What We Learned: State Finals Friday

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Kirtland’s Christian Hauber scores a TD while Damon Washington celebrates. Kirtland won the D-V title.

Ohio High School Football State Championships in Divisions II, III and V were handed out Friday in Stark County. See who won and what we learned on the first day of the state finals. There were some fireworks – and a new state finals TD record set…


WHAT WE LEARNED

1. Kirtland’s Christian Hauber is a beast: The Kirtland senior RB/LB came into the D-V final against Coldwater with a lot of hype and delivered. He led the Hornets to their first state title by leading a punishing attack in a 28-7 win over the Cavs at Massillon’s Paul Brown Stadium. Kirtland’s ground-oriented offense churned out 421 yards and dominated time of possession 30:28-17:32. Hauber was the main reason why. The Air Force recruit carried the ball 30 times for 196 yards and two TDs. At the end of the first half Hauber looked to be lost to an apparent ankle injury, but he emerged from the locker room at halftime and sacked Coldwater’s Austin Bruns on the Cavs first series of the second half. After Coldwater cut the lead to 14-7 at the end of the third quarter, Hauber ran for 71 yards on the ensuing drive and capped it with a 5-yard TD run.

2. Coldwater coming back? The Cavaliers have made three straight D-V state finals. The question is will they make it four? Odds are good. Coldwater returns 15 starters including seven on each side of the ball. On offense the Cavs return their leading rusher and passer in junior QB Austin Bruns and their top two receivers, including junior stud Caleb Siefring (16 TDs, seven INTs). They also bring back three starting offensive lineman and their starting RB. On defense Coldwater loses an end, two LBS and a safety. Bruns, a rising junior prospect, completed 18-of-34 passes for 249 yards and carried the ball 14 times for 75 yards and a TD against Kirtland.

3. Kirtland’s Defense is stingy: In its five playoff games Kirtland’s defense allowed just 29 total points and no team scored double-digits on the Hornets. Overall, through 15 games, Kirtland – which finished undefeated for the first time in school history – allowed a measly 98 points. Kirtland had six shutouts and allowed just two teams to reach double-digits. Pepper Pike Orange scored 16 points on Kirtland in Week 3 and Cuyahoga Heights scored 12 in Week 5.

4. Mooney moves into a second place tie for most football titles:
The Cardinals 21-14 victory over Springfield Shawnee in the D-III final at Canton’s Fawcett Stadium earned them their eighth state championship and moved them into a second place tie with Newark Catholic for the most football titles in state history. St. Ignatius is No. 1 with 10 titles. Mooney was led by senior RB Roosevelt Griffin who ran for 120 yards and a TD on 21 carries. Senior QB P.J. Quinn added 38 yards and two short TDs (2- and 1-yards) on 14 carries.

5. Clark County denied a title:
Springfield Shawnee was trying to become the first school from Clark County to win a state football title but dropped the D-III final 21-14 to Mooney. The only other appearance by a Clark County-school in a state championship was in 1991 when Springfield Catholic Central fell 20-7 to Warren JFK in the D-IV final. Of the state’s 88 counties, less than half (43) have produced a state football champion. It was incorrectly reported in the state finals program that 44 counties had won a title, but the book credited Kettering Alter – a Montgomery County school – as being in Greene County.

The County with the most state football titles is Cuyahoga with 24 (St. Ignatius has 10). Hamilton County has 22 titles, Franklin has 15, Mahoning has 14 (added one today with Mooney’s win) and Mercer has 12. Cuyahoga (St. Ignatius) and Mercer (Marion Local) counties have teams in finals Saturday.

6. Trotwood-Madison has another 2,000-yard back:
Heading into this season people wondered how junior RB Isreal Green would fair filling in for graduated RB Antwan Gilbert who had back-to-back 2,000-yard seasons for the Rams and led them to the D-II title game last season. The answer? Green has more than held his own. Green gave Trotwood its third straight season with a 2,000-yard rusher (and first state title) when he had 327 yards and six TDs on 35 carries in a 42-28 win over Avon in the D-II final at Massillon’s Paul Brown Tiger Stadium. Green finished the season with 2,085 yards and 27 TDs on 222 carries. In the first alone, Green ran for 229 yards and four TDs on 21 carries. 

7. There’s a new state finals TD record:
Remember Trotwood’s Isreal Green? His D-II performance set a record for most rushing yards in a D-II final (327) and also broke the all-finals rushing TD and TD (six) records. The previous record for rushing TDs in a game was five, set by Hilliard Davidson’s Bo Delande (in the 2006 D-I final) and Youngstown Ursuline’s Delbert Fergusen (in the 2000 D-IV final). Those two and Youngstown Ursuline’s Akise Teague (scored five TDs in the 2010 D-V final) held the record for total TDs. Green’s six TDs also gave him the all-finals record for total individual points, breaking Delande’s mark of 32.

Green’s TD tally marked the third straight season the D-II rushing TD record has been set or tied. In 2009, Winton Woods’ Dominique Brown ran for a then-record four TDs in a win over Maple Heights and last year, Maple Heights’ Shaq Washington ran for four TDs in a win over Trotwood. Dayton Chaminade Julienne’s Javon Ringer also had four rushing TDs in the 2002 D-II final against Macedonia Nordonia. Ringer held the previous D-II finals rushing record (251) as well.

8. Avon can fling it:
Despite the loss, the Eagles soared through the air. Senior QB Justin O’Rourke fired 50 passes and completed 27 of them for 325 yards and three TDs. Senior WRs Jacob Mullins (11 catches, 135 yards, two TDs) and Matt Eckhardt (nine catches, 102 yards, TD) had huge games too.

D-V Stat of the Day: Kirtland did not pick up a penalty until a holding call in the fourth quarter of its win over Coldwater. The Hornets ended with two penalties. Coldwater had one.

D-III Stat of the Day II: Springfield Shawnee had more first downs (20-14), yards (318-272) and third down conversions (6-of-13 to 4-of-13) than Mooney – but lost.

D-II Stat of the Day III: Avon ran for one yard on eight carries in its 42-28 loss to Trotwood-Madison in the D-II state final. Trotwood won the time of possession battle 32:11-15:49. The Eagles had the ball for just four minutes and 56 seconds in the first half.

FINAL SCORES

DIVISION V
Kirtland 28, Coldwater 7

DIVISION III
Mooney 21, Springfield Shawnee 14

DIVISION II
Trotwood-Madison 42, Avon 28

PHOTO GALLERY

Kirtland senior RB Christian Hauber ran for 196 yards and two TDs on 30 carries in the Hornets 28-7 win over Coldwater in the D-V Final.

Coldwater junior QB Austin Bruns completed 18-of-34 passes for 249 yards and ran for 75 yards and a TD on 14 carries in a D-V final loss to Kirtland.

Kirtland junior RB Damon Washington ran for 147 yards and two TDs on 18 carries in a 28-7 win over Coldwater in the D-V final.

Springfield Shawnee senior QB Brad Jarzab completed 10-of-29 passes for 122 yards and carried the ball 23 times for 161 yards and two TDs in the Braves 21-14 loss to Youngstown Mooney in the D-III final.

Youngstown Mooney junior DB/RB Marcus McWilson set up the Cardinals third (and game-winning TD) with a second quarter interception in the D-III final. The Cardinals beat Springfield Shawnee 21-14.

Youngstown Mooney senior RB Roosevelt Griffin led Mooney with 120 yards rushing and a TD on 21 carries.

Youngstown Mooney senior QB P.J. Quinn had 38 yards and two short TDs (2- and 1-yards) on 14 carries in the Cardinals 21-14 win over Springfield Shawnee in the D-III state final.

Trotwood-Madison junior RB Isreal Green ran for 327 yards and six Tds on 35 carries in the Rams 42-28 win over Avon in the D-II state final…

…Green’s six TDs set an all-finals record for rushing TDs and total TDs. His 36 points was also an all-finals record. His 327 rushing yards was a D-II finals record.

Avon senior QB Justin O’Rourke completed 27-of-50 passes for 325 yards and three TDs in the Eagles 42-28 loss to Trotwood-Madison in the D-II state final.

Avon senior WR Jacob Mullins cauht 11 passes for 135 yards and two TDs in the Eagles 42-28 loss to Trotwood-Madison in the D-II final.

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