On Nov. 30, members of Oceanside High School’s class of 1984 got together to play in their 38th annual Turkey Bowl football game at School No. 6.
Game Day weather conditions were cold and windy, but sunny. The Turkey Bowl game, which started back in the early 1980’s, is an annual Thanksgiving weekend tradition for a core group of friends with ties going back to second grade at Oceanside School No. 5. As the years passed, new friends made in junior high and high school joined, and the game evolved to include regulars from other Oceanside classes from the ‘80’s and the now extended group’s sons and nephews.
This year’s contest featured a half-time exhibition with the game’s first female on-field participants, Izzie Brown (daughter of Dave Brown, Oceanside High School class of 1984), Katie Lovelock (who will graduate OHS in 2026) and Sophia Perpero (OHS ’26). The speedy Sophia shattered a 37-year gender barrier by becoming the first Lady Sailor to score a Turkey Bowl touchdown.
The main contest featured 20 players, divided as per custom into “blue” and “white” teams. About half the group were second-generation Turkey Bowlers — sons and nephews of OHS alumni from the ‘80s. The extended Murray family contributed six players and also handled the score-keeping and audio/visual tasks. The Blue Team, co-captained by Mike Tricarico (OHS ’84) and Len Bilello (OHS ’84), opened the scoring first on a long touchdown pass from Tricarico to a streaking Brian King (son of Kathy Murray OHS ’85).
The White Team, captained by Kevin Kolano (OHS ’85), tied the score after a drive ending with Joel Woodyear (OHS ’86), making a circus catch on a short pass from Kolanco in the red zone. The game stood tied for some time until Tricarico tossed another long TD, this time to Colin King (son of Kathy Murray OHS ’85). The game ended 3-1 in favor of the Blue Team on a long pass from Tricarico to CJ Schmid (nephew of Mary Beth Schmid OHS ’84).
The youth movement was very evident to the white team’s Anthony Boccio (OHS ’84), who while on defense and scanning who to guard blurted out, “Find me someone with an AARP card to cover, please!” while finding nothing but 18 to 23-year-olds on offense.
After the game, the fun continued with an after party at EGP Gastropub on Long Beach Road in Oceanside, where the group was joined by more than 20 additional classmates and friends to catch up and reminisce about their OHS days. The class of 1984’s 39th Turkey Bowl will take place on the same field on Nov. 28, 2020.