For a team that was the No. 8 seed in the regional tournament, Wayne (Huber Heights)
is proving that it doesn't matter if you are the last team to reach the postseason. What matters is the opportunity.
Wayne (11-3) is taking that opportunity about four hours north when the Warriors play St. Edward (Lakewood)
(14-0) in the Division I state final at 7 p.m. Saturday at Canton's Fawcett Stadium.Click here to view MaxPreps' Ohio football playoff brackets.
For the second consecutive week, Wayne took care of business at Dayton's Welcome Stadium when the Warriors defeated Hilliard Davidson 28-14 in the state semifinals. Wayne defeated St. Xavier the previous week.
"For these kids to pull through and pull together and get this thing, wow," Wayne coach Jay Minton told the Dayton Daily News
Wayne is one of two Dayton-area teams in the state finals this week. Trotwood-Madison
(12-2) plays Maple Heights
(14-0) in the Division II state final at Massillon's Paul Brown Tiger Stadium at 7 p.m. Friday.
Wayne, which has won eight consecutive games, was again led by senior standout quarterback and Ohio State commit Braxton Miller
, who threw for 134 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for a touchdown. Senior running back Anthone Taylor
rushed 26 times for 182 yards and a touchdown. The defense was also strong – senior linebacker Teven Williams
had 10 tackles.
"We've been saying this (win state) since my freshman year, but it's here now," Miller told the publication. "We've just got to put it away."Video of Braxton Miller
Wayne will face a St. Ed's team that is very large on both lines of scrimmage. St. Ed's is regarded as one of the top teams in the nation. The Eagles are ranked No. 4 by the Xcellent 25 and No. 1 in the Freeman Rankings.
But, as Miller and Wayne have proved throughout the postseason, it's tough to count out the nation's top-rated quarterback and his offense.WATTERSON MAKES STATE FINALBishop Watterson (Columbus)
advanced to the Division III state final Saturday afternoon in Massillon after it defeated McNicholas 20-7. Watterson (12-1) plays Buchtel (Akron)
(11-3) in the Division III state championship at 3 p.m. Watterson held a 20-0 halftime lead over McNicholas and allowed a touchdown in the fourth quarter. McNicholas (11-3) made its first state semifinal appearance. It was the final game for McNicholas coach Steve Klonne, who announced earlier in the season that he was retiring. PRINCETON HAS A COACHING OPENING NOW
Bill Leach will not return as the Princeton (Cincinnati)
head football coach next season, according to the Enquirer.
Leach, the Vikings' coach the past five seasons, was 24-27 overall and 15-20 in the Greater Miami Conference during his tenure. Princeton athletic director Scott Kaufman told the paper the school hasn't named a replacement and the position will be posted. The school hopes to start the interview process in late December.BROWN IS THE NEW COACH AT SUMMIT
Mike Brown has been named the new Summit Country Day (Cincinnati)
football coach. Brown was previously the defensive coordinator for the Silver Knights. Former head coach Dan Starkey will be the team's offensive coordinator in 2011. Starkey took the head coaching position on short notice this past season and both he and athletic director Gregory Dennis agreed it was the correct time to elevate Brown to the head coaching position. Summit made its first postseason appearance this fall since 2000.MADARIS GETS FIRST OFFERArchbishop Moeller (Cincinnati)
junior wide receiver Monty Madaris
was offered by the University of Cincinnati on Nov. 24, according to the Enquirer. Madaris, who is 6-foot-2 and 185 pounds, had 50 receptions for 719 yards and seven touchdowns this past season. He also had 269 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Moeller coach John Rodenberg has said Madaris will be a major recruit in the 2012 class.TOP PERFORMERS* Matt Staubach, McNicholas:
The senior quarterback threw for 113 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 56 yards in the Rockets' 20-7 loss to Columbus Bishop Watterson in the Division III state semifinals.* Ally Malott, Madison Senior (Middletown):
The senior forward had 21 points in a 55-41 loss to Reynoldsburg in the season opener on Friday. Malott has committed to play college basketball at Dayton.MORE RECRUITING NEWSWinton Woods (Cincinnati)
senior linebacker Antonio Poole
plans to visit Nebraska at some point, according to the Enquirer. Poole has several scholarship offers including Cincinnati, Wake Forest, Michigan State and others. …Bishop Watterson (Columbus)
senior defensive tackle Hunter Maynard
has reportedly committed to Ball State, according to ScoutingOhio.com. Maynard also has offers from Central Florida and Western Michigan, according to the Web site. … Walnut Hills (Cincinnati)
senior tight end Benson Browne
will take an official visit to Illinois the weekend of Dec. 11. Browne has offers that include Illinois, North Carolina State, Marshall, West Virginia, Louisville and others.THIS WEEK
* St. Ursula Academy (Cincinnati) at Sycamore (Cincinnati)
girls' basketball, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday:
These two teams are expected to
be among the top 10 in the Cincinnati area this season. Sycamore is led
by junior guard Chloe Pavlech, who is verbally committed to Maryland.* Mason at Lakota West (West Chester)
girls' basketball, 2 p.m. Saturday:
These two Greater Miami Conference
powers meet in an intriguing early-season matchup. Mason is led by
senior guard Sarah Hunter, who has committed to play at Wright State.RANDOM THOUGHTS
The boys basketball season begins Friday in Ohio. La Salle (Cincinnati)
is the top-ranked team in the Cincinnati Enquirer area coaches' poll. … A decision is expected in the next few weeks on the Winton Woods head football coaching position. Andre Parker was the interim coach for the Warriors this season. … Mercy girls' basketball coach Mary Jo Huismann is still one win away from 600 as this week began. Mercy lost to Princeton in the season opener on Saturday. The Bobcats play Hughes on Dec. 1.
(Information from the Dayton Daily News, Cincinnati Enquirer and conference websites was used in this report)