49 to 7?
Carmel and Pacific Grove high schools used to have a ceremonial bonfire before their football teams squared off in the county’s most storied rivalry.
That was until 1952, when Charlie Higuera and some of his fellow Pacific Grove seniors sneaked over to Carmel to light their rivals’ pile of wood — the night before the bonfire was set to happen.
The antic got Higuera into a heap of trouble, but he can laugh about it now.
“And that was the last time they had a bonfire,” he said Thursday at his Pacific Grove grocery store, Grove Market.
While it extinguished a pregame tradition, the prank helped fuel a rivalry that is still going strong more than a half century later.