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2014 Ohio Heritage Conference Football Previews
2013 Record: 11-3 overall, 7-1 OHC
Head Coach: Kurt Forrest (5th season)
Preview: The 2014 Mechanicsburg Indians are looking to better their historical 2013 season, when they qualified for the State Semifinals for the first time in school history. The good news for the Indians is; there are a lot of tools in place to do just that.
Mechanicsburg returns 6 players in their multiple set offense (which predominately run out of a spread formation or an I-formation), including standout running back Aeryton Erwin (2,193 rushing yards and 29 TDs) and Sophomore quarterback Kaleb Romero (1,100 passing yards, 888 rushing yards and 21 total TDs). “With a lot of returners back off last year’s Regional Championship team, the expectations are very high,” stated head coach Kurt Forrest. Romero is a talented athlete (state champion wrestler) with strength, mobility and an accurate arm. When he’s not handing the ball off to Erwin or tucking and running himself, he will look to Tim Rader and Joe Ziegler as his primary receiving targets.
The Indians should be electric on offense once again after scoring the second most points overall in the conference a season ago. Erwin and Romero will look to better their combined 4,000+ yards and 50 combined TDs. To put that number into perspective, Erwin and Romero’s 50 TDs a season ago were more than half of the OHC teams scored as a team.
Defensively, the Indians also return 6 starters to their 4-2-5 defense. The defensive unit ranked 3rd a season ago in the OHC, but with a unit anchored behind defensive tackle Brandon Woodruff (2nd team All-OHC a season ago), the Indians look to improve upon that stat. “The biggest keys to our success will be how fast our team matures and handles adversity when things aren’t going smooth,” said Forrest. “If we come together as one and fight like crazy for each other, this group has a lot of potential.”
The Indians lost some solid talent last year, including All-OHC members Brandon Purk, Tyler Lauchard, Grant Marshall and Jim Gano; but the core that returns has the entire village of Mechanicsburg buzzing heading into the fall. “If the kids continue to sacrifice for each other and play as one, then we believe that we should be able to compete at a very high level every Friday night,” said Forrest.
Coach Forrest sees Greeneview and West Liberty-Salem as the two biggest threats at beating the Indians for the OHC title in 2014, but he also sees his Mechanicsburg Indians as one of the front-runners. With 12 returning starters, a majority of the offensive production and the return of that “rock ‘em” swagger, there is no reason to believe otherwise. Mechanicsburg opens their season at Division 5 State Semifinalist West Jefferson, whom the Indians lost to 21-6 last season.
2013 Record: 1-9 overall, 1-6 OHC
Head Coach: Greg Bonifay (8th season)
Preview: The Southeastern Trojans are looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2013 season, in which they only won one game. With 14 returning starters, there is little doubt that the Trojans will improve upon last season’s mark. “We played a lot of younger kids last year,” said veteran head coach Greg Bonifay. “Our staff is looking for this experience to pay off in 2014.”
Southeastern returns 6 starters to the “spread” offense. Ben Miller will take snaps at quarterback this season, with Kyle Rowe joining him in the backfield. Gabe Xavathone, Trever King and Austin Spears will all line-up as receivers, giving the Miller some dynamic targets. The offensive line returns Masen Severt and Luke South. The Trojan offense only averaged 14.4 points per game a season ago, but with their current experience and talent, that number should be much higher this season. “The kids worked hard this summer and we are excited to see this hard work pay off,” added Bonifay.
Defensively, the Trojans are in even better shape as 8 starters return. Linebacker Rowe and defensive back Miller will lead the way. With 4 returning members of the secondary, Southeastern will be extremely tough in stopping the pass. Lining up in a 4-2 base defensive formation, both Severt and South return on the defensive line giving the Trojans a solid nucleus to apply pressure to opposing quarterbacks and stop the run.
While the Trojans lost all 3 of their All-OHC footballers from a season ago, their strength is in returning starters. 14 returning starters is a huge number at the high school level, and while Southeastern is still a young team; they should be mature for their age because of that experience.
Health and maturity are two things that Coach Bonifay note are pertinent to the success of the 2014 Trojans. “We have to stay healthy and get better every day,” said Bonifay, adding, “Again this season we will have some young players getting time, and how fast they mature will play a large role in the success we have.”
Experience, talent and a positive attitude; three things that are essential to the success of any football team and three attributes that the Trojans are able to call “strengths.” While 2013 was a bit of a disappointment, 2014 should be as much of an improvement. Look for Southeastern to battle all season long and continue to mature and grow into a very good football team. The Trojans open up their 2014 campaign at home against Northwestern, whom Southeastern fell 28-27 to a season ago.
Check back on 8/20
West Liberty-Salem Tigers
Check back on 8/22
Check back on 8/25
2014 OHC Projections:
Check back on 8/25
All OHC Football Teams Announced
The 2013 All Ohio Heritage Conference football team was announced this week. Sophomore Triad Quarterback Trent McInyre was voted the OHC player of the year by participating coaches. Congrats to everyone who made the list. For the full All-OHC football list, including 2nd team and honorable mention, click here.
ALL OHC FIRST TEAM
Tre McIntyre (TD)
Doug Lowe (TD)
Trent McIntyre (TD)
Chaz Adams (TD)
Jacob McCreary (TD)
Steven Feasel (TD)
Aeryton Erwin (MB)
Brandon Purk (MB)
Tyler Lauchard (MB)
Ben Burden (WLS)
Taylor Cordell (WLS)
Kyle Crawford (WLS)
Caleb Coe (CED)
Adam Cain (CED)
Josh Rodgers (CED)
Matt McMahan (CED)
Dalton Caudill (GV)
Chance Frye (GV)
Trey Ellis (GV)
Drey Williams (NE)
Clayton Farquer (NE)
Bryant Banion (SE)
Premature Preseason Preview (2014 OHC Football)
Well…the hangover from one of the most exciting seasons in Ohio Heritage Conference history is mostly over, so we can finally start looking ahead to 2014 (entirely way too early). One thing we stated in the preseason a year ago was that the OHC would be extremely balanced in 2013. While Triad completed a perfect season, it was far from easy and the balance was obvious. As we look back on 2013, and look ahead to 2014 and what schools have which players returning; we will say with confidence that 2014 should be even more competitive. We projected a 3 team race last season; in 2014 we have a hard time calling it anything other than a 5 team race. The OHC did as well as they ever have in the playoffs in 2013, but the scary part is…the OHC will be better all-around in 2014. On to our “Premature Preseason Preview”…oh, and thanks to my HS English teacher (Mrs. Williams) for allowing me to use that fancy paroemion (weird word definition here: http://rhetoric.byu.edu/figures/P/paroemion.htm).
Catholic Central – The Irish should see roster numbers and depth start to increase again next season. With that, Catholic Central should also see their success on the field improve. While the Irish will more than likely not find themselves major contenders as soon as next season, they should find themselves majorly improved.
Cedarville – The Indians had more success this season than anyone outside of Cedarville anticipated. With the return of star running back Caleb Coe and a newfound swagger, the Indians should be very competitive again next season. Cedarville should be strong both on defense and in the running game again next season.
Greeneveiew – The Rams return a lot of talent from their 6-4 squad a season ago. Headlining the list of returners is Quarterback Chance Frye who was one of the top QB’s in the league this past season. The Rams lose only 8 of their 43 man roster from a season ago and therefor have higher expectations than they’ve ever had in Jamestown.
Mechancisburg – The Indians will look to repeat their success from a season ago and they will return enough key personnel to do that if they can fill some voids. While the Indians lose four of their five lineman, they return star running back Aeryton Erwin and breakout Quarterback Kaleb Romero. There is no reason to believe that the Indians won’t be a front runner in the OHC in 2014.
Northeastern – The Jets had very high expectations coming into this past season with their entire backfield returning. Unfortunately for Northeastern, they couldn’t turn the corner and for the most part, struggled. With most of their offensive production graduating, the Jets have a lot of voids to try and fill. If the younger players don’t step up for the Jets, it could be a long season.
Southeastern – The Trojans will look to bounce back from a tough season this past year. Southeastern was trying to fill a lot of holes left by graduation last season and were a fairly young team. While there aren’t any “standouts” returning to the Trojans (per say); there are a lot of key members on both sides of the ball that make this team a dark horse for 2014.
Triad – The Cardinals will look to defend their OHC championship in 2014, and while the Cardinals lose some irreplaceable players, there is enough remaining personnel to repeat. Yes, nearly half of their roster is lost to graduation (including standouts Tre McIntyre, Doug Lowe and Steven Feasel), but returning are standouts Trent McIntyre, Chaz Adams along with lineman Colton Coil and Harrison Levan. Triad will remain electric on offense will be considered the OHC favorite for 2014 until beaten.
West Liberty-Salem – The Tigers are looking to get back atop of the OHC in 2014, but they will need some younger players to step-up if they want to do so. Taylor Cordell, the Tigers undebatable leader, graduates; but returning are star Quarterback Brandon Upton and standout receiver Landon Williams. With a lot of talent back, the Tigers will find themselves in the hunt for the OHC title again in 2014.
Way Too Early 2014 OHC Predictions
1. Triad 8-2 (6-1)
2. Greeneview 8-2 (5-2)
3. Mechanicsburg 7-3 (5-2)
4. West Liberty-Salem 7-3 (4-3)
5. Cedarville 6-4 (3-4)
6. Southeastern 4-6 (2-5)
7. Northeastern 3-7 (2-5)
8. Catholic Central 2-8 (1-6)
2013 OHC Website MVP
Congratulations to the 2013 OHC Football Website MVP, Aeryton Erwin of Mechanicsburg. Erwin, a Junior, becomes the 7th MVP in this websites history and the second player from Mechanicsburg to take the award. Erwin had an outstanding season in 2013, leading the Indians to an 8-2 record, playoff berth, Regional Championship and the school's first ever trip to the State Semifinals. In all, Erwin finished his school record setting 2013 campaign with over 2,100 yards and 28 rushing touchdowns. Erwin averaged over 7 yards per carry on the season and rushed for 100+ yards in 11 of the team's 14 games.
This award is voted on in a three step process; a poll on this page, social media vote and a media vote. This year's contest was the closest ever. Caleb Coe of Cedarville won the poll vote, Trent McIntyre of Triad won the social media vote and Erwin won the media vote. With a 3-way tie, the vote was sent back out to social media, where Erwin took 119 of the 250 total votes to win the award.
For a full list of award winners click here: Past OHC Website MVP's
2013 OHC FOOTBALL WEBSITE MVP FINALISTS
2nd Place: Caleb Coe, Cedarville
Coe led the Indians to their 1st winning season and playoff berth since 2001. The Junior running back finished the year with 1,572 rushing yards and 14 TDs. Coe also grabbed 9 receptions for 165 yards and 1 additional TD.
3rd Place: Trent McIntyre, Triad
McIntyre led the Cardinals to their first unbeaten season in school history and 1st outright league title in OHC history. The Sophomore quarterback completed nearly 59% of his passes on the season, throwing for a league leading 2,061 yards, with 18 TDs to just 10 INTs. Was just as impressive with his feet, rushing for an additional 720 yards and 14 TDs.
4th Place: Taylor Cordell, West Liberty-Salem
Cordell led an inexperienced Tiger squad to an 8-2 record and 3rd consecutive playoff berth. A dynamic all-around athlete, the Senior led the Tigers rushing attack with 808 yards on just 104 carries and added 17 rushing TDs. Had 3 additional TDs for the Tigers, as Cordell was stellar on special teams, in the passing game and defensively.
5th Place: Chance Frye, Greeneview
Frye led the Rams to their 1st winning season since the 1990's. Frye completed 56% of his passes, throwing for 1,399 yards, 16 TDs (and just 4 INTs). The Junior Quarterback was a dual threat all season giving defense's fits. In addition to his impressive passing stats, Frye rushed for 1,114 yards 18 additional TDs.
The Best OHC Teams of All-Time
We recently counted down the Top 10 OHC Football teams of all-time based on a formula designed by our expert. Below is a list of the rankings. To see a full list and description of each team and why they are ranked where click here: Top 10 OHC Times of All-Time
#1 - 2007 Catholic Central
#2 - 2006 Mechanicsburg
#3 - 2004 West Liberty-Salem
#4 - 2013 Triad
#5 - 2001 Southeastern
#6 - 2009 West Liberty-Salem
#7 - 2008 Mechanicsburg
#8 - 2012 West Liberty-Salem
#9 - 2003 Triad
#10 - 2001 Cedarville
Introducing the ohcsports.com Fan Shop!
We are excited to announce that you can now get ohcsports.com gear in our fan shop! You will become an official contributor to the website with your purchase as a proceed of each sales comes back to the website!
Did you know that it costs over $500 annually to maintain our websites? That figure doesn't include the countless hours applied to updating, improving and reporting to and for our fans.
We have unsuccessfully sought advertisers and donations in the past in order to offset some of the costs of our websites, so we thought we would try a way to offer you something in return for your contributions.
Please note that when purchasing, none of the proceeds go towards the Ohio Heritage Conference or the member schools. This website is not affiliated with either of those entities in anyway. Your purchase goes directly towards offsetting the costs of this non-affiliated website.
Thank you in advance for your contribution and respect for our efforts.
Visit our fan shop here:
OHC Collegiate Players
The OHC Football webpage is trying to compile a complete list of former OHC football players who are now playing at the collegiate level. You can find the link to this page on the left hand side of your screen on the main navigation bar.
We need your help in compiling complete and accurate information. If you have any information on former OHC football players, please email it to email@example.com so we can publish it online.
Each player will be listed under their former high school and their name and college will provide a link to their collegiate profile (if applicable).
Coaches, Athletic Directors, Media Sources, Fans,
The OHC Football Website needs statistics following each game to keep our website informative and keep our league leaders up to date. If you have access to post game statistics, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you cannot email them, let us know and we can arrange for other means of delivery. It is important that each school turns these in so that the OHC Football Website can remain the most informative, up-to-date and BEST high school football conference website in Ohio.
Send in Your Photos
Share your photos with the all of the fans in the Ohio Heritage Conference. You can aide in making our website better by submitting your game photos. It's easy and every time you submit a photo, it will go in our photo albums with your named referenced as the photographer.
To submit your photos, simply email them to email@example.com. If you have any information on the photo, including player names, please include. Thanks for your help in making the OHC Football webpage so informative!
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