Managing editor Eric Frantz takes a look at some of the key Week 5
match ups in the Miami Valley. Items of
note…Fort Recovery looks to record its third MAC win in a season for the first time in history when it hosts Anna; Wayne travels to Northmont in pivotal D-I match up; and undefeateds meet in Covington with Buccaneers hosting upstart Twin Valley South.
The surprises just keep coming.
Heading into the halfway point of the high school season no one would have envisioned Fort Recovery and Parkway being 3-1 and Versailles being 1-3. Yet that’s where we stand.
Other surprise teams, both good and bad, include: Twin Valley South (4-0), Brookville (4-0), Oakwood (4-0), Northridge (3-1), Bellbrook (1-3) and Thurgood Marshall (0-4).
Week 5 is sure to add to the intrigue. Below we preview the Miami Valley’s top upcoming games.
Trotwood-Madison (3-1) at Beavercreek (2-2): Last season’s game went down to the wire with Trotwood winning 11-10. The Rams could use the win to help garner some playoff points, while Creek could us the win to build some additional confidence heading into next week’s showdown with Centerville. This game features two of the area’s top QBs in Trotwood’s Domonick Britt and Creek’s Zach Domicone.
Indian Lake (2-2) at Bellefontaine (4-0): CBC Kenton Trail Division opener for both. After a 2-0 start with wins over Spencerville and Jonathan Alder, Lakers have lost two straight to Lehman and Tippecanoe. Bellefontaine – behind the duo of QB Keith Morgan and back Sean Egler – looks like a D-III state title contender. Key will be rather or not Lakers and linebacker Matt Marshall can contain Morgan and Egler.
Xenia (2-2) at Centerville (2-2): Both teams are coming off losses to quality opponents and need to win to keep postseason hopes alive. Game features several of the area’s top players, including Xenia’s Aston Jackson (RB) and Centerville’s David Fleming (QB) and James Cravens (RB). Old rivalry game dating back to Western Ohio League days.
St. Henry (3-1) at Coldwater (3-1): Speaking of rivalries, this one is near the top of the list. Both teams have Marion Local to thank for their losses, and the loser can pretty much count themselves out of the MAC race. Game also carries importance in playoff race. In three wins, Cavaliers have outscored Anna, Kenton and New Bremen 107-22. Redskins are young with sophomores starting at QB and RB.
Twin Valley South (4-0) at Covington (4-0): After going 2-28 the last three years, Twin Valley South is undefeated. Odds are the Panthers will suffer their first loss Friday. Covington has dominated CCC play for a decade and doesn’t appear ready to loosen its stranglehold. Interesting aspect is first-year Covington coach Dave Miller led TVS to its last win over Covington in 1999.
Lehman Catholic (2-2) at Fort Loramie (3-1): Big game between two independents fighting for playoff spots in Division VI, Region 24. Cavaliers made playoffs last season and have been seven times total. Redskins – a third-year program – are trying to earn their first postseason berth after finishing 10th and ninth the last two years. In two previous meetings, Lehman has outscored Loramie 70-39. Redskins also trying to bounce back after suffering first loss last week, while Lehman is riding two-game win streak after opening with losses to Anna and Milton-Union.
Anna (3-1) at Fort Recovery (3-1): Before season started Anna would have been heavy favorite in this contest. Now things are different. With two MAC wins already (over Minster and Versailles) Fort Recovery has already matched its best conference season in school history. The Indians, which started football in 1995, went 2-5 in the MAC in 1997. Since then, Fort Recovery hasn’t won more than one MAC game in any season. Anna, which is coming off a loss to Coldwater, will look to right the ship after a disastrous first quarter last week (outscored 24-0; two defensive TDs) put it in a hole to deep to dig out of.
Valley View (3-1) at Milton-Union (4-0): Spartans will be fired up after loss at Oakwood last week left bad taste in their mouths. Milton-Union is a pleasant surprise this season. Bulldogs lost 12 seniors from last year’s team that made the regional finals but might be better overall this season. Defensively, Milton – led by linebacker Tyler Wilson – has allowed 23 points.
Wayne (3-1) at Northmont (2-2): Ultimately a D-I playoff game between two GWOC contenders. T-Bolts scored 41 points in win over Miamisburg last week after scoring 13 total in back-to-back losses to Pittsburg (Pa.) Central Catholic and Centerville. Wayne has won three straight after season opening loss to nationally ranked Colerain.
Bellbrook (1-3) at Franklin (3-1): Bellbrook’s playoff hopes aren’t completely gone, but Eagles can’t drop another game this season. That’s a stiff test considering the Eagles are the only member of the SWBL Southwest Division that has a losing record. Defensively Bellbrook must get better. The Eagles are allowing 36.8 points per game. Franklin continues its resurgence under head coach Rodney Roberts. The Wildcats lost at Milton-Union last week and Bellbrook’s ground game will offer a similar challenge.
Hamilton Badin (2-2) at Alter (4-0) at Fairmont: This is classic match up of air (Badin) against ground (Alter). The Rams are led by the GCL’s top passer in junior Zach Toerner who has 980 yards and 13 TDs in four games. Toerner has also rushed for 263 yards and four TDs. The Knights counter with one of the GCL’s top ground games, paced by senior RB Corey Roark. Last year Alter scored a 17-10 win.
Versailles (1-3) at Delphos St. John’s (1-3): It’s a shock that both these traditional MAC and state powers are 1-3. It’s an even bigger shock that one of them is going to be 1-4. Each has a win over winless Minster.