Class 5A Sectional 14
Columbus East (8-1) at New Palestine (9-0)
GAME TIME: 7 p.m. at Kelso Stadium.
COACHES: Bob Gaddis, 167-32 in 16th year at Columbus East, 285-132 in 38th year overall. Kyle Ralph, 50-2 in 4th year at New Palestine.
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OPPONENTS’ RECORDS: Columbus East 35-46, New Palestine 39-42.
SERIES LAST 30 YEARS: New Palestine, 2-1.
LAST MEETING: New Palestine, 24-14, Nov. 6, 2015, sectional.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: New Palestine — QB Gunnar Large, RB DuRon Ford, WR Brady Walden, DB Adam Kincaid, LB Josh Glover; Columbus East — QB Josh Major (11), RB Jamon Hogan (11), WR Cam Wilson (12), WR Caleb Voelker (12), LB TC O’Neal (12).
NOTES: The second-ranked New Palestine Dragons and fifth-ranked Columbus East Olympians have never met in the regular season, but they can’t seem to avoid each other in the state tournament … The teams are playing for a fourth straight postseason with the Dragons leading the series 2-1 … Since losing to Columbus East in the 2013 4A semistate, the Dragons have won two in a row, including during the 2014 4A semistate and the 5A sectional championship last year … The Dragons first win of the series took place at Kelso Stadium where they have won 21 straight … The Olympians average 342.3 rushing yards per game, which is sixth best in the state, according to Maxpreps … They have rushed for 3,081 yards led by junior Jamon Hogan (1,285 yards, 23 TDs)… New Palestine is sixth in the state in total yards with 4,263 … Senior running back DuRon Ford is fifth in the state with 1,774 yards, seventh in yards per game (197.1) and first in touchdowns (32).
NEXT ROUND: Sectional semifinal on Oct. 28 vs. Martinsville (drew first-round bye).
Class 4A Sectional 22
Mount Vernon (6-3) at Richmond (4-5)
GAME TIME: 7 p.m. at Lyboult Field.
COACHES: Doug Armstrong, 43-22 in 6th year at Mount Vernon (Fortville), 95-78 in 16th year overall. Matt Holeva, 29-21 in 5th year at Richmond, 90-44 in 13th year overall.
OPPONENTS’ RECORDS: Mount Vernon (Fortville) 43-37, Richmond 39-42.
SERIES LAST 30 YEARS: No meetings.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Mt. Vernon — QB Zac Montgomery (11), RB Eric Jones (11), LB Nathan Seifert (12), LB Mitch McCarthy (12), DL/LB Charles Degraff (12); Richmond — QB Alston Bane (12), RB Ronald Sanders (11), WR Thomas Stanley (12), WR Dasean Jones (12).
NOTES: The Mt. Vernon Marauders are peaking at the right time. After a worrisome 1-3 start to the season, coach Doug Armstrong’s group has surged to win five straight and put the program in position for its fifth consecutive winning campaign … Quarterback Zac Montgomery has turned it up through the recent streak, posting three games with 200-plus yards passing and 10 touchdowns through the air and four rushing … Running back Eric Jones is coming off a breakout game against Yorktown … The junior rushed for 195 yards and four touchdowns, upping his season yardage total to 822 … Senior linebacker Nathan Seifert has tallied double-digit total tackles in six games, including three straight with 10 the past three weeks … Richmond has been up and down all year, unable to win more than one game in a row … The Red Devils have finished 5-5 the past two years.
NEXT ROUND: Sectional semifinal on Oct. 28 vs. winner between Pendleton Heights and Connersville.
Greenfield-Central (5-4) at Jay County (6-3)
GAME TIME: 7:30 p.m. at Schutz Stadium.
COACHES: Adam Sherman, 5-4 in 1st year at Greenfield-Central. Tim Millspaugh, 19-21 in 4th year at Jay County.
OPPONENTS’ RECORDS: Greenfield-Central 38-43, Jay County 34-47.
SERIES LAST 30 YEARS: Jay County, 3-1.
LAST MEETING: Jay County, 28-13, Oct. 12, 2007.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Greenfield-Central — RB Skylar Gary (12), RB Michael Sosnowski (12), WR Orlando Mojica (11), DB Bryce Ratliff (12); Jay County — QB Holton Hill (11), RB Cole Stigleman (11), RB Jacob Geesaman (12), RB Ryan Schlechty (10), LB Ethan Theurer (11).
NOTES: The Greenfield-Central Cougars ended the regular season on a positive note, successfully defending Clayton Myers Field with a perfect 4-0 record at home … The last time the Cougars were unbeaten at Cougars Stadium during the regular season was in 2002 … The win pushed them to 5-4, guaranteeing the Cougars their first non-losing season since 2011 … Greenfield-Central is averaging 284.0 yards rushing per game, which is 30th best in the state, according to Maxpreps … Senior rushers Michael Sosnowski and Skylar Gary have combined for 21 rushing touchdowns and 2,078 yards … Jay County’s big run stopper is junior Ethan Theurer with 101 total tackles and seven for a loss … The Patriots offense has been driven by committee with junior Cole Stigleman leading the way with 860 yards rushing and 148 yards receiving for 12 touchdowns overall … Ryan Schlechty and Jacob Geesaman complete the backfield with 15 touchdowns and 877 yards.
NEXT ROUND: Sectional semifinal on Oct. 28 vs. winner between New Castle and Delta.
Class 2A Sectional 38
Eastern Hancock (4-5) at Centerville (3-6)
GAME TIME: 7 p.m. at Craig Field.
COACHES: Jim O’Hara, 24-9 in 3rd year at Eastern Hancock, 111-57 in 15th year overall. Kyle Padgett, 3-6 in 1st year at Centerville.
OPPONENTS’ RECORDS: Eastern Hancock 48-33, Centerville 46-35.
SERIES LAST 30 YEARS: Eastern Hancock, 1-0.
LAST MEETING: Eastern Hancock, 39-16, Oct. 18, 1996, sectional.
PLAYERS TO WATCH: Eastern Hancock — QB Jarett Lewis (11), RB/WR A.J. Muegge (11), RB Devin Denny (12), LB Brandon Francis (12), LB Spencer Maxwell (11); Centerville — RB Kody Witham (11), QB Dylan Benedict (10), DB Tyler Rodandello (12).
NOTES: The good times rolled for Eastern Hancock through September as the Royals won four straight games and finished the month 4-1… Since their run, the team has scuffled, losing three consecutive heading into the postseason… The Royals haven’t posted a losing season since 2011 … While only 3-6, Centerville leads the Sectional 38 field with a 2-0 record against intrasectional foes, including Northeastern and Union County… The win against Northeastern carries clout as the Knights went 7-2 this year … The key for the Royals will be senior Devin Denny, who has thrived with 100-plus yards rushing in six games and 931 yards total… Quarterback Jarett Lewis has 17 passing touchdowns through 105 completions and 1,610 yards … Centerville’s primary backfield threats are underclassmen… Kody Witham and Chris Pritchett lead the team in rushing yards, but six different players have scored at least one rushing touchdown.
NEXT ROUND: Sectional semifinal on Oct. 28 vs. winner between Switzerland County and Triton Central.