The OHSAA state football playoffs roll on into the regional finals. The field has been cut to 48 and 24 more will go home
after Friday and Saturday. Here’s what you need to know – including game times and locales – for the Elite Eight.
Heading into the regional finals, there’s one game in particular that sticks out for several different reasons. Before the season started it’s also a game absolutely no one could have predicted: Circleville Logan Elm against Columbus Eastmoor in the Division III Region 12 final. The two will met Saturday at 7 p.m. at Gahanna-Lincoln Stadium.
Last year Logan Elm went 0-10. Insert veteran Scott Bartholomew as head coach and now the Braves are looking at the best season in school history. Logan Elm completed its first 10-0 regular season and captured the Mid-State League Buckeye Division title with a Week 10 victory over fellow undefeated Canal Winchester. Since then the Braves have captured the first two playoff wins in school history.
Eastmoor went 9-1 last season with Mr. Football candidate Isaiah Pead, and missed the playoffs, finishing ninth in Region 12. This year the Warriors went 9-1 as well, but made the postseason as a No. 4 seed. They hosted a home playoff game and took out some frustration for being left out last season by thumping Germantown Valley View in the regional quarterfinals. This past week Eastmoor upended undefeated Thornville Sheridan thanks in part to quarterback Malon Johnson who completed 13-of-20 passes for 191 yards and three touchdowns.
It’s too bad one of these rides stops in a few days.
THEY DID WHAT (in the Regional Semifinals)?
Tyler Brooks, Hannibal River: Senior RB carried the ball 19 times for 184 yards and four TDs in a 45-15 win over Glouster Trimble in a D-VI Region 23 semifinal.
Cory Klenke, Coldwater: Senior QB completed 15-of-24 passes for 355 yards and three TDs and ran for another score and 56 yards on eight carries in a 35-7 win over Dayton Oakwood in a D-IV Region 16 semifinal.
Tyler Fortner, Tallmadge: Senior RB had 256 yards and three TDs in 27-7 win over Madison in the D-II Region 5 semifinals.
Matt Wilde, Norwalk St. Paul: Senior RB carried the ball 19 times for 200 yards and four TDs in a 34-0 win over McDonald in a D-VI Region 21 semifinal.
Tyler Tucci, Malvern: Senior QB ran for 203 yards and accounted for five TDs (ran for three, threw for one and returned a kickoff 86 yards for another) in a 53-24 win over Shadyside in a D-VI Region 23 semifinal.
Aaron Craft, Liberty-Benton: Junior QB had 142 yards rushing and scored four TDs on 20 carries in a 42-10 win over Archbold. He also completed 10-of-12 passes for 171 yards.
Corey Lisowski, Dover: Senior QB completed 21-of-27 passes for 230 yards and two TDs and ran for 136 yards and another score in a 35-14 win over Canton South in a D-III Region 11 semifinal.
Mike Hanhauser, Perry: Senior RB ran for 169 yards and five TDs on 20 carries in a 47-0 win over Massillon Tuslaw in a D-IV Region 13 semifinal. Hanhauser now has 40 TDs on the season.
Chris Snook, Medina Highland: Senior RB and West Virginia recruit ran for 175 yards and two TDs on 31 carries, blocked a punt that led to a touchdown and returned an interception 24 yards for a touchdown in a 35-0 win over Olentangy Liberty in a D-II Region 6 semifinal.
NEWS, NOTES & NUGGETS
GlenOak Greats: Canton GlenOak’s 28-3 win over Brunswick in a D-I, Region 2 semifinal gave the Golden Eagles their first 10-win season in school history. GlenOak has also won two playoff games in the same season for the first time in history.
Lucky Seven: Louisville defeated Logan 7-0 in a D-II Region 7 semifinal thanks in part to forcing seven turnovers. The Leopards defense also had six sacks and held the Chieftains, who came in averaging 34.3 points, scoreless.
FIVE GAMES YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS
1. Coldwater vs Kettering Alter (D-IV, Region 16): Rematch of last year’s regional semifinal meeting that Coldwater won 59-52 in triple-overtime. The Knights appeared to be on a collision course with Mooney in the state final, but the Cavs rallied from a 21-point deficit twice to record the improbable win. Alter hasn’t forgot. Coldwater and Alter were also ranked Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, in the ONN/Ohio High D-IV Power Poll all season long.
2. Columbus DeSales vs Louisville (D-II, Region 7): Heavily anticipated rematch of last year’s regional final that Louisville won 25-20. Winner is favorite to win state title. DeSales and Louisville have been 1-2, respectively, in the ONN/Ohio High D-II Power Poll since Week 4.
3. Colerain vs Cincinnati Elder (D-I, Region 4): Teams have both been No. 1 in ONN/Ohio High D-I Power Poll during the season and finally meet in much anticipated collision.
4. Hamler Patrick Henry vs Findlay Liberty-Benton (D-V, Region 18): You like offense? Go to this game. Two of the state’s more potent offenses hook up when Liberty-Benton (ranked No. 2 in the ONN/Ohio High D-V Power Poll) squares off with Patrick Henry (No. 3). The duo has outscored their postseason competition 135-17.
5. Bascom Hopewell-Loudon vs Norwalk St. Paul (D-VI, Region 21): Rematch of last year’s regional final that Hopewell-Loudon won 26-14. Match up features the No. 1 team in the ONN/Ohio High D-VI Power Poll (St. Paul) against the No. 3 team (Hopewell-Loudon). Oh yeah, they are both undefeated.
REGIONAL FINAL PAIRINGS (By Steve Helwagen)
DIVISION I – All games 7 p.m. Saturday
Region 1: (1) Cleveland St. Ignatius (11-1) vs. (2) Strongsville (11-1), Parma Byers Field – St. Ignatius is playing for its 13th state final four berth, but just its first since winning the 2001 state title. That championship was the state-record ninth for St. Ignatius.
Region 2: (1) North Canton Hoover (11-1) vs. (2) Canton GlenOak (10-2), Massillon Paul Brown Tiger Stadium – Hoover defeated GlenOak 14-10 in Week 9 at Hoover.
Region 3: (1) Hilliard Davidson (11-1) vs. (3) Pickerington Central (12-0), Upper Arlington Moorehead Memorial Stadium – Pickerington Central features a pair of OSU commitments in DB Jamie Wood and LB Zach Boren.
Region 4: (1) Cincinnati Colerain (11-1) vs. (3) Cincinnati Elder (11-1), University of Cincinnati Nippert Stadium – This game will be televised live by Sports Time Ohio and Time Warner Cable. It is a match-up of recent state champions as Colerain took the title in 2004 and Elder won back-to-back crowns in 2002-03.
DIVISION II – All games 7:30 p.m. Friday
Region 5: (5) Akron Hoban (8-4) vs. (6) Tallmadge (9-3), Twinsburg Tiger Stadium
Region 6: (2) Sylvania Southview (12-0) vs. (4) Medina Highland (11-1), Kalahari Field at Huron Memorial Stadium
Region 7: (1) Columbus DeSales (12-0) vs. (2) Louisville (12-0), Mansfield Senior Arlin Field – Louisville defeated DeSales 25-20 in a regional final last year. They meet as unbeatens this time around. This game will be televised live by Sports Time Ohio and Time Warner Cable.
Region 8: (1) Cincinnati Winton Woods (11-1) vs. (3) Cincinnati Anderson (10-2), Princeton Mancuso Field – Defending champion Anderson bids for return to state final four. Winton Woods is one of four teams remaining that claimed their first-ever playoff win this year.
DIVISION III – All games 7 p.m. Saturday
Region 9: (1) Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit (9-2) vs. (2) Aurora (10-2), Solon Stewart Field – Aurora features OSU verbal OL Adam Bellamy.
Region 10: (1) Avon (12-0) vs. (7) Sunbury Big Walnut (10-2), Ashland Community Stadium – Defending state champion Big Walnut needs win to get back to state final four.
Region 11: (1) Dover (11-1) vs. (2) Newark Licking Valley (11-1), Zanesville Sulsberger Memorial Stadium – Licking Valley won the region a year ago. Valley features OSU verbal RB-LB Storm Klein.
Region 12: (2) Circleville Logan Elm (12-0) vs. (4) Columbus Eastmoor Academy (11-1), Gahanna Lincoln Stadium – Logan Elm’s amazing run from 0-10 a year ago to 12-0 and a shot at the state final four continues. Logan Elm is among the four first-time playoff winners this year.
DIVISION IV – All games 7:30 p.m. Friday
Region 13: (1) Steubenville (12-0) vs. (3) Perry (11-1), Warren Mollenkopf Stadium – Steubenville is vying for its third state final four and state championship in four years, although the school’s two most recent titles (2005-06) were won in Division III.
Region 14: (4) Genoa Area (12-0) vs. (7) Ottawa-Glandorf (8-4), BGSU Doyt Perry Stadium
Region 15: (1) Martins Ferry (11-1) vs. (2) New Lexington (11-1), Zanesville Sulsberger Memorial Stadium
Region 16: (1) Coldwater (12-0) vs. (6) Kettering Alter (10-2), Troy Memorial Stadium – Coldwater won the state title last year. Coldwater is vying for its third state final four berth and championship in four years. Coldwater features OSU verbal FB Adam Homan.
DIVISION V – All games 7 p.m. Saturday
Region 17: (1) Youngstown Ursuline (12-0) vs. (3) Kirtland (12-0), Warren Mollenkopf Stadium – Ursuline one win from a return trip to the state final four, but it must win this battle of unbeatens to get there. Kirtland is among the four first-time playoff winners this year.
Region 18: (1) Hamler Patrick Henry (12-0) vs. (2) Findlay Liberty-Benton (12-0), BGSU Doyt Perry Stadium – Unbeatens collide in regional final rematch, won by Patrick Henry 44-27 a year ago.
Region 19: (5) Columbus Ready (8-2) vs. (6) Baltimore Liberty Union (11-1), Hamilton Township Hamilton Field – Ready won the regional title a year ago. Liberty Union is making the most of its first playoff appearance since 1999.
Region 20: (4) West Jefferson (10-2) vs. (7) Maria Stein Marion Local (10-2), Piqua Alexander Stadium at Purk Field – Marion Local stopped West Jeff 24-0 in last year’s regional final and went on to win the state title. This game will be carried on a live audio webcast by www.pressboxproductions.net
DIVISION VI – All games 7:30 p.m. Friday
Region 21: (1) Bascom Hopewell-Loudon (12-0) vs. (2) Norwalk St. Paul (12-0), Fremont Don Paul Stadium at Harmon Field – Hopewell-Loudon downed St. Paul 26-14 in last year’s regional final. Teams collide as unbeatens this time around.
Region 22: (1) Ada (12-0) vs. (3) Delphos St. John’s (10-2), Findlay Donnell Stadium
Region 23: (1) Hannibal River (12-0) vs. (2) Malvern (12-0), Steubenville Reno Field, Harding Stadium – Unbeatens collide to determine regional champion. Malvern is among the four first-time playoff winners.
Region 24: (1) Mechanicsburg (12-0) vs. (2) Sidney Lehman (10-1), Clayton Northmont Good Samaritan Stadium