Top 9 takeaways from first round of Ohio high school football playoffs

Plus, a first look at regional semifinals
Posted at 1:42 PM, Nov 06, 2016

CINCINNATI -- The first round of the Ohio high school football playoffs is in the books.

Here are nine takeaways from this weekend and a first glimpse at the regional semifinals starting Nov. 11:

1. Colerain-St. Xavier Part II: The perennial powers meet Nov. 11 in a Division I, Region 4 semifinal at 7:30 p.m. at Hamilton. It will be the 34th meeting between the two schools, with St. X leading the series 20-13. Colerain defeated St. X 20-14 in overtime Sept. 2.

“I can give you my first thought on Colerain,” St. X coach Steve Specht said. “Is it really playoff season in Ohio if Colerain and St. X don’t meet up again?” Colerain coach Tom Bolden told Specht in the postgame handshake line Sept. 2 that the two teams would meet in the playoffs. Specht sort of shrugged off that notion at the time -- figuring his team was 0-2 and struggling with injuries. But here they are again, with the winner gaining a trip to the regional final.

St. X defeated Fairfield 35-14 Friday night, while Colerain defeated Springboro by the same score.

2. Sounds familiar: Mason plays Sycamore for the second time in three weeks when the Greater Miami Conference rivals meet up in the Division I regional semifinal Nov. 11 at Barnitz Stadium in Middletown. The Aviators defeated the visiting Comets 17-10 Oct. 28 to help clinch the No. 7 seed. This time, the stakes are even higher -- with a trip to the regional final on the line. Mason (7-4) won its first Division I playoff football game in program history with a 21-20 win over visiting Elder.

PHOTO GALLERY: Mason 21, Elder 20

“It’s big,” Mason coach Brian Castner said. “Fifty-five years Mason football has been around. This is the first Division I win. And you get to do it against Elder that is coached by Doug Ramsey and a great staff. These young men do great things on and off the field.”

Sycamore (7-4), which lost four of its first six games including two overtime losses to begin the season, had 442 total yards in a 42-20 win over Lebanon. Senior running back Ra’Von Bonner, an Illinois commit, had 258 yards rushing and four touchdowns in the victory. He needs one touchdown to earn a spot on the state’s all-time list for career rushing touchdowns. He has 75 entering this week.

3. First meeting: La Salle plays Turpin in a Division II, Region 8 semifinal Friday night at Lakota West, and this has all the ingredients of a classic. This will be the first meeting between the two programs, according to the La Salle athletic department.

Turpin (11-0), which finished No. 2 in the Associated Press statewide poll, defeated Harrison 40-14 in the first round Friday night. Turpin senior running back Luke Bohenek, an Air Force commit, rushed for a season-high 226 yards and two touchdowns. La Salle defeated visiting Edgewood 23-21 Friday night. Senior running back Christian Turner -- the Greater Catholic League South division player of the year -- had a season-high 171 yards and a touchdown to help lift the Lancers, who scored all their points in the first half.

La Salle coach Jim Hilvert knew his team would face a significant challenge with just the second wing-T offense it's seen in two seasons (Massillon Perry the other in 2015 state final).

“Obviously, we have a big ‘X’ on our backs,” Hilvert said. “They are very well-coached. It was an eye-opener for our guys.”

Senior linebacker Andre Evans had a season-high 17 tackles.

4. Franklin’s late rally: Franklin’s undefeated season continued Saturday night with plenty of drama. The Wildcats (11-0), the No. 1 seed in Division III, Region 12, defeated Tipp City Tippecanoe 41-40. Franklin had to rally from a 21-0 deficit. Junior Ryan Montgomery had a 5-yard touchdown run with 18 seconds left to lift the Wildcats, according to the Dayton Daily News. He finished with 20 carries for 200 yards.

“These kids just battled on and on and on,” Franklin coach Brad Childers told the Daily News. “We kept our focus on the next play. All game long, our kids never had the sense the game was out of reach.”

Franklin plays St. Marys Memorial (10-1) at 7 p.m. Saturday at a location to be determined.

5. New Richmond wins classic: New Richmond defeated visiting Mount Healthy 35-33 in another Division III, Region 12 quarterfinal. New Richmond (10-1) plays Trotwood-Madison (9-2) at 7 p.m. Nov. 12 at Mason.

New Richmond sophomore quarterback Josh Anderson was 14 of 22 passing for 230 yards. He also rushed for 121 yards and five touchdowns. Mount Healthy scored late in the game but did not convert for two points, which would’ve tied the game.

“Everything we do in our program is built on our core values, and I just reminded (our team) that their belief in those values is what has got us here,” New Richmond coach Josh Stratton said.

6. Wyoming looking strong: Wyoming won the program’s 675th game Friday night with a 56-0 win over No. 8 seed Unioto. Wyoming senior quarterback Andrew Marty, a Northwestern commit, was 12 of 18 passing for 218 yards and four touchdowns. He’s thrown for 2,705 yards and 38 touchdowns this season. He needs two passing touchdowns to reach the OHSAA’s all-time record list for most passing touchdowns in a season.

Wyoming senior wide receiver Jake Edmonds became the school’s all-time career leader in receptions with 110. Wyoming (11-0) plays Valley View (10-1) in a Division IV, Region 16 semifinal at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Monroe.

The other regional semifinal is Clinton-Massie (10-1) against Alter (11-0) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Centerville.

7. CHCA dominates: Top-ranked Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy advanced to Saturday’s Division V, Region 20 semifinal with a 42-0 win over No. 8 seed Blanchester Saturday night. It was the Eagles’ third shutout this season.

Senior running back Kesean Gamble rushed for 104 yards on just 11 carries and scored four touchdowns for the Eagles. Gamble broke the single-season rushing mark for CHCA. Gamble has 1,473 rushing yards this season.

CHCA (11-0) advances to play Milton-Union (8-3) Nov. 12 at Miamisburg.

8. All-district: The annual Associated Press Southwest District football meeting is Monday morning in Mason. Media members from across Southwest Ohio attend the meeting for the all-stars in seven divisions. The all-district teams will be announced Nov. 16. The all-state teams will be announced from Nov. 28-Dec. 1 in order of divisions. Mr. Football will be announced Dec. 1 prior to the state finals.

9. Extra points: Fairfield hosted its first home playoff game Friday night since the 1999 season, according to athletic director Mark Harden. ….St. X coach Steve Specht on Fairfield senior running back James Mitchell, who rushed for 86 yards and had a 74-punt return for a touchdown Friday night: “I think he’s a really talented player. ...I hope he’s not getting overlooked by colleges because I think he’s a hell of a player.” …Anderson junior quarterback Jay Volpenhein visited Kentucky Saturday night. He threw for 3,137 yards and 38 touchdowns this season. ...Kentucky offered Lakota West 2019 Steven Faucheux (6-4, 248 pounds) Saturday night. He also has an offer from Tulane.

Statewide schedule for 56 games of the regional semifinals in seven divisions:

Division I – Games at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11

Home Team Listed First

Region 1

1 Solon (10-1) vs. 4 Cleveland St. Ignatius (10-1) at Mentor Jerome T. Osborne Stadium

2 Lakewood St. Edward (8-2) vs. 3 Stow-Munroe Falls (10-1) at Twinsburg Tiger Stadium

Region 2

1 Powell Olentangy Liberty (11-0) vs. 5 Medina (9-2) at Mansfield Arlin Field

2 Dublin Jerome (10-1) vs. 3 Lorain (9-2) at Mansfield Madison Ram Field at StarTek Stadium

Region 3

1 Huber Heights Wayne (10-0-1) vs. 4 Dublin Coffman (9-2) at London Bowlus Field

7 Pickerington North (8-3) vs. 3 Pickerington Central (10-1) at Gahanna-Lincoln Wilbur C. Strait Field

Region 4

1 Colerain (11-0) vs. 5 St. Xavier (6-5) at Hamilton Virgil M. Schwarm Stadium

7 Sycamore (7-4) vs. 3 Mason (7-4) at Middletown Cris Carter Field at Barnitz Stadium

Division II – Games at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11

Home Team Listed First

Region 5

1 Aurora (10-1) vs. 4 Hudson (9-2) at Macedonia Nordonia Boliantz Stadium

2 Chardon (11-0) vs. 3 Warren G. Harding (10-1) at Ravenna Stadium, Gilchrest Field

Region 6

8 Avon Lake (8-3) vs. 4 Whitehouse Anthony Wayne (8-3) at Sandusky Strobel Field at Cedar Point Stadium

7 Westlake (8-3) vs. 6 Olmsted Falls (8-3) at Strongsville Pat Catan Stadium

Region 7

1 Massillon Perry (9-2) vs. 4 Columbus Franklin Heights (10-1) at Mount Vernon Yellow Jacket Stadium-Energy Field

7 Dublin Scioto (8-3) vs. 3 New Albany (8-3) at Columbus St. Francis DeSales Alumni Stadium

Region 8

1 Troy (10-1) vs. 4 Miamisburg (9-2) at Northmont Good Samaritan Stadium, Matt Dudon Memorial Field

2 Turpin (11-0) vs. 3 La Salle (9-2) at West Chester Lakota West Firebird Field

Division III – Games at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12

Home Team Listed First

Region 9

8 Akron East (8-3) vs. 5 New Philadelphia (9-2) at Canal Fulton Northwest Jim Schalmo Field at Dr. Martin Smilek Stadium

2 Akron Archbishop Hoban (10-1) vs. Akron St. Vincent St. Mary (7-4) at University of Akron InfoCision Stadium - Summa Field

Region 10

1 Toledo Central Catholic (11-0) vs. 5 Hunting Valley University School (8-3) at Kalahari Field at Huron Memorial Stadium

2 Sandusky (10-1) vs. 6 Lexington (8-3) at Bellevue First National Bank Field at Bellevue Athletic Facility

Region 11

1 Columbus St. Francis DeSales (11-0) vs. 5 Columbus Beechcroft (10-1) at Westerville Central Warhawk Field

2 Columbus Bexley (11-0) vs. 3 Columbus Hamilton Township (9-2) at Bloom-Carroll Carl Fell Stadium

Region 12

1 Franklin (11-0) vs. 4 St. Marys Memorial (10-1) at Huber Heights Good Samaritan Athletic Field at Heidkamp Stadium

7 Trotwood-Madison (9-2) vs. 3 New Richmond (10-1) at Mason Dwire Field at Atrium Stadium

Division IV – Games at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11

Home Team Listed First

Region 13

1 Perry (11-0) vs. 4 Peninsula Woodridge (11-0) at West Geauga Howell Field

7 Chardon Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin (8-3) vs. 3 Youngstown Cardinal Mooney (8-2) at Niles McKinley Bo Rein Stadium

Region 14

1 Port Clinton (10-1) vs. 5 Columbus Bishop Hartley (8-2) at Tiffin Columbian Frost-Kalnow Stadium

2 Ottawa-Glandorf (10-1) vs. 3 Lewistown Indian Lake (11-0) at Wapakoneta Harmon Field

Region 15

8 Duncan Falls Philo (9-2) vs. 4 Shelby (10-1) at Westerville North Warrior Field at McCann Stadium

2 Steubenville (10-1) vs. 3 Johnstown-Monroe (10-1) at Dover Crater Stadium

Region 16

1 Wyoming (11-0) vs. 5 Germantown Valley View (10-1) at Monroe Hornet Stadium

2 Clinton-Massie (10-1) vs. 3 Kettering Archbishop Alter (11-0) at Centerville Stadium

Division V – Games at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12

Home Team Listed First

Region 17

8 Garrettsville Garfield (8-3) vs. 4 Leavittsburg LaBrae (8-3) at Niles McKinley Bo Rein Stadium

7 Sullivan Black River (8-3) vs. 3 Canton Central Catholic (7-3) at Orrville Red Rider Stadium

Region 18

1 Creston Norwayne (10-1) vs. 5 Swanton (10-1) at Clyde Robert J. Bishop Stadium

2 Pemberville Eastwood (10-1) vs. 3 Milan Edison (10-1) at Fremont Ross Don Paul Stadium at Harmon Fie

Region 19

1 Wheelersburg (11-0) vs. 4 Nelsonville-York (9-2) at Jackson Holzer Field at Alumni Stadium

2 Sugarcreek Garaway (11-0) vs. 3 Coshocton (9-1) at Wooster Triway Doug Miller Field/Titans Stadium

Region 20

1 Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy (11-0) vs. 4 West Milton Milton-Union (8-3) at Miamisburg Harmon Field

2 Coldwater (10-1) vs. 6 Jamestown Greeneview (9-2) at Sidney Memorial Stadium

Division VI – Games at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 11

Home Team Listed First

Region 21

1 Cuyahoga Heights (11-0) vs. 4 Louisville St. Thomas Aquinas (9-2) at Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary John Cistone Field

2 New Middletown Springfield (9-2) vs. 3 Kirtland (10-1) at Austintown-Fitch Greenwood Chevrolet Falcon Stadium

Region 22

1 Hamler Patrick Henry (11-0) vs. 4 Liberty Center (9-2) at Napoleon Charles Buckenmeyer Stadium

2 Bucyrus Wynford (11-0) vs. 3 Defiance Ayersville (11-0) at Findlay Donnell Stadium

Region 23

8 Columbus Bishop Ready (8-3) vs. 5 Newark Catholic (7-4) at Sheridan Paul Culver Jr. Stadium

2 Beverly Fort Frye (11-0) vs. 6 Barnesville (9-1) at Marietta Don Drumm Stadium

Region 24

1 Maria Stein Marion Local (10-1) vs. 5 St. Henry (8-3) at Sidney Memorial Stadium

2 Delphos Jefferson (10-1) vs. 3 Mechanicsburg (11-0) at Bellefontaine AcuSport Stadium

Division VII – Games at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12

Home Team Listed First

Region 25

1 Norwalk St. Paul (11-0) vs. 4 Monroeville (10-1) at Sandusky Perkins Firelands Regional Medical Center Stadium

2 Mogadore (9-2) vs. 3 Warren John F. Kennedy (10-1) at Salem Reilly Stadium

Region 26

1 McComb (10-1) vs. 4 Hicksville (8-3) at Defiance High School Fred Brown Stadium

2 Arlington (8-3) vs. 6 Convoy Crestview (8-3) at Lima Spartan Stadium

Region 27

1 Waterford (10-1) vs. 4 Glouster Trimble (9-2) at Philo Sam Hatfield Stadium

7 Canal Winchester Harvest Prep (8-3) vs. 6 Danville (8-3) at Newark White Field

Region 28

1 Covington (11-0) vs. 5 Fort Recovery (7-4) at Piqua Alexander Stadium, Purk Field


7 McGuffey Upper Scioto Valley (8-3) vs. 3 Minster (7-4) at Wapakoneta Harmon Field