Pic as always from Rod Dilyard. Derek Graber and Matt Davis chase down West Holmes QB Gabe Snyder. Check out his full gallery, available for viewing and purchase here.
Who else was nervous after that 6-6 first half? Did images of the 2008 loss (19-17) to the Knights creep into anyone else's head? Whatever was said at halftime worked. Or maybe it's what wasn't said....I'm hearing that Coach Davault left it up to the kids to motivate themselves.
Tre & Mason
Good game for the rushing duo or Tre Simpson and Mason Monheim. Tre had 173 rushing yards on just 15 carries and Mason also cracked the 100 yard plateau, on just 6 carries. Combined, Mason and Tre racked up 276 rushing yards on 21 carries. Talk about lifting the yards per carry average. Simpson came into the game with an OCC high 116 carries (averaging just 4.6 per carry) and Mason was only averaging 3 yards per carry. Mason had 113 yards on the season and ran for 103 Friday night, nearly doubling his season totals.
Both also had their season long totes in the game, both going for touchdowns...Tre scoring on a highlight reel worthy 82-yarder and Mason capped the scoring with a 59 yard scamper.
First Half Woes
A comment on my Facebook page jokingly mentioned that the kids need a reminder that the game this week (and the rest of the way) start at 7pm and not once the first 2 quarters are have been played. It's funny, but lately, very true. We're not playing too well in the 1st half of games. We led Northwest and Triway at halftime, but since then we've either been tied (Copley, Lexington, West Holmes) or trailing (Mansfield Senior) at halftime.
In the last 4 games, we've only scored 27 first half points, or an average of just under 7 points per game.
Again, there seemed to be WAY too much yellow laundry on the field. The Riders were penalized 11 times (9 in the first half) on the night. If the OCC website is the gospel, that makes 49 penalties on the season for nearly 400 yards, easily the most penalized team in the conference. That's an average of 8 penalties per game. Unacceptable.
I overheard a reporter from the Mansfield area mention that in his 10 years of covering the Mansfield Senior Tygers, that it's the first time he could recall where a Tyger opponent (Orrville) had more penalty yards than they did.
That's telling when Mansfield Senior is more disciplined than an Orrville team.
It has to be fixed or these next four weeks are not going to be fun.
2. Nick Graber - I mentioned last week that he played well against Senior, his INT early in the 3rd may have been the spark that energized this team. Good to have another reliable DB this week for Ashland.
3. Everyone....no turnovers returned for a TD. First time in 3 weeks. Hooray!
Clear Fork and Ashland are the other two teams still unbeaten in conference play and each team controls their own destiny in terms of a conference title. Orrville gets Ashland this week, Clear Fork gets the Arrows in week 8 (at the Colt Corral) and then travels to Orrville in week 9. Should be a very exciting last 4 weeks.
Also....did anyone else catch Clear Fork's Jordan McCune's comments in the Saturday paper? And I quote..
"Orrville looks to be down a little, but we say that every year and they never are."Good thing he added that "but."
"We haven't been able to beat them and it's almost like a curse, but I think we actually can this year."It's not a curse...you've just never beaten us. At your place, at our place...in the regular season or in the playoffs.
"Ashland, I think we're even with them, but the big difference is that game's at home for us this year."I guess it means nothing that the Orrville game is at our place this year?
All jabbing aside....they have a very powerful run game...but they've had that year in and year out seemingly, and they still can't beat us. Until I see it happen, I can't give them the edge. Put up all the huge rushing nights against Mansfield Senior and Wooster that you want....but Orrville's D is a little different. Talk smack AFTER you beat us. Not before.
Coach Beans says his team has the ability to throw the ball, but here they are running the ball 40-50 times a game. Imagine if they could throw or run the ball with equal efficiency? Then they'd have something.
The region page is updated with the latest news, standing and my own projections.
3-0 in OCC? 4-0?
The Riders last started 3-0 in conference play was in 2006. We lost to Ashland that year (26-18). I could honestly see this game (and this year) playing out a lot like that '06 team. Only real difference from the '06 team is the offense. That '06 team's strength was passing, this year it seems to be on the ground. Both teams had solid defenses, but this years D is really impressive.
We've only started 4-0 one time and that was in 2003 when we ran the table until losing 21-20 to Wooster.
It's always a good weekend when the Red Riders, Buckeyes and Browns win on the same weekend. When do you think it happened last? I would have thought sometime in the 2009 season it would have happened, but it's actually been a little over two years. It was the weekend of Sept. 26-28, 2008. Orrville beat Mansfield Senior on the 26th, Ohio State beat Minnesota on the 27th and the Browns beat the Bengals on the 28th.
Be sure to pick up an OrrViews this weekend. Lots of good reading and a special feature on Orrville's beloved mascot Rowdy...and his predecessors.
On to Ashland. More on that coming later in the week.