It wasn't pretty, but the Olentangy High School football team appears to have clinched a spot in the Division II playoffs after defeating Westerville North 9-0 on Friday.

"I'm extremely happy for these guys because nobody really gave us much of a chance to be a very good football team," Olentangy coach Ed Terwilliger said. "Winning seven games is a tremendous
accomplishment and now we get to go home, have a Pepsi and wait."

Olentangy improved to 7-3 overall and 4-3 in the OCC-Cardinal Division. North dropped to 2-8 overall and 1-6 in the league.

Olentangy was forced to play a sloppy brand of football as heavy rainfall turned the field into a mud pit. The Braves adapted to the conditions and rushed for 163 yards, while controlling the clock for the majority of the game.

Quarterback Justin Johnson sealed the victory with a 1-yard touchdown run with two minutes, 23 seconds. Kicker Ryan DiSabato accounted for the only other points in the game, connecting on a 20-yard field goal midway through the second quarter.

Thomas Carpenter was the workhorse for the Braves, carrying the ball 26 times for 120 yards. Carpenter provided stability to an offense that was searching for answers after losing to Westerville South 21-7 on Oct.

"It feels good for our team to come out and win and hopefully make the playoffs," Carpenter said. "That's what we were shooting for and everyone's happy about it."

Five of North's losses this season were by a combined 12 points.

"Winning 9-0 makes me ecstatic," Terwilliger said. "If we would have won 2-0 I would have been happy. It's getting a win and we knew they were going to play hard."

The Warriors wanted to play ball control with running back Justin Brewton and quarterback Chris McCluney. They accomplished that on their first two possessions, but a physical Olentangy defense proved to be too
much in the end. Brewton finished with 31 yards on 10 carries.

"We tried to establish the run and we came out and did so right away," North coach Chad Williams said. "When push came to shove and the game was on the line, we just didn't execute."

Running back David Lomax gave the North offense a spark with a 36-yard run early in the fourth quarter, but the drive stalled and the Warriors couldn't mount a threat after that.

"Any loss is tough and with your last home game there are a lot of emotions," Williams said about senior night. "The reality is that for the vast majority of guys, this is it for them."
Carpenter said his team is prepared for a postseason run.

"After the regular season, we like to say that we're 0-0 and that all teams are even," he said. "We're going to try to take advantage of other teams, look at film and get ready for next week."

OLENTANGY 0 3 0 6-9
O-DiSabato 20 FG
O-Johnson 1 run (kick failed)