Revenge On Minds Of Commits, Foes

If familiarity actually does breed contempt, emotions could be running even higher this weekend when several Ohio State football verbal commits continue their postseason runs. Led by a highly-anticipated Cleveland St. Ignatius-Cleveland Glenville matchup, this weekend is lined with rematches.

DE Darryl Baldwin, Solon, Ohio – The Comets will face a Mayfield team looking to avenge its lone in the second round of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division I playoffs Saturday night at Parma Byers Field.

Solon (11-0) defeated the Wildcats (10-1) 27-20 on Oct. 2 in a battle of then-unbeatens. The Comets raced out to a 13-0 halftime lead before holding off rallying Mayfield in the second half. Now the two teams will face again in Region 1 postseason play.

The second-seeded Comets may be in trouble if Baldwin is unable to play. Solon defeated No. 7 Euclid last weekend in the opening round of the playoffs, but Baldwin spent most of the game on the sidelines. The defensive end/tight end left the game with an ankle injury and was seen on crutches after halftime. There has been no word on whether Baldwin will be available this weekend.

Mayfield thumped Parma in its playoff opener. The Wildcats routed the Redmen 38-7 and sounded eager to face the Comets again.

"As soon as we lost that game, we all realized that we would play them again," senior running back Tim Wetzel told the (Cleveland) Plain Dealer. "We knew that wouldn't be our last game against Solon."

RB/WR/CB Corey Brown, Springfield (Pa.) Cardinal O'Hara – Brown and the Lions begin the Philadelphia Catholic League Class AAAA playoffs with a rematch Saturday against defending champion Wyndmoor La Salle.

O'Hara (8-2) should be very familiar with the Explorers (8-1). La Salle defeated the Lions 24-14 last weekend. Brown scored two touchdowns in a losing effort, reaching the end zone on runs of 73 and 15 yards. However, La Salle built a 21-0 lead after the first quarter that provided all the cushion it would need.

"We came out and we played the worst first quarter all season," Brown told the Delaware County Daily Times following the loss. "We came out in the second half and played good, so (the Explorers) can expect that next weekend."

The Lions finished with more total yards and one extra first down, but O'Hara could not overcome La Salle quarterback Drew Loughery. The senior completed 13 of 21 passes for 177 and three touchdowns.

"We're going to use our momentum from this game," Brown said after the loss to La Salle, "and come at them with the same momentum next week."

LB David Durham, Charlotte (N.C.) Christian – After enjoying a bye in the first round of the North Carolina Independent Schools Athletic Association Division 3A playoffs, the Knights begin postseason play Friday with a battle against visiting No 4 seed Raleigh Ravenscroft.

The Knights (8-2) are the top seed and have already defeated the Ravens once this season. Charlotte Christian earned a 21-14 victory thanks to a 2-yard fourth-quarter touchdown run by Durham, who plays fullback on offense. The game saw the Knights race out to a 14-0 first-half lead before Ravenscroft tied the game. Charlotte Christian also played that game without flu-riddled quarterback John Kincaid.

Ravenscroft (9-4) defeated No. 3 Charlotte Providence Day in the first round of the NCISAA playoffs last week. The Ravens won that game 14-7.

QB Taylor Graham, Wheaton (Ill.) North – The Falcons have impressed with a pair of upsets in the Illinois High School Association Class 7A playoffs, but if their run is to continue to the state semifinals, they will have to avenge an early-season loss to Lake Zurich.

Wheaton North (7-4), seeded 15th in the Class 7A bracket, has advanced with wins at No. 2 Rockford Boylan (17-13) and No. 10 Prospect Mt. Prospect (38-24). Meanwhile, No. 11 Lake Zurich (8-3) has defeated No. 6 Rolling Meadow (16-6) and No. 3 Crystal Lake South (30-28).

The Bears handed Wheaton North its first loss of the season Sept. 9 – a 35-9 rout in which Graham completed 11 of 29 passes for 122 yards. The Falcons scored first, and only trailed 14-9 at halftime before Lake Zurich took command in the second half.

The Bears started the season 2-3 before turning its season around with six straight victories.

Wheaton North will host the game Saturday night.

DE Steve Miller (junior), Canton (Ohio) McKinley – A week after dispatching top-seeded Toledo Whitmer and OSU commit Ken Hayes, the Bulldogs will return to Northeast Ohio Saturday afternoon for a tilt against No. 4 Canton GlenOak at Massillon Paul Brown Stadium in an OHSAA Division I, Region 2 game.

The schools, separated by less than 10 miles – both routed first-round opponents. Eighth-seeded McKinley (9-2) beat Whitmer 34-13 in the Glass City, while GlenOak (9-2) dispatched No. 5 Wadsworth. That set up the fourth meeting between the two Canton schools within the last 14 months. McKinley leads the all-time series 27-8, but GlenOak has won the last two – including a 14-0 victory earlier this season.

"It's going to be a very physical game, a very emotional game," McKinley head coach Ron Johnson told the Canton Repository. "It's all on the line right now, everything. It's one chance to win and move on. It's going to be no holds barred, and we'll see who comes out at about 4 o'clock Saturday afternoon."

Miller and the Bulldogs' defense will have their hands full running back Brionte Dunn, who ran for 182 yards in GlenOak's win over McKinley in the sixth week of the season.

WR James Louis, Delray Beach (Fla.) Atlantic – The Eagles will have only pride to play for Friday when they host Palm Beach Lakes. Atlantic failed to win a three-way tiebreaker Monday night at Park Vista and will miss the postseason.

Atlantic, Park Vista and Seminole Ridge each finished District 8-6A play with 2-2 records, and only one of the three could join district champ Boca Raton in the playoffs. That one ended up being Seminole Ridge. The three teams were seeded, with Park Vista ranking No. 1, followed by Seminole Ridge and Atlantic. The Eagles then faced Seminole Ridge in a 12-minute quarter, with the winner facing Park Vista in a 12-minute quarter to determine the district runner up. Seminole Ridge defeated Atlantic 6-0 in the first quarter and then knocked off Park Vista 9-0 in the deciding matchup.

The game against Lakes (6-3) will end a disappointing season for the Eagles (5-4), who were the preseason favorite to win the district.

LB Scott McVey, Cleveland St. Ignatius – In arguably the best matchup in the Buckeye state this weekend, No. 1 Cleveland St. Ignatius will face fifth-seeded Cleveland Glenville Saturday night in a battle of state powers in Division I, Region 1 play at Lakewood Stadium.

Continuing the theme of rematches this weekend, the Wildcats will look to prevent the Tarblooders from avenging a Week 1 loss. In that matchup, the defending state champions edged Glenville 14-13. The Tarblooders held a 13-7 lead in the fourth quarter, but a shanked punt set up St. Ignatius for a game-winning touchdown drive. Quarterback Mark Myers tied the game with a fourth-down touchdown pass to Kory Gillissie, and Jesse Franklin's extra point provided the game-winning point.

McVey caught a 1-yard touchdown pass in the victory, but was sidelined at the end of the game with a shoulder injury.

The Wildcats defeated Youngstown Boardman – and OSU commit J.T. Moore – in the regional quarterfinals. Glenville defeated host North Royalton 41-16.

OT Andrew Norwell, Cincinnati Anderson – The Redskins are still dealing with life without Norwell, who is out for the season with a broken left tibia, but that life is still good for the top seed in the OHSAA Division I, Region 4 playoffs. Undefeated Anderson hopes to continue its season this weekend against upstart Middletown.

Anderson is having its best season as a D-I school after winning the state title in 2007 and finishing as runner-up last season as a Division II school. The Redskins made the D-I playoffs seven times from 1992 to 2003 but never made it to the state semifinals.

This appears to be their best chance at success in the big-school division. Behind the talented backfield duo of quarterback Brandon Bornhauser (1,219 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns with 828 yards passing) and running back Kyle Slater (1,161 yards and 21 TDs), the Redskins have scored 40 points or more eight times in 11 games.

Anderson (11-0) outlasted OSU recruiting target Jordan Hicks and West Chester Lakota West in the first round of the playoffs. Tommy Chapman's 43-yard field goal with 2:39 left in the fourth quarter proved to be the deciding play in a 24-21 victory for the Redskins. Slater rushed 33 times for 327 yards.

The No. 7 Middies are Anderson's next foe. They provided one of the biggest surprises in the first round of the state playoffs last weekend when they blasted state power Cincinnati Moeller to the tune of a 44-14 rout.

"They're the fastest team we've faced," Anderson head coach Jeff Giesting told the Cincinnati Enquirer.

The game will be held Saturday afternoon at the University of Cincinnati's Nippert Stadium at 2:30 p.m.

LB/TE Jamel Turner, Fork Union (Va.) Military Academy – The Blue Devils begin their postseason with a game at top-seeded Richmond Collegiate in a Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division I semifinal.

The Cougars (8-1) already defeated Fork Union once this season, earning a 38-34 road victory on Oct. 23. Even though they lost, the Blue Devils (7-3) should be buoyed by their performance in that game. Fork Union led 20-3 after the first quarter and 20-17 at halftime before losing the lead in the second half.

Turner finished with four solo tackles and a sack a losing effort.

The following OSU verbal commits have finished their seasons: K Drew Basil, Chillicothe, Ohio; S/RB Chad Hagan, Canonsburg (Pa.) Canon-McMillan; DE Ken Hayes (junior), Toledo Whitmer; DE J.T. Moore, Youngstown (Ohio) Boardman; RB/FS Roderick Smith, Fort Wayne (Ind.) Paul Harding; WR Tyrone Williams, East Cleveland (Ohio) Shaw.

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