Week 8 previews: Stakes get raised in Battle of 72


By Steven Wright - [email protected]



JAMESTOWN — The Battle of 72 may be a notch more intense this season with a potential OHC South and overall league title in play for Cedarville and Greeneview.

The Indians and Rams are both 2-0 in the division heading into Friday’s rivalry game. Cedarville recently announced its status as a contender by defeating the state’s No. 2 ranked squad in Division VII a week ago against Catholic Central. Its the exact same feat Greeneview pulled off earlier this season against Mechanicsburg.

Cedarville’s offensive improvement may be the most pleasant surprise of the season in Greene County. First-year head coach Brian Bogenschutz has implemented a solid passing game with Jackson Pyles ranking near the OHC lead all season. But the running game isn’t forgotten, with a near 50-50 balance in run-pass play selection to make the Indians be one of three counties schools averaging more than 100 yards on the ground and in the air.

The run game for Greeneview under Ryan Haines, the school’s new winningest coach, has again plowed through opponents with the team being at or above the 300-yard plateau in five of its seven games. Defense is equally as strong of a unit during the Rams’ current four-game win streak, with opposing offenses are averaging fewer than 200 total yards as Cooper Payton and his teammates continue their strong play.

Cedarville would also clinch a spot in the postseason for the first time since 2013 with a win. Greeneview may be able to do the same for the third consecutive season with assistance from other area results.

Stebbins at Xenia

Heading into this week with a three game lead with three games to go, Xenia will secure the MVL Valley Division title with a win against the Indians.

The Buccaneers with its win last week guaranteed itself a first round home game in the postseason and could inch closer to also getting home field advantage in a potential second round game by improving to 8-0 and receiving help from other results around the area.

Bellbrook at Oakwood

Bellbrook remains in prime position to make a run at its fourth SWBL title in five seasons as it sits 4-0 in the East Division. Showdowns with the West Division leader and second place in the East loom to close the season, but a trip to Oakwood comes first.

The Lumberjacks have been competitive in SWBL play despite its 2-5 record over the last few weeks. The quarterback -receiver combo of Stephen Lauterbach and Max Parker is one of the top duos in the league. Parker is also one of the best all-around players, ranking in the top-5 in the leagues in tackles and having the most interceptions on defense.

Sidney at Fairborn

Sidney’s rushing defense ranks close to Stebbins in the MVL, which could be good news for Fairborn after Jay Kidd broke through with a nearly 200-yard effort on the ground against the Indians a week ago.

Tucker Herron has taken over the MVL passing lead for Sidney with 1,164 yards in the air this season. Myles Vordemark is averaging 14 tackles per game.

McNicholas at Carroll

Carroll’s defense has struggled to keep opponents the scoreboard recently, allowing no fewer than 37 points in its last four contests. McNicholas comes in having only been held under 21 points once this season.

Week 8 Rankings

1. Xenia

2. Bellbrook

3. Greeneview

4. Cedarville

5. Beavercreek

6. Fairborn

7. Carroll

https://www.xeniagazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/32/2022/10/web1_Football.jpg

By Steven Wright

[email protected]

Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on Twitter @Steven_Wright_.

Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on Twitter @Steven_Wright_.