A rivalry will be renewed when the Dublin Coffman High School football team plays at Dublin Jerome on Friday, Sept. 7.
The teams have not played since 2013 and have met only twice since Jerome opened in 2004.
"Anytime you play another Dublin school there is a natural-born rivalry because of the proximity and the relationship," said Coffman coach Mark Crabtree, whose team is 2-0. "It's a natural excitement.">> Dublin Coffman 38, Gahanna 25 << >> Pickerington North 35, Dublin Jerome 28 <<
The Shamrocks won the first two meetings, 48-6 in 2012 and 16-14 in 2013.
Jerome coach Bob Gecewich has awaited this meeting since coming to the Celtics in 2015. He believes it should be an annual showdown.
"I don't think there is any reason why the teams in the school district can't play every season," said Gecewich, whose team is 1-1. "Our kids are stoked. (The Shamrocks) have a lot of talent and an established system and program. Our kids are really up for it."
The Celtics lost to host Pickerington North 35-28 on Aug. 31. They trailed 14-0 in the second quarter and 21-7 at halftime but rallied to take a 28-21 lead in the fourth quarter, only to see the Panthers score the game's final 14 points.
"We decided to play in the second half (against North)," Gecewich said. "We didn't play well in the first half. We learned that when we play against a team that probably has more talent that you cannot take plays off."
Quarterback Hayden Schell led the Celtics, completing 20 of 37 passes for 307 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for 23 yards and two scores.
His top targets were Trey Ballengee (9 catches, 107 yards, 1 TD), Ryan Keys (6 catches, 142 yards, 1 TD) and Luke Martin (6 catches, 69 yards).
"When you talk Coffman, Scioto or Jerome, you know you are going to have kids who are playing hard and playing well," Crabtree said. "Their kids understand their schemes, what their roles are and do what they need to do to be successful. They believe in their system and they do that with a passion."
Coffman held off a second-half charge by host Gahanna in a 38-25 win Aug. 31.
Bryon Threats scored on an 87-yard punt return with 11 minutes, 36 seconds left in the fourth quarter to give the Shamrocks a 38-13 advantage. However, a pair of fumbles and a blocked punt on their own 6-yard line allowed Gahanna to creep back into the game.
"There were some things that I liked about that game and some things that I didn't," Crabtree said. "I liked going up 38-13, but I didn't like the mistakes after that.
"That's one of the ongoing things with a team. You always are looking to improve and I think there are a lot of things we can do as coaches to put our kids in the right places."
Moussa Diallo led the Coffman ground game with 93 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries, while Mike Drennen added 48 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries and caught six passes for 55 yards.
Quarterback Ethan Brown was 10-for-16 passing for 100 yards and also rushed for 25 yards on six carries.
"They have an established staff and they know what to do," Gecewich said. "They have some explosive players like Diallo and Drennen and their average players are really disciplined. They really have a solid football team."