The host Franklin Heights High School football team began the Mike Owens era with a 21-14 victory Aug. 24 over the coach’s former team, Westerville North.
It was the 36th consecutive loss for the Warriors, who went 0-30 the past three seasons under Owens.
Following the game, he admitted to having mixed feelings.
"I feel bad for them, too," Owens said of his former team. "It's tough. It's very tough for those kids. However, I'm happier than hell for our guys. It's a special group. They are hard-working kids built from a rough cloth, which I love. I'm really happy for our kids."
The Falcons took a 7-0 lead when Sam Reed ran for a 24-yard touchdown midway through the second quarter. The Warriors tied the score in the third when Jonathan Taylor ran in from 3 yards out, capping a 67-yard drive.
The Falcons answered back on Reed’s 13-yard touchdown run. Matt German extended the lead to 21-7 with a 12-yard touchdown run three minutes later.
The Warriors pulled within one score early in the fourth when quarterback Austin Smales connected with Moses Vasquez for a 42-yard touchdown, but they failed to get the tying touchdown on their next three possessions.
The last time the Falcons opened the season with a victory was 2007, when they beat Riverside Stebbins 12-10.
North’s last win came Sept. 19, 2008, when they defeated Westerville Central 21-17.
"They're hurt," North coach Rodger Elander said. "I really thought they earned the hurt. They are disappointed because they put in a lot of effort getting ready for the first game of the year. They worked hard enough, but we didn't work well enough."
FH -- Reed 24 run (Spangler kick)
WN -- Taylor 3 run (Kramer kick)
FH -- Reed 13 run (Spangler kick)
FH -- German 12 run (Spangler kick)
WN -- Vasquez 42 pass from Smales (Kramer kick)