(0-4) East @ (2-2) Manchester
The East Tartans will face another SOC I road test this week in their battle against the Manchester Greyhounds. The Tartans offense looked much improved from previous weeks in their week four road trip to Franklin Furnace to face the Green Bobcats as they rushed for nearly 200 yards. Ball security and heady plays will be the key for the Matt Miller coached team to get it’s first victory of the season this Friday night.
(2-2) Symmes Valley @ (4-0) Green
The dream start to the 2018 season for Green continues this Friday night against the Symmes Valley Vikings. Green started off last week’s rivalry game with East a bit flat, something that will definitely have to change if they wish to compete for an SOC I title under head coach Ted Newsome. In the first release of the weekly computer rankings for playoff seeding in each division, the Bobcats were ranked 6th in the Division VII Region 27 rankings, something that will surely change in the Bobcats are able to steal another victory this Friday night.
(4-0) Minford @ (1-3) Williamsburg
In that very same computer ranking, the Minford Falcons were ranked the third team in Division V Region 19 this week, thanks to their 4-0 start. The Falcons were among those teams that “received other votes” but did not quite crack the top 10 of this week’s state AP poll. For Minford head coach Jesse Ruby’s team to extend their winning streak to 5-0, setting up a potential battle of undefeated teams in week six against West, they will need to continue their strong offensive showcases led by Kelton Kelley, Ty Wiget, and Elijah Voglesong.
(2-2) Eastern @ (0-4) Northwest
Mohawks head coach Doug Montavon likes to play a tough schedule to get his team prepared for the rest of the season, but this week begins the rest of the season as SOC I play for Northwest finally kicks off. The Mohawks are winless on the season, but there is definitely some potential for wins in the coming weeks, starting with the Eastern Eagles. Montavon’s team will have to establish their run game early and often to ensure their first victory Friday night.
(0-4) Notre Dame @ (3-1) Oak Hill
For a Notre Dame team that has faced injuries early in the season, the goal of Friday’s game against SOC I favorite, the Oak Hill Oaks, is always to win. But that will be a tall task for the Titans in a road trip to face the Oaks. More importantly is to make the game interesting and competitive as long as you can, putting pressure on Oak Hill to make mistakes. The Titans will need to play mistake free football to have a chance this Friday night.
(3-1) Jackson @ (3-1) Wheelersburg
The Wheelersburg Pirates are coming off of their second straight victory of the season against Bishop Watterson. Before Bishop Hartley defeated the Pirates earlier this season, the last team to beat the Pirates in the regular season was the Jackson Ironmen. For Wheelersburg to showcase why they have a chance to repeat for a state title, they need to showcase their offensive prowess early and often between their plethora of offensive weapons. In this week’s computer rankings, the Pirates were ranked fourth in Division V Region 19, and also ranked 6th in the AP poll for all of the Division V teams.
(3-1) Gallia Academy @ (3-1) Portsmouth
Portsmouth needed to win last week’s OVC opener against Rock Hill to position themselves for a chance at a playoff run, and also a chance at the OVC title this season. They were able to do that last week, but will also need to do something similar this week against Gallia Academy. Running back for the Trojans, Talyn Parker, is averaging nearly 230 rushing yards per game, a stat in which he is leading all OVC rushers. For the Trojans to pick up another OVC win Friday night, they will need to rely on Parker and fullback Tyler McCoy to leave their mark in their high powered rushing attack.
(0-3) Fairview @ (1-3) Valley
The Valley Indians will face their second opponent in a row from the bluegrass state of Kentucky, but this week it will be the Eagles of Fairview. Last week, the Indians took a road trip to face Class A powerhouse, the Raceland Rams, losing to the Rams by a score of 60-28. The Indians will hope that quarterback Andrew Shope is able to throw the ball like he did a week ago, and also hope that they are able to get their two-headed rushing attack of Kayden Mollette and Gabe Streeter established this Friday night, something they were not able to do a week ago.
(4-1) Raceland @ (4-0) Portsmouth West **Game of the Week**
Here we are. One of the most anticipated rematches from a year ago is finally here as the Raceland Rams will travel to the buckeye state to face the Portsmouth West Senators. These two schools have showcased their skill sets on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball so far this season. Raceland, who is the 3rd ranked team in the Class A AP poll in Kentucky, was able to score 60 against Valley last Saturday night in their first matchup with a Scioto County school of the year. The Senators two most impressive wins came against one of the contenders for the OVC this year, the Portsmouth Trojans, and also the reigning OVC champs, the Coal Grove Hornets. Both teams will be looking to add to their resumes this Friday night in our game of the week in Scioto County. The Senators were ranked 1st in the first official computer rankings of the 2018 season, and just 4th in the state AP poll for all of Division V.
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1930, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT