Football team faces Hartley for CCL honors
Ready High School football coach Joel Cutler believes his team can "hang with the best teams around" if it can keep mistakes to a minimum and continue the consistency on offense that is producing 42.7 points per game.
The Silver Knights will get a chance to prove that theory Friday, Oct. 26, when they travel to Hartley for the CCL-Gold Division championship.
The Hawks improved to 9-0 with a 41-6 win over Coshocton on Oct. 19 and were ranked first in last week's Division IV state poll. Hartley beat Ready 42-12 a year ago and has won the last two matchups between the teams.
The Silver Knights are 7-1, with their only loss coming to Lima Central Catholic 31-13 on Oct. 6. They beat Montpelier 45-0 on Oct. 13 and had a bye last weekend.
"To beat a great team like Hartley, you've got to play mistake-free football," Cutler said. "I think Hartley is probably better than Lima Central Catholic."
Both Hartley and Ready are battling for playoff position in Region 14. The last time Ready made the playoffs was in 2009, when it went 8-2 overall.
The Silver Knights finished 4-6 each of the last two seasons.
Senior running back Doug Strickler has become one of the area's top running backs with 903 yards and 14 touchdowns on 82 carries, and Akili Taylor has rushed for 927 yards on 117 carries. Quarterback Matt Yoho is 54-for-95 passing for 871 yards.
On defense, Ready has been led by Kelly Culbertson with eight interceptions and Austin Carnes with five interceptions.
The Silver Knights were ninth in last week's Division IV state poll and third in the area coaches poll behind Hartley and North Union.
Girls soccer team cruises into semifinal
The girls soccer team played Worthington Christian in a Division III district semifinal Oct. 23.
Ready, which earned the top seed for the district tournament for the first time, opened the postseason with a 16-0 win over Columbus International on Oct. 15 and beat Columbus School for Girls 5-0 on Oct. 18. The Silver Knights also defeated CSG 2-1 on Sept. 18.
In the postseason rematch with the Unicorns, Caroline Riewe had two goals and Donavan Capehart and Brooke Ringel both scored one goal. CSG also had an own goal.
"I thought we played a little flat defensively, so that's definitely something we need to step up," first-year coach Jason Montgomery said. "I'm a very optimistic person and with the senior class you can see that they have a will and they love to learn. With it being my first year I didn't know what to think, but when you have a Donavan Capehart who's just amazing and Caroline Riewe who has 21 goals (through 17 games), offense has kind of come together organically."
Ready beat Worthington Christian 3-2 in a second-round tournament game last season and 5-4 on Sept. 15.
The Silver Knights lost to Columbus Academy 3-2 in a district final last season. Worthington Christian beat Academy 4-0 on Oct. 18 in a second-round game.
Boys soccer team wins tourney opener
The boys soccer team opened the Division III district tournament with a 5-0 win over Wellington on Oct. 17 but lost to seventh-seeded Columbus International 2-1 on Oct. 20. Ready was seeded 16th for the district tournament and finished 6-10-2.
Against Wellington, Chris Wiser had three goals and Payne VanTilburg and Jimmy Hanley also scored.
"We played amazing (against Wellington)," said coach Sam Sunseri, whose team tied Wellington at 1 on Oct. 5 and played International for the first time. "We played so well against Hartley (in a 2-0 loss Oct. 2) and I said that if you play that well in every game, no one will touch you. It seemed like everyone was kind of ready (for the tournament)."