Centerburg at Northmor, 7 p.m.
Centerburg (2-1) and Northridge played an almost even game on Friday, but Ellis Grizenko’s extra-point kick gave the Trojans’ a one-point win, 7-6. Donnell Marshall’s 14-yard, second-quarter run provided the Trojans’ only TD, and the defense stopped the Vikings’ Cole Fox on a 2-yard conversion attempt after his fourth-quarter score. The Trojans rushing trio of Marshall, Trey Kendrick and John Sheasby combined for 164 yards, and Centerburg’s defense was excellent, allowing just 174 total yards (145 yards rushing, 29 passing) and intercepting a pass. This week, Northmor brings its potent offense into the game, which will test Centerburg’s D to the limit.
Northmor (3-0) did not flash its customary offense against five-time playoff team Lucas last Friday, and a missed extra-point was the difference in the Golden Knights’ 14-13 victory. QB Hunter Mariotti and TE Blake Miller hooked up for Northmor’s only two scores, an 8-yarder in the first quarter and a 34-yarder in the second, Miller’s only touches of the game. Wyatt Reeder contributed 95 yards rushing and 64 yards on two catches, and Gavin Ramos caught three passes for 54 yards. The Knights were hit hard by the Cubs’ runners (50-262), but their offensive talent, especially at receiver, will be a challenge for Centerburg to overcome this week.
Danville at Mount Gilead, 7 p.m.
Danville (0-3) held close to Worthington Christian in Week 3, but the Warriors amassed 430 yards of offense in winning, 33-26. WC QB Lucas Hartings shredded the Blue Devil defense with 329 yards and two TDs on 22-of-38 passing, although Danville held the team’s runners to less than four yards per carry (26-101). Danville was also hurt by 115 penalty yards. Blue Devils’ QB Charlie Cook went 13 of 32 for 147 yards, and the team’s RBs ran for 103 yards, led by Alex Holt (18-69). The offensive line was hurt by graduation, and it will have to provide a better push for the runners and give Cook better protection. The game should be closer than last season’s 48-0 Danville win.
Mount Gilead (1-2) snapped a 24-game losing streak on Friday, earning a 41-40 victory at Elgin. The host Comets scored late to get within one, and failed to convert a 2-point conversion for the win. The 41 points were the Indians’ highest total of the season, after a 31-0 loss to Colonel Crawford in Week 1 and a 41-21 loss against Upper Sandusky in Week 2. Nathan Rogers returns as the Mount Gilead QB, and he is protected by a group of 200-plus pound linemen, including center Mathew Exline and tackle Tristan Stewart. The Indians also have that kind of size on the defensive line, and if it can control the Danville running game, they have a chance.
Fredericktown at Cardington, 7 p.m.
Fredericktown (1-2) scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter in Friday’s game at Utica to win its first game of the season, 42-20. The Redskins scored two touchdowns after a long lightning delay to get to within two, 22-20, but two TDs by Mason Finnell and one by Corey Webb allowed the Freddies to pull away. Fredericktown had its best offense of the season, rushing 52 times for 314 yards, and QB Terry Fearn completed only 5 of 12 passes for 179 yards and two scores, but also threw two interceptions. The defense limited Utica to 47 yards rushing and 127 passing, and should be able to repeat its success against Cardington this week.
Cardington (0-3), like most area teams in Week 3, had a long weather delay (2:40), playing nearly to midnight in falling to Colonel Crawford 46-14. The Pirates gave up touchdowns on the Eagles’ first four possessions of the game, and over 500 yards in total (142 pass, 364 rush). Cardington QBs made some big running plays, including Nate Hickman’s 25-yard first-down scramble and Kaden Beach’s 30-yard run. Hickman also hit Trey Brininger for a 32-yard TD, but also threw a pair of interceptions. The Pirates will face a Fredericktown team that found some offense last week, and its defense will have to tighten up considerably to have a shot at a win.
Licking Valley at Utica, 7 p.m.
Licking Valley (3-0) did not give up a point until the fourth quarter to five-time defending playoff team Johnstown on Friday to grab a 42-22 victory. QB Logan Bragg completed eight passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns, and Mitchell Ford ran 22 times for 149 yards and a pair of scores. The Vikings led 7-0 after the first quarter, and a 28-point second quarter left a running game for much of the second half. The defense had four sacks but was vulnerable to the run, allowing Wes Myers 140 yards and two TDs on 26 carries, but the Johnnies had only 43 yards through the air. The offensive firepower that the Vikings possess should bode it well against Utica this week.
Utica (0-3) had its deficit down to two points, 22-20, against Fredericktown last Friday, but gave up three late scores to fall, 42-20, and stay winless. Redskin rushers had little success, gaining 47 yards on 27 carries, but QB Collin McCullough was 12 of 24 for 124 yards and a score. Utica was also hampered by two fumble losses and one interception. Ethan Adams proved to be a threat on the outside, hauling in eight catches for 108 yards, but McCullough was the leading rusher with 15 yards. The Redskins gave up 42 points against an offense that had seven points through the first two weeks of the season, a far cry from Licking Valley’s 31 points per game.