ASHBURN, Va. (WUSA) -- Like any great football rivalry, the Battle of the Burn is rooted in geography, skill and coaching history.
Friday night, Ashburn's cross-town competitors, Stone Bridge and Broad Run, will take the field for what has developed into one of the fiercest football rivalries in Northern Virginia.
"I know a lot of my friends are siked for the game and this stadium's going to be packed," said Broad Run senior captain Connor Keating. "It's energy."
Last year, Stone Bridge defeated Broad Run, 31-30. It was the first time the Spartans and the Bulldogs had played each other since 2004.
"It was an exciting football game for the fans," remembered Broad Run head coach Matt Griffis. "You have that friendly competition because all these kids have grown up together playing sports ... they've all been part of the same community: Ashburn."
The players aren't the only ones on the field with history. Before taking the job at Broad Run, Griffis spent ten years at Stone Bridge with head coach Mickey Thompson. Including Griffis' time on Thompson's staff before moving to Stone Bridge, the two coached together for a total of 15 years.
"I'm excited about competing against old friends," said Griffis.
Stone Bridge claimed a Virginia AAA, Division 5 state title in 2007. This season, the Bulldogs are 3-0 and have a squad led by Division I talent in nationally ranked quarterback Ryan Burns (Stanford) and defensive end Jonathan Allen (Alabama).
Broad Run snagged back-to-back AA, Division 4 state titles in 2008 and 2009. They're heading into Friday's match-up 1-2. Players to watch are sophomore quarterback Brady Reitzel and sophomore running back Chuck Davis.
Students at both schools are collaborating to host a food drive and sell t-shirts to raise money for the Capital Area Food Bank during the game.
"It's very exciting. The kids look forward to this. Numerous kids come home from college to go to the game," said Stone Bridge athletic director Dave Hembach. "It's pretty special."