It’s almost a dream scenario for the county with the Northern 10, Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference and Northwest Central Conference playing to start this week and five of our six teams getting to open at home, with an intra-county clash the only thing barring the sixth to do the same.
The area went 3-3 last week and will look to improve on that this week and start to play strong in the conference.
Let’s tackle the Week 4 game list.
Colonel Crawford (3-0) at Bucyrus (1-2)
7:00 p.m. at Redman Field
What better way to open the N10 game than with a clash of county enemies? This one is doubly special because it’s the first time Colonel Crawford coach Jake Bruner has returned to face his former team, Bucyrus, since he took over the Eagles program, though he saw a lot of Bucyrus over the years in Ryan Teglovic’s staff.
Colonel Crawford has been the team to beat in the county for the past two seasons, and this year is shaping up to be the same as the Eagles have outscored opponents 133-32 while earning two wins on the road and one at home. They’re averaging a league-best 362 yards of offense and 44.3 points, as well as an absurd 9.0 yards per play. Tanner Dyer, Matt Clinard and Micah Thomas (10 rushing touchdowns) have established the running game every week so far and that helps dynamic athlete Trevor Vogt (five receptions, 182 yards, three touchdowns) make wide plays. But Vogt can do it all with two kick-return touchdowns and a rushing touchdown under his belt.
Simultaneously, the defense is allowing just 10.7 points and 171 yards per game, led by Parker Ketterman and Gabe Thew (59 tackles, 12 for loss, four combined sacks) up front. All of which could mean a long night for Bucyrus.
The hosts come in after losing back-to-back road games to Danville and Northmor by a 69-7 margin. Bucyrus is averaging 272 offensive yards, 196.3 of them passing, and 18.3 points, but those numbers are mostly skewed thanks to a strong showing in Week 1. Danville controlled the line of scrimmage all night in Week 1. 2 and Northmor used the team downstairs in Week 3, two things the Eagles can do very well.
For Bucyrus to keep this close, Malachi Bayless will have to air it out and try to beat Colonel Crawford with the passing game. He has several options to choose from in Randy Banks, Joe Rager, Kam Lewis and Mason Gebhardt and Blayne Barto (46 of his 50 completions are to this group). As long as Bayless has time to make plays, they will certainly happen.
Mohawk (0-3) at Buckeye Central (3-0)
7 p.m. at Buckeye Field
This is uncharted territory for both shows in recent years. Buckeye Central is a perfect 3-0 through non-league play, while Mohawk is winless entering the conference schedule. The Warriors have struggled on offense with just 31 points this season and 647 yards through three games, while the defense has also been porous allowing 6.8 yards per carry to opposing running backs and 9.7 yards per attempt through the air.
The Bucks’ offense isn’t afraid to mix it up depending on what the defense gives them. Manny Mullins’ 382 rushing yards and four touchdowns are second-best in the league, while Tyler Sanderson’s 10 receptions, 197 yards and three touchdowns rank fourth in yards per game (65.7). Derex Dean’s 66.7% completion rate and nine touchdowns are the best in the league, and his 470 passing yards rank third.
It’s a game Buckeye Central will no doubt consider winnable and a 4-0 start would be something special for a program that hasn’t had a winning season since finishing as state runner-up in 2011.
Harding (0-3) at Gallion (1-2)
7:00 p.m. at Unckrich Stadium
This should be a track and field battle at Heise Park. Harding is full of guys with talented skills and Galion has no shortage. The Prexies come winless after suffering two 28-21 losses and a 49-7 crushing loss to a downhill Ashland team.
Galion earned his first win of the season, 28-7 over Upper Sandusky, last weekend thanks to a strong performance from Gabe Ivy. It was exactly the result the Tigers needed after enduring back-to-back big losses to two of the best teams in the state in McComb and Carey, and the unexpected death of senior Kooper McCabe.
Your eyes can now switch to league play where a MOAC title becomes the next target. Starting with a win over Harding would be a step in the right direction.
Carey (3-0) at Wynford (0-3)
7 p.m. at Royals Stadium
This is not a place Wynford has been for a long time, 45 years to be exact. Winless in the first three games is not how this season was supposed to go, but it was always going to be a growth season under new coach Cyle Skidmore. Although the results are not shown, there has been growth, and that was evident against Lucas in Week 3 when the Royals moved the ball and were a couple of drops away from reaching the final few possessions, and the players never came out even with the game out of reach.
And defending Division VI state champion Carey has started off as strong as she can through the first three weeks, throttling D-VII state runner-up Hopewell-Loudon (now in D-VI) in the opener, shutting out Galion in week 2. and beating D-II Toledo Waite in Week 3. The Blue Devils are averaging 295.3 rushing yards and, even more impressive, have allowed just 12 rushing yards all season. Yeah, just 12 yards for three weeks.
This is a game where Wynford will have to limit mistakes and, like Bucyrus, vent it to slow down the game and try to beat Carey deep. Ashton Warren has shown several times against the Cubs that he can throw a good spiral, so he just needs his receivers to open up and make plays.
Ridgemont (1-2) at Crestline (0-3)
7 p.m. at Hutson Stadium
Rounding out the week is Crestline winless at home against Ridgemont with a win. The Bulldogs return home having suffered a 49-0 loss to Cardington in Week 3, while the Golden Gophers were strangled by Buckeye Central at home.
This is a game that Crestline will have marked as one of the winnable ones in the NWCC along with Ridgedale, and as long as the Bulldogs can build on the magic of Week 2, a 14-0 loss to North Baltimore, this could be the one. result. they desperately need. The Bucks aired it out against Ridgemont last week and kept hitting the rock, so it’s a good place for the Bulldogs to start.