DEGRAFF — The Northwest Central Conference title will be decided Friday at Riverside. Lehman Catholic will travel to DeGraff and try to claim the NWCC title outright, while the Pirates will try to earn a share of the title.
The Cavaliers (8-1) have rolled over every NWCC opponent, including a 49-13 win over Lima Perry last Friday which guaranteed the team at least a share of the conference title. Riverside (6-3) has beaten every NWCC opponent in lopsided fashion, save for a 29-20 loss to Perry in Week 8.
Lehman junior quarterback Elliott Gilardi leads the NWCC with 1,320 passing yards and is fourth in rushing yards with 760.
Lehman running back Owen Smith leads the league with 1,419 rushing yards and 19 total touchdowns. Gilardi has scored 15 total touchdowns. Lehman receiver Kameron Lee leads the NWCC with 470 receiving yards.
Senior defensive lineman Michael Bunker leads the NWCC with sacks. He’s also caught 10 passes this year, three of which are touchdowns.
The Cavaliers will likely be without one of their best offensive weapons for the rest of the season. Running back and receiver Brandon Barhorst suffered a season-ending knee injury while catching a touchdown pass against Perry. Barhorst had 393 receiving yards and 226 rushing yards with 10 total touchdowns.
Riverside’s Gaven Anderson and Luke Roby rank second and third, respectively, in the NWCC in rushing yards. Anderson, a senior, has rushed for 1,250 yards and has 14 total touchdowns, while Roby has 823 rushing yards. Linebacker Nick Hall leads Riverside with 87 tackles and has four sacks to his credit, while defensive end Gavin Stallard has five sacks.
Both teams already have playoff berths secured. Lehman will host a first-round game regardless of Friday’s outcome according to Drew Pasteur’s Fantastic50.net, while Riverside’s chances of a first-round game hinge on beating Lehman.
Contributing columnist Dave Ross reports he was informed by Lehman coach Dick Roll that the Cavaliers will play their first-round home game at Piqua’s Alexander Stadium next Friday.
Fort Loramie at Tri-County North
Fort Loramie posted its third shutout in the last four weeks last Friday against a Cross County Conference team in a 51-0 win over National Trail.
The Redskins (7-2, 6-1 CCC) have won in blowout fashion against their last four CCC opponents. Loramie, which already has a playoff berth secured, looks to roll again this week. Tri-County North has lost its last three games by at least three touchdowns, including a 42-0 loss at Miami East last Friday.
Loramie senior running back Mike Hoying leads all CCC players with 967 rushing yards and has scored a conference-high 23 total touchdowns. Carter Mescher is fourth in the CCC with 693 rushing yards and 10 total touchdowns. Senior quarterback Austin Siegel has thrown for 660 yards.
Fort Loramie linebacker Nolan Holthaus and linebacker C.J. Billing both are in the top 5 in the CCC with three sacks each.
The Redskins can likely clinch a home playoff game with a win on Friday.
New Bremen at Versailles
The Tigers (3-6, 2-5 Midwest Athletic Conference) and New Bremen (3-6, 2-6) will wrap-up regular season play on Friday. Both have been officially eliminated from the playoffs.
Versailles scored two late touchdowns against Minster last week but couldn’t complete a comeback in a 26-21 loss. New Bremen was within one touchdown of Fort Recovery in the second quarter last Friday, but the Indians scored the last 24 points to run away to a 38-7 win.
Contact Bryant Billing at (937) 538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter.
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