Delphos St. John’s is headed back to Stark County in search of its fifth state title. The Blue Jays are 4-0 in their previous trips. Hopewell-Loudon is back for the second straight year. Do the Chieftains get title No. 1?
Much is made of the Midwest Athletic Conference for two reasons: One, the teams hoard state titles. Two, nine of the 10 school systems are public.
Friday, conversely, a pair of parochial schools with MAC connections got together to decide a berth in the Division VI state championship game.
Delphos St. John’s is a MAC member. Sidney Lehman Catholic was denied access by the conference in 1999. The Cavaliers are now and independent.
They’re also on their way to turn in equipment.
DSJ flexed its MAC-muscle again, this time advancing to its fifth Division VI state title game with a convincing 32-13 win over Lehman at Wapakoneta’s Harmon Field. The Blue Jays are undefeated in their previous four trips to Stark County and will attempt next Friday to become just the eighth school in state history to win five or more titles.
DSJ was 2-8 last season and takes a 12-2 record into the final. Its only losses are to Coldwater and Marion Local.
Last season Bascom Hopewell-Loudon made its first state final and lost to Ohio’s most storied small school parochial program – Newark Catholic. Now the Chieftains get a crack at the second most storied – DSJ.
H-L trounced Malvern in the other state semifinal at Ashland’s Community Stadium, 55-20. Led by standout QB Tyler Brown, the Chieftains scored on their first four possessions en route to a 28-7 halftime lead.
DSJ employs a devastating ground game, while H-L relies heavily on Brown’s arm. Ball control versus controlled chaos.
Delphos St. John’s 32, Sidney Lehman Catholic 13
Bascom Hopewell-Loudon 55, Malvern 20
DIVISION VI STATE FINAL
Who: Delphos St. John’s (12-2) vs Bascom Hopewell-Loudon (14-0)
When: 11 a.m. Friday
Where: Massillon’s Paul Brown Tiger Stadium
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