No one knew it on the evening of Sept. 11, 1970, that this particular football game would represent something historic.
That night, Natrona played Lusk — the last time a school now in Class 4A played a school now in Class 1A.
Natrona won, 50-7, an unsurprising margin given the difference in size between the schools.
That’s been a common result when little guys try to take down the big guys.
Sheridan (16-0), Laramie (10-0-1), Cheyenne Central (9-0) and Rock Springs (1-0) are undefeated in their games against current 1A opponents. Natrona (17-1-1) only has one loss to a current 1A team in its history, a 12-0 loss to Midwest in 1926.
That Midwest victory is the only time a current 1A school has beaten a current 4A school not named Gillette. Gillette was once classified as a Class A school, but occupied the same conference as future Class B (and later, 1A) schools Midwest, Upton and Sundance. The Camels have extensive series with all three schools, playing Midwest and Upton 34 times apiece and Sundance 29 times. Gillette has also played Lusk, a former Class A East Conference rival, 17 times; Lusk actually leads that series 10-6-1, the only 4A-1A series in which the 1A team leads all-time. All-time, Gillette is 75-32-7 against current 1A teams.
The other four Class 4A schools (Cheyenne East, Cheyenne South, Evanston and Kelly Walsh) have never played any current Class 1A schools.
Of the current 1A schools who have played current 4A schools, the team with the most success to its name is Midwest. The Oilers, a Class A school through the 1940s and Class B/2A through the early 1980s, beat Gillette 12 times and Natrona once. However, Midwest also lost a lot, with just the 13 victories in 64 tries against 4A competition (13-48-3).
Lusk has 10 victories against 4A schools, while Sundance has nine and Upton five. All of the victories for those three schools came against Gillette. All-time, Lusk is 10-17-2 against 4A competition; Sundance is 9-24-2; Upton is 5-27-1.
Hanna (0-5), Sunrise (0-1), Lingle (0-1) and Saratoga (0-1) are winless in their attempts against 4A competition.
The other 21 Class 1A 11-man and six-man schools (Pine Bluffs, Southeast, Tongue River, Wright, Cokeville, Rocky Mountain, Shoshoni, Wind River, Wyoming Indian, Hulett, Kaycee, NSI, Rock River, Burlington, Dubois, Farson, Meeteetse, Riverside, St. Stephens, Snake River, Ten Sleep) have never played any 4A competition.
Here’s a breakdown of series involving current 4A schools against current 1A schools:
Cheyenne Central vs Lingle: Central leads 1-0-0
Cheyenne Central vs Lusk: Central leads 1-0-0
Cheyenne Central vs Midwest: Central leads 7-0-0
Gillette vs Lusk: Lusk leads 10-6-1
Gillette vs Midwest: Gillette leads 20-12-2
Gillette vs Sundance: Gillette leads 18-9-2
Gillette vs Upton: Gillette leads 27-5-2
Laramie vs Hanna: Laramie leads 4-0-0
Laramie vs Lusk: Laramie leads 6-0-1
Natrona vs Hanna: Natrona leads 1-0-0
Natrona vs Lusk: Natrona leads 4-0-0
Natrona vs Midwest: Natrona leads 11-1-1
Natrona vs Sunrise: Natrona leads 1-0-0
Rock Springs vs Saratoga: Rock Springs leads 1-0-0
Sheridan vs Midwest: Sheridan leads 10-0-0
Sheridan vs Sundance: Sheridan leads 6-0-0