The Bexley High School football team will try for its first win under first-year coach Nathan Castorena when it visits Grandview on Friday, Sept. 22, in an MSL-Ohio matchup.
The Lions dropped to 0-4 after losing their league opener to Liberty Union 41-7 on Sept. 15. The Bobcats are 2-2 after losing to Ready 24-22 that same night.
Grandview is looking to even the most recent series against the Lions, who hold a 2-1 edge since the teams became league rivals again in 2014. The teams have a long tradition going back to when they were members of the Central Buckeye League and Buckeye Athletic Conference.
Before Bexley's 42-16 win in 2014, the teams last met in 1998. The Lions won that contest 39-9.
"I used to live in Grandview and I would go down and watch (the Bobcats) play, and they always have a sound, disciplined team," Castorena said. "They have a good defense with Mike Lanza as the defensive coordinator. I knew Mike from my days (as an assistant) at Gahanna, and he will have them ready."
Grandview is led by the Lachey brothers, the sons of former Ohio State and NFL player Jim Lachey. James Lachey, a senior Bowling Green commit, is a Division VI all-state performer on the defensive line who also plays tight end and running back.
Against Ready, he rushed 22 times for 94 yards with two touchdowns and a two-point conversion run. He also caught four passes for 104 yards, including a 76-yard touchdown from sophomore quarterback Kyle Casey.
Sophomore Luke Lachey had four catches for 99 yards at wide receiver and two interceptions at defensive back.
"They run the jet sweep a little more, but we're two running programs that try to do a lot of the same things," Castorena said. "We're similar in a lot of regards."
Against Liberty Union, Anthony Welsh was 7-for-10 passing for 91 yards and two interceptions. Isaiah McFadden rushed for 53 yards on nine carries, Tyler Mitchell had two receptions for 57 yards and Connor Damron had a 9-yard touchdown run.
"We pretty much ran the ball whenever we wanted, but we shot ourselves in the foot," Castorena said. "We had 200 yards of total offense, but had 100 yards in (seven) penalties. That makes things tough."