Bryant Garee is ready for his senior season with the Northridge High School football team, although the quarterback admits he probably won't sleep well the night before the Vikings open Friday, Aug. 29, at Arcanum.
"I probably won't get much sleep because it's the first game of my final high school season," said Garee, whose team finished 2-8 overall last season. "It's what we have all been working so hard for (in the offseason)."
It will be the first meeting between the programs. Last season, the Vikings opened with a 42-0 win over Millersport.
Arcanum is in Darke County, just north of Interstate 70 and 15 miles east of the Indiana border. The Trojans finished 5-5 last season and play in Division VI, Region 22. Senior quarterback Daniel O'Donnell rushed for 876 yards and 12 touchdowns and passed for 585 yards with six touchdowns and six interceptions last year.
"When you're on the road, you have to keep your head and not let the crowd get to you," Garee said. "You can't let things like that bother you."
Garee returns to lead the Vikings' spread offense with senior Chase Hess, who should contribute at running back and wide receiver.
"I think we started learning stuff earlier this year and the offense and defense is starting to jell more," Garee said. "I think we are doing really well at trusting what we're being taught, and when we trust our coaches and our teammates, everyone gets going and we can be hard to stop."
Boys soccer team returns key players
The boys soccer team returns its goalkeeper and its top five scorers from a team that finished 5-9-1 overall and fifth (3-4) in the LCL behind champion Watkins Memorial (6-0-1).
Junior Skyler Pritts (honorable mention all-league) is back in goal and junior midfielder Robi Patrick (second-team all-league) led a balanced attack last season with four goals and three assists. Other top scorers back are senior forward Connor Wood (2 goals, 3 assists), senior midfielder Tyler Miller (3 goals), senior midfielder Jesse Nussbaum (3 goals) and junior forward Noah Anderson (2 goals).
"We have incredible team chemistry and camaraderie," said first-year coach Korie Jesse, who replaced two-year coach Leonard Moffatt. "We're still learning each other's playing styles and what we need to do to mesh those styles together. That will come with time and practice."
Rounding out the starting lineup are seniors Jack Roudebush, Regan Turner and Trevor White and sophomore Randall Fox at defender and junior midfielder Kylor Kauahi.
Also on the roster are seniors Bryce Curtis (midfielder), Skylar Briggs (defender), Emily Dalton (defender), Paul Haught (defender), Jakob Rios (midfielder) and Tate VanFossen (defender), juniors Noah Tornes (forward) and Jordan Wolfe (defender), sophomores Trevor Blumensheid (defender), Aaron Boles (midfielder), Austin Boles (midfielder), Mitch Chesser (midfielder), Madison Parrill (midfielder) and Austin Stone (goalie/defender) and freshmen Casey Day (forward), Jacob Feightner (forward), Dylan Hewett (goalie/defender), Roman Kiser (midfielder) and Keifer Turner (midfielder).
The Vikings were 1-1 overall after defeating Johnstown 3-2 on Aug. 21 in their LCL opener. They also lost to Wellington 7-2 on Aug. 16. Anderson and Patrick scored.
Cross country teams see increased numbers
After having only four runners last season, the cross country program has increased numbers under first-year coach Kim Garee, who was an assistant under two-year coach Gene Weil.
The Vikings have eight boys runners after having two last season. The girls are up to five from two a year ago.
The only returning runner is junior Colin Evans, who leads the boys team.
"Colin Evans is our captain and has been running since he was in the seventh grade," Garee said. "This is our year to try to build the program. Last year, we had two high school girls and two high school boys. This year, we've gone from six to 19 runners in the high school and junior high, so we're really excited about that."
Rounding out the boys roster are senior Mat Scott, junior Zach Smith and freshmen Caleb Garee, Graham Garee, Roman Kiser, T.J. Langley and Stephen Padilla.
Seniors Emma Dann, Gabrielle Evans and Amelia Kyle lead the girls team, which also includes freshmen Anna Edwards and Alex Rahde.
Volleyball team gets win over Johnstown
The girls volleyball team was 1-1 overall and in the LCL before playing Granville on Aug. 23.
The Vikings defeated Johnstown 25-23, 25-13, 25-17 in a season-opening league match Aug. 19. Hunter Adkins had seven aces and Savannah Legg had 13 kills. Faith Miller had five aces with four kills, Megan Hatfield had seven kills and Jamie Swickard added six kills.
The Vikings also fell to Utica 25-12, 25-16, 25-5 on Aug. 21.
Golf team falls to Johnnies in LCL
The boys golf team is 3-7 in the LCL and will play Granville on Tuesday, Aug. 26, at Granville Golf Course.
Northridge lost to Johnstown 157-168 on Aug. 19 at Clover Valley despite co-medalist honors by Matt Simmons. The senior shot a 38 to share honors with the Johnnies' John Carlisle.
Brandon Estep (40) was next for the Vikings, followed by Steele Strout (43), Nick McConnell (47), Chris George (48) and Joel Hale (54).
Aug. 20 -- at Johnstown
Aug. 23 -- Newark Catholic Invitational at Bryn Du Mansion
Sept. 3 -- Fairfield Union Falcon Invitational
Sept. 6 -- McGowan Invitational at Watkins Memorial
Sept. 13 -- Newark Invitational at Evans Athletic Complex
Sept. 23 -- Fredericktown Denny Stevens Invitational at Kokosing Park
Sept. 27 -- Heath Don Hardin Invitational at Geller Park
Oct. 4 -- Johnstown Invitational at Infirmary Mound Park
Oct. 11 -- LCL meet at Watkins Memorial
Aug. 16 -- vs. Wellington
*Aug. 21 -- vs. Johnstown
Aug. 22 -- at Granville Christian
Aug. 26 -- vs. Delaware Christian
*Aug. 28 -- vs. Granville
*Sept. 4 -- at Licking Heights
*Sept. 9 -- vs. Licking Valley
*Sept. 11 -- vs. Heath
Sept. 16 -- vs. Liberty Union
Sept. 18 -- at Licking Valley
*Sept. 25 -- vs. Lakewood
*Sept. 30 -- at Watkins Memorial
Oct. 2 -- vs. Zanesville Rosecrans
Oct. 3 -- at Johnstown