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'You played to beat North'

Roulette recounts his memories of the City Game

Roulette recounts his memories of the City Game

November 06, 2006|by TIM KOELBLE

Dick Roulette was as prominent a member of the South Hagerstown football team in the mid-1960s as he has been in the Hagerstown business sector.

Roulette was in the Rebels' starting backfield in 1964 and 1965, helping them to victories over North Hagerstown both years.

In 1964, Roulette rushed 14 times for 79 yards and a touchdown as South marched past North, 21-6. One year later, he gained 51 yards on 12 carries as the Rebels battered North 39-6 for their sixth straight win in the series.

"You always thought about the North game all year long, even in summer during practice," said Roulette. "North and Boonsboro were the premier schools for football, but when it came time for North, you threw the records out. You played to beat North."

Roulette was a 6-foot, 190-pound fullback who also played basketball and golf at South. He was a guard on the Rebels' unit that reached the Maryland state semifinals in 1966.

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Since then, Roulette has done a little bit of everything. He has served in the U.S. Army, been a school teacher, was elected to three terms as a Washington County Commissioner and opened two restaurants - Oliver's Pub in 1984 (which he sold in 1990) and The Grille at Park Circle in 1995, where he still tends to business.

Outdoors, Roulette's 'business' is golf. He has won the Washington County Amateur championship twice and claimed the club championships six times at Beaver Creek and five times at Fountain Head, where he is a member.

In addition to beating North, Roulette has other fond memories of the 1965 game, including being named one of the team's captains.

Don Hull, an end on that South team who went on to serve as the Rebels' head coach in the 1980s, said in an e-mail to The Herald-Mail that he remembered telling Roulette and teammate Alvin Massey with a 12-0 lead at halftime "that even if it ends up this way, it would be a fantastic way for us to end our high school football careers."

"I remember that conversation like it was yesterday," Roulette said.

He recounts a postgame handshake with two of his best school friends, Tim Middlekauff and Gary Hoachlander, both members of the opposing team.

"Where I grew up, there was no room at South Potomac (Middle School) so we were bussed into North Potomac," said Roulette. "So in grades 6 through 8, I am going to school with Tim, Gary and the kids that would be going to North. Those nights against North, we had a little pregame bull session in the middle of the field, but when the game was over, we shook hands."

Roulette, because of his business, doesn't get to many of the rivalry games, "but I still follow the series. At the time we won 39-6, that was the largest margin of any game.

"We had pep rallies outside the stadium, wore our letter sweaters and the school would be decorated," he said. "You always got jacked up to play North."

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