Area football preview: Lehman Catholic looks for 3rd straight NWCC win


Anna looks to rebound against Versailles

By Bryant Billing - bbilling@sidneydailynews.com



Lehman Catholic’s R.J. Bertini runs during a Northwest Central Conference game against Riverside on Sept. 20 in De Graff. Bertini has thrown for 952 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions and has rushed for 207 yards and three TDs.

Lehman Catholic’s R.J. Bertini runs during a Northwest Central Conference game against Riverside on Sept. 20 in De Graff. Bertini has thrown for 952 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions and has rushed for 207 yards and three TDs.


Steve Egbert | Sidney Daily News

WEEK 6 AREA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE

Fairborn at Sidney, scoresbroadcast.com

Anna at Versailles, 97.5 WTGR-FM

Bethel at Fort Loramie

Delphos St. John’s at Minster, www.fun1071.fm

Coldwater at New Bremen, wcsmradio.com

Hardin Northern at Riverside, 98.3 WPKO-FM

Marion Elgin at Lehman Catholic

All games except for Elgin at Lehman kick off at 7 p.m. on Friday. Lehman’s game kicks off at 7 on Saturday at Sidney Memorial Stadium.

SIDNEY — Lehman Catholic will play the second of two games at Sidney Memorial Stadium this weekend.

The Cavaliers will host Marion Elgin in a Northwest Central Conference game at 7 p.m. on Saturday in their first game in Sidney since a 31-17 loss to Miami East in Week 2. Their most recent home game — a six-point loss to Graham — was in Piqua in Week 3, and their first two NWCC games have been on the road.

Lehman (2-3, 2-0 NWCC) beat Ridgemont 42-20 last week to stay undefeated in NWCC play. The Cavaliers will look to stay perfect against winless Elgin.

The Comets started the season with a 43-0 loss to Northmor and then forfeited a Week 2 matchup to Adena due to low numbers. They’ve been more competitive since, though, including in a 42-28 loss to Riverside last Friday.

Elgin is averaging 273 yards of offense and 26 points per game. Senior quarterback Evan Backensto has completed 18-of-39 passes for 405 yards with four touchdowns and three interceptions. The squad has gained 961 yards on the ground, with sophomore Cy Starcher (364 rushing yards, 4 TDs) and junior Landon Mabe (50, 234) leading the way.

The Cavaliers will look to score early and often against Elgin, which has given up at least 41 points in its four games on the field.

Lehman is averaging 308 yards and 21 points per game. Senior quarterback R.J. Bertini has completed 68-of-135 passes for 952 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions and rushed for 207 yards and three TDs.

Senior Brendan O’Leary leads the squad with 542 receiving yards and eight TDs on 31 catches. Senior Drew Barhorst has a team-high 248 rushing yards and has scored two TDs on 75 carries.

Sophomore linebacker John Edwards is having another stellar season for Lehman. He has 40 tackles and two interceptions to his credit.

Anna at Versailles

The Rockets will try to get back on track on Friday after a heartbreaking loss to Marion Local last week and snap Versailles’ two-game Midwest Athletic Conference winning streak in the process.

Anna (4-1, 2-1 MAC), which is ranked sixth in Division VI in this week’s state Associated Press poll, averages 394 yards and 41 points per game and allows an average of 253 yards and 11 points per game.

Anna senior running back Riley Huelskamp and quarterback Bart Bixler both rank in the top three in the MAC in rushing yards and touchdowns. Huelskamp is second in yards (678) and tied for first in TDs (12) while Bixler is third in rushing yards (550) and TDs (11). Bixler has also thrown for 486 yards and three touchdowns with one interception.

Versailles (3-2, 2-1) averages 332 yards and 28 points per game and allows an average of 246 yards and 22 points per game.

Versailles senior quarterback Ryan Martin has thrown for 797 yards and six touchdowns with two interceptions while sophomore running back Landon Henry has run for 366 yards and two TDs.

Sophomore Eli McEldowney has caught 18 passes for a team-high 290 yards with one TD and is also a threat as a kick returner. He’s returned 12 kickoffs for 349 yards and scored touchdowns on two returns.

Bethel at Fort Loramie

The Redskins will look to continue what they hope is a big roll in Cross County Conference play this Friday.

Fort Loramie (4-1, 3-0), which is tied for sixth in D-VII in this week’s state poll, blasted winless Bradford 56-0 last week and will try for another big win against Bethel (1-4, 1-2).

The Bees lost 34-0 to Northridge in Week 1 but have been competitive in their other losses, including a 12-0 loss to Tri-Village last week. Their lone victory was a 19-18 win over winless Tri-County North in Week 3.

Delphos St. John’s at Minster

Minster is hoping to start Oktoberfest weekend with its second consecutive big MAC win when it hosts St. John’s on Friday.

The Wildcats, which are ranked eighth in D-VII in this week’s state poll, beat Parkway 39-7 last week to rebound from an 18-point loss to Coldwater the previous week. They average 355 yards and 31 points per game and allow an average of 304 yards and 21 points per game. Senior running back Alex Schmitmeyer ranks first in the MAC in rushing yards (768) and TDs (12) while senior QB Jacob Niemeyer is fourth in passing yards (797) and tied for third in passing TDs (6).

St. John’s (1-4, 0-3) hasn’t won since beating winless Elida 28-27 in Week 1. The Blue Jays blew a late lead against Versailles last Saturday. They average 235 yards and 14 points per game and allow an average of 320 yards and 28 points per game.

Coldwater at New Bremen

The Cardinals are looking for a marquee MAC victory when they host undefeated Coldwater on Friday.

New Bremen (4-1, 2-1) has won two straight MAC games since losing 45-0 to Anna in Week 3. The Cardinals average 327 and 28 points per game and allow an average of 275 yards and 21 points per game. Mitchell Hays ranks fifth in the MAC in rushing yards (516) and fourth in TDs (9).

The Cavaliers are ranked No. 1 in D-VI in this week’s state AP poll. They average a MAC-best 409 yards and 40 points per game and allow an average 267 yards and 12 points per game. Quarterback Jake Hemmelgarn has thrown for 966 yards and 11 TDs and has rushed for 521 yards and seven TDs.

Hardin Northern at Riverside

The Pirates rebounded from a heartbreaking Week 4 loss to Lehman Catholic with a 42-28 victory at Marion Elgin. They’ll look to make it two in a row when they host Hardin Northern (3-2, 2-1), which lost its first NWCC game last week by nine points to Lima Perry.

The Pirates average 305 yards and 21 points per game. Junior quarterback Kale Long has thrown for 425 yards and four touchdowns with six interceptions and has rushed for 711 yards and seven TDs.

The Polar Bears average 351 rushing yards and 31.6 points per game. Sophomore Nevin Robson has thrown for 768 yards and eight touchdowns and three interceptions while junior Owen Wetherill has rushed for 537 yards and nine TDs.

Lehman Catholic’s R.J. Bertini runs during a Northwest Central Conference game against Riverside on Sept. 20 in De Graff. Bertini has thrown for 952 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions and has rushed for 207 yards and three TDs.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2019/10/web1_DSC_6546-2-.jpgLehman Catholic’s R.J. Bertini runs during a Northwest Central Conference game against Riverside on Sept. 20 in De Graff. Bertini has thrown for 952 yards with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions and has rushed for 207 yards and three TDs. Steve Egbert | Sidney Daily News
Anna looks to rebound against Versailles

By Bryant Billing

bbilling@sidneydailynews.com

WEEK 6 AREA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE

Fairborn at Sidney, scoresbroadcast.com

Anna at Versailles, 97.5 WTGR-FM

Bethel at Fort Loramie

Delphos St. John’s at Minster, www.fun1071.fm

Coldwater at New Bremen, wcsmradio.com

Hardin Northern at Riverside, 98.3 WPKO-FM

Marion Elgin at Lehman Catholic

All games except for Elgin at Lehman kick off at 7 p.m. on Friday. Lehman’s game kicks off at 7 on Saturday at Sidney Memorial Stadium.

Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.

Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.