The fourth weekend of the Ohio High
School Football Playoffs has kicked off. State Semifinals
in Division II, IV and VI were contested Friday across the state. Click here to see
what we learned Friday and who is playing who next Friday in the state finals!
Five Things We Learned Friday: State Semifinals
1. There will be no three-peat for Alter: In its quest for a third straight D-IV state final, Kettering Alter fell one-point shy. The nights lost to Columbus Hartley 29-28 in the state semifinals. Alter, which survived brutal Region 16, trailed 21-0 in the second quarter before scoring just seconds before half. The Knights tacked on 21 more second half points to take a 28-21 lead. Hartley battled back to score a TD and then went for two and the win and got it. The Hawks will play in their first state final since 1986 when they beat Castalia Margaretta for the D-IV title at Ohio Stadium.
2. Shadyside earns another shot at the MAC: Shadyside is one of Southeast Ohio’s premier football programs and one of its most storied. The Tigers own 12 state playoff berths and punched a ticket to their second state final in school history with a 28-13 win over Mogadore in the D-VI state semifinals. Their reward? Another meeting with the Midwest Athletic Conference. In 2006 the Tigers made their first state final with an offense that averaged 47.5 points in the first four rounds of the playoffs. They faced Maria Stein Marion Local in the state final at Canton’s Fawcett Stadium and got shutout 17-0. This year, Shadyside will face Delphos St. John’s, which is making its third straight appearance in the D-VI state final and its seventh overall. The undefeated Blue Jays, ranked No. 1 in the JJHuddle D-VI Power Poll, are 5-1 all-time in state finals and have won 41 of their last 44 games. Oh yeah, back in 2006 – Shadyside beat Mogadore in the state semifinals.
3. Déjà vu all over again: Despite holding a 10-0 lead on Maple Heights, Mentor Lake Catholic fell to the Mustangs 27-17 in the D-II state semifinals. Last year in the state semifinals, Maple Heights ousted the Cougars 21-17.
4. Don’t count Trotwood-Madison – or its coach – out: For years, Trotwood head coach Maurice Douglass has taken shots from the opposition for his less than stellar record in regards to strict adhesion of OHSAA guidelines. In fact in 2008, Douglass was suspended for three games by Ohio’s governing body for recruiting improprieties. But regardless of all that, Douglass, who has sent over 100 kids to college in eight years, has the Rams in their second state title game ever and first since he was a player. A former University of Kentucky star and 11-year NFL veteran (Bears and Giants), Douglass was a RB and DB on the 1981 Trotwood team that lost to Cleveland Benedictine in the D-II final at the Akron Rubber Bowl. Since then, the Rams have made five playoff berths – all of which have come with Douglass as coach. Trotwood’s latest postseason trip has them in the D-II state final. The Rams trailed Uniontown Lake 27-7 in the state semifinals at Gahanna, but scored 27 straight points – including the final TD with five seconds left – to win.
5. Chagrin Falls headed back to Stark County: Last year the Tigers put together a 14-0 record and earned a berth in their first state final. Chagrin Falls lost 37-7 to Kettering Alter in the D-IV finale. This year, despite some heavy graduation losses, the Tigers are headed back to Stark County thanks to a 21-3 win over Orrville. Chagrin Falls forced five turnovers against the Red Riders and didn’t allow them to complete a pass until the fourth quarter.
Maple Heights 27, Mentor Lake Catholic 17
Trotwood-Madison 34, Uniontown Lake 27
State Final: Maple Heights (14-0) vs Trotwood-Madison
Friday (Dec. 3): 7 p.m. at Massillon’s Paul Brown Tiger Stadium
Chagrin Falls 21, Orrville 3
Hartley 29, Kettering Alter 28
State Final: Chagrin Falls (13-1) vs Columbus Hartley
Friday (Dec. 3): 11 a.m. at Massillon’s Paul Brown Tiger Stadium
Delphos St. John’s 49, Sidney Lehman Catholic 7
Shadyside 28, Mogadore 13
State Final: Delphos St. John’s (14-0) vs Shadyside (13-1)
Friday (Dec. 3): 3 p.m. at Canton’s Fawcett Stadium