With one week left before we unveil the final NBC 4/JJHuddle Central Ohio Power Poll, all 15 of the ranked teams maintained their rank this week. That might not be the case next week. Davidson faces rival Darby, New Albany tangles with upstart Mount Vernon, Watterson travels to Uniontown Lake, Jonathan Alder is at St. Charles...you get the picture.
JJHUDDLE/NBC4 CENTRAL OHIO POWER POLL WEEK 10
1. Pickerington Central (8-0)
The Tigers churned out over 400 yards on the ground in a 34-10 win over Grove City. Speedy Hammond rushed for 146 yards and two TDs, while Devone Penick added 117 yards and a TD. This week the Tigers travel to Reynoldsburg (3-6).
2. Hilliard Davidson (9-0)
The Wildcats overwhelmed Upper Arlington 34-7 RB Alex Mickley led an offense that rushed for 350 yards with 142 and three TDs on 22 carries. Defensively, the Wildcats didn’t allow a point as the Golden Bears scored on a fumble return. In the last six weeks Davidson has given up 22 points. The only thing standing between Davidson and 10-0 is a meeting with rival Hilliard Darby (8-1).
3. Marion-Franklin (9-0)
Despite 13 penalties, the Red Devils blasted Briggs 40-14. Paul Harris rushed for two TDs and Chad Jones caught a TD and returned a punt for a score as M-F led 33-6 at halftime. This week the Red Devils go for perfection against visiting Columbus South (1-8).
4. New Albany (9-0)
The Eagles tallied 400 yards of total offense and beat Delaware Hayes 41-3. Alex Hake ran for 138 yards and two TDs and QB Bryant Bednarek threw two TDs. This week New Albany hosts Mount Vernon (6-3) in what amounts to an OCC Capital Division championship game.
5. Westerville South (8-1)
Jayshon Jackson ran for three TDs and the Wildcats overcame an early 7-0 deficit to beat Olentangy 52-10. South scored 28 fourth quarter points to pull away. This week the Wildcats host Olentangy Liberty (5-4).
The Next Five
Hilliard Darby (8-1)
Dublin Coffman (7-2)
Canal Winchester (8-1)
Pickerington North (6-3)
1. Watterson (7-1)
The Eagles overcame four turnovers to beat St. Charles 28-21. QB Patrick Rhomberg completed 8-of-14 passes for 140 yards and two TDs and also ran for another score. The win also secured Watterson’s first Central Catholic League Silver Division title since 2006. Watterson closes the regular season this week at Uniontown Lake (7-2).
2. Jonathan Alder (8-1)
The Pioneers crushed Greenfield McClain 77-7 thanks in part to an offense that ran for 352 yards and racked up 479 total. Senior QB Graham Johnston ran for 127 yards and three TDs on six carries. He also threw a TD pass. Alder led 50-0 at halftime. This week the Pioneers face stiff road test at St. Charles (5-3).
3. Licking Valley (7-2)
The Panthers led 21-0 at halftime and 35-0 after three quarters in a 35-13 victory over Columbus Academy. Sophomore RB Drew McArtor ran for two TDs and Braynt trout threw for a TD and ran for another. LV hosts Bexley (3-6) this week.
4. Heath (8-1)
The Bulldogs notched their second shutout of the season with a 28-0 win over host Bexley. RB Donyelle Simpson ran for two TDs and QB Cole Benner threw for two. This week Heath travels to Hebron Lakewood (1-8).
5. DeSales (4-5)
The Stallions nearly pulled off one of the state’s biggest upsets but fell short in a 33-30 loss to Cincinnati LaSalle. Junior RB Warren Ball made a difference in his long awaited return by rushing for 128 yards and two TDs. He exited the game in the third quarter, though, with another injury. DeSales led 30-27 with less then four minutes to play but couldn’t hold on. This week the Stallions are at Cleveland Benedictine (x-x).
The Next Five
Sparta Highland (7-2)
1. Fredericktown (9-0)
The Freddies clinched a Region 19 playoff spot by shutting out Centerburg 66-0. Seven different players scored TDs, including Matt Smith and Austin Hoeflich who each found the end zone twice. This week Fredericktown goes for its second straight 10-0 season against visiting Loudonville (3-6).
2. North Union (9-0)
Last year’s undefeated season was the first in school history. This week the Wildcats go for their second straight at Ridgedale (2-7). NU beat Buckeye Valley 28-7 last week as Clay Hastings scored twice. The Wildcats racked up 409 yards of offense, including 351 on the ground.
3. West Jefferson (9-0)
The Rough Riders scored a big 28-14 road win at Licking Heights and earned at least a share of their fifth straight Mid-State League Cardinal Division title. Sean Prather led the attack by rushing for three TDs. A trip to Liberty Union (6-3) stands between West Jeff and 10-0.
4. Newark Catholic (7-2)
The Green Wave were up 27-0 after three quarters and coasted to a 27-14 win over Whitehall-Yearling. Senior RB Britt Wilder led the way by rushing for 115 yards and two TDs. This week NC hosts Granville (6-3).
5. Fairfield Christian Academy (8-0)
The Knights crushed Bellaire St. John Central 70-14. Now they try to secure the program’s first unbeaten regular season and playoff berth against visiting Grove City Christian (3-6).
The Next Five
Milford Center Fairbanks (7-2)
Grandview Heights (6-3)
Liberty Union (6-3)
Columbus Academy (4-5)