Grove City Christian School football coach Andrew McCampbell and Africentric coach Mark Treece believe their teams are in similar situations.

Grove City Christian School football coach Andrew McCampbell and Africentric coach Mark Treece believe their teams are in similar situations.

The Eagles and Nubians, who both have limited rosters, will meet Friday, Sept. 4, at Grove City Christian.

Both teams dropped their openers Aug. 28, as Grove City Christian lost at Columbus Academy 33-0 and Africentric lost at Ansonia 44-42.

"It's going to be a great game to watch," said Treece, who is in his first season. "Everybody looks at some of these teams with 65 to 70 kids. Grove City Christian is on the same page that we are. They don't have that luxury. They have to plug (kids in) and play."

McCampbell said his team was hurt by big plays and costly mistakes against Academy, as the Vikings scored on an 88-yard kickoff return by Michael Kusi to open the game and Roman Bellisari added a 63-yard touchdown run later in the opening quarter.

Running back Caleb Newkirk led the Eagles with 80 yards rushing on 11 carries.

"We just have to get better and keep working," McCampbell said. "We didn't quit. They kept playing, so that was a good thing."

Treece said his team played well against Ansonia and fatigue was a factor in the second half. The Nubians were outscored 32-16 in the second half.

Treece was impressed with Tyler Potts' play at quarterback, along with the effectiveness of his team's running game.

"Africentric will be fast," McCampbell said. "They'll have pretty good athletes just like they normally do. They're a good matchup for us. We're both Division VII. It's a good fit for both schools."

Cross country teams short on experience

Cross country coach Mindy Bankey began her second season with relatively inexperienced boys and girls teams.

The Eagles return just two runners in senior Brett Crabtree for the boys and junior Allison Hatfield for the girls.

Hatfield is the only returning district qualifier from last season, as she was 92nd in the Division III race.

Other runners for the boys are freshmen Gabe Engler, Zack Frank and Will Mayhew.

Bankey expects Crabtree and Mayhew to emerge as the top runners for the boys.

Senior Olivia Frank and junior Jessica Mitchell round out the girls team.

"These kids are extremely dedicated," Bankey said. "They're pushing themselves hard and want to get better and want to improve. They're also trying to attract others to get involved in the sport."

Boys golf team returns key players

The boys golf team returns several key players in senior Olivia Nester, juniors Dane Long and Zach Strawser and sophomore Clayton Buck. All of them competed in a Division III sectional last season.

Other golfers are sophomore Jason Baker and freshmen Gabe Burgess, Hunter Oda and Mark Rieser.

"I am very proud of the play by the students this year," second-year coach Rex Vandermark said. "We have already gotten to nine wins, which more than doubles the amount of wins we had last season. We also continue to improve our overall scores as well."