -- South 35, Service 28
2006 -- South 26, Service 6
2005 -- South 45, Service 6
2004 -- South 21, Service 20 (OT)
Week 6 schedule
Nikiski 46, Vosnesenka 6
6 p.m. -- Eielson at West Valley
7 p.m. -- West at Dimond
7 p.m. -- East vs. Bartlett, Anchorage Football Stadium
7 p.m. -- Barrow at Monroe
7 p.m. -- North Pole at Colony
7 p.m. -- Lathrop at Palmer
7 p.m. -- Wasilla at Houston
7 p.m. -- Juneau J.V. at Ketchikan
2 p.m. -- Chugiak at Eagle River
2 p.m. -- Kenai at Skyview
2 p.m. -- Thunder Mtn. at Kodiak
2 p.m. -- Homer at Soldotna
2 p.m. -- Seward at Valdez
7 p.m. -- Service vs. South, AFS
8 p.m. -- Pemberton (B.C.) at Juneau
Through Week 5
|Lui Faamasino, West||76||501||6||6.6|
|J.J. Tanuvasa, Dimond||42||314||2||7.5|
|Roman Stephan, South||38||242||1||6.4|
|Kelley Coleman, Dimond||47||237||1||5.0|
|C.J. Toomer, Service||82||152||1,294||17||2|
|Jeremiah Maga, Dimond||42||84||568||6||8|
|Zyrelle Jones, Bartlett||39||94||415||4||5|
|Peter Kott, Chugiak||23||67||413||2||5|
|Tyrone Davis, West||29||51||410||5||3|
|Leroy Elliot, West||19||371||5||19.5|
|Edress Irving, Bartlett||18||220||1||12.2|
|Nyeem Johnson, Service||16||223||5||13.9|
|Nashon Fromm, Service,||15||277||3||18.5|
|Marquez Buster, Dimond||15||225||2||15.0|
* Statistics are unofficial, and based on game coverage by the ADN and other newspapers, and information provided by varsity coaching staffs. There is no official stat-keeping body for Alaska football.