Back-to-back losses have the members of the Grandview Heights High School football team looking in the mirror, searching for ways to get back on track.
The Division VI Bobcats dropped consecutive games against teams from bigger schools after winning their first five contests. They lost to Division II Whitehall 46-13 on Sept. 28 and Division IV London 42-0 on Oct. 5 in a pair of MSL-Ohio Division games at home.
Whitehall is 6-1 and London is 7-0, while the five teams the Bobcats defeated are a combined 12-23.
"Whitehall and London were both pretty good, but we have work to do," said coach Jason Peters, whose team is 5-2 overall and 1-2 in the MSL-Ohio. "It's not about who we play, it's about us. There are some things we have to get better at, and that's what we're going to do."
The Bobcats have a chance to show they are getting better when they visit Liberty Union on Friday, Oct. 12, for a league contest. Under first-year coach Daniel Shirey, the Lions are 1-6 overall and 1-2 in the MSL-Ohio after losing to Whitehall 46-6 on Oct. 5.
"I think (Shirey) spent some time there with (former coach) Bryan Johnson, (who left to coach Westerville North)," Peters said. "Looking at what they are doing offensively and defensively on film, it looks similar to what they have done in the past."
In the Lions' loss to Whitehall, quarterback Caleb Shook was 9-for-18 passing for 174 yards and one touchdown but Liberty Union was held to just three yards rushing. Wyatt Sims had five receptions for 95 yards, and Jaidon Billingsley added three catches for 77 yards and one score.
"(The Lions') record doesn't show how tough they are," senior running back/defensive lineman Hudson Jump said. "We have to be prepared. We can play well in first half, but have been falling off in the second half. We have to figure that out if we're going to go where we want to go. We can't lose any more if we're going to make the playoffs."
The Bobcats trailed 14-0 at halftime against London, but a 21-point third quarter by the Red Raiders blew the game open.
A week earlier against Whitehall, a 22-point fourth quarter was the deciding factor.
"I thought we hung pretty well in the first half, but our biggest issue has been having enough depth to continue that into the third and fourth quarters," senior two-way lineman Jack Wallace said. "(Whitehall and London) are bigger (schools) than us so they could sub players in and out a lot more. It's not an excuse, it's just a reality for a school our size. We need a consistent effort in both the first and second halves."
Darreion Davis led the Bobcats in rushing with 13 yards on six carries. Quarterback Kyle Casey was 5-for-9 passing for 47 yards and one interception.
"We have things we have to get better at," Peters said. "Whether you win or lose, you look at the film and try to get your kids better and get ready for next week.
"That's where we are now. We have to get better if we are going to put ourselves back in the win column."