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Thursday, May 7, 2009

Breaking: 2009-10 Region Assignment

The little birdies are in overdrive today. Word is coming out of the OHSAA offices that our Riders have been placed in a region for the upcoming football season.

We've heard rumblings about the powerhouse Region 13 being turned on it's top, with teams like Steubenville likely moving back to Div. 3, and maybe taking Cardinal Mooney with them. Things were looking up for us, but what I didn't figure in was the possibility of a region change, and that appears to be what has happened.

Pending approval by the state, we're moving to Region 14 (still Div. 4) for at least the next 2 football seasons. The last time we were housed in region 14 was from 1994-1997. Two of those 4 years (1994 & 95) saw us win regional championships.

Here's the list of teams that will make up the region, their county, combined record over the past 2 seasons, and other pertinent notes.

Some points of emphasis....
1. Three other county teams will join us in Reigon 14. Chippewa, Norwayne and Triway. With Norwayne jumping up from Div. 5.

2. Several playoff qualifiers from 2008 no longer call region 14 home. Led by state power Coldwater and joined by Marion Pleasant & Sparta Highland.

3. We have brief history with several team in the region. We lost to Black River & Elyria Catholic in the playoffs, defeated defending state champ Wauseon in the 1994 playoffs, defeated Huron in the 1998 state semifinals, defeated Van Wert in the first ever home playoff game at Red Rider Stadium in 1985, and defeated Fostoria in our first ever playoff game in 1980.

4. OCC foe Clear Fork remains in the region, but sets up a potential playoff game with a conference team. Something that's never happened in our history.

5. Rossford and Van Wert both drop to Div 4. from Div. 3.

6. For the record, Orrville would have finished 5th in region 14 last year, all things being equal. We finished 10th and out of the playoffs in region 13 last year. That's no knock, only an acknowledgement of how strong Region 13 was.

This should be seen as a very good thing for us. This regions has it's powerhouses, but I think we right in that top tier with Fostoria, Genoa, Pemberville and Ottowa-Glandorf.

Our aspirations should be very high heading into 2009. The only downside to this is it takes potential playoff sites like Fawcett Stadium, Paul Brown and U of Akron's new field out of the equation. If we make it to week 11 or 12, we'll be heading west to places like Ashland and Mansfield, or maybe further west. Who cares, right? As long as we're in.

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