The Olentangy Orange football team is 2-0 and its Week 3 opponent, Pickerington North, is an inverse 0-2, but neither coach is focused on records heading into their matchup Friday, Sept. 13, at Orange.
The Panthers' losses have come against two Division I playoff qualifiers a year ago in Olentangy Liberty (31-19 on Aug. 30) and Clayton Northmont (37-17 on Sept. 6), but Orange coach Zebb Schroeder hasn't forgotten his team's 45-14 drubbing at the hands of North last season.
"At this point in the season, I don't put a lot of stock in (records)," Schroeder said. "(The Panthers are) extremely talented and they handled us last year. This is a big week for us."
Against Northmont, running back Idris Lawrence led the Panthers with 98 yards rushing and one touchdown on 29 carries and had seven receptions for 47 yards. Quarterback Dom Myers was 16-for-31 passing for 213 yards but threw five interceptions. Myers added 22 yards rushing and one touchdowns on 11 carries and Chad Scott had three catches for 42 yards.
"The biggest thing is that we have played two really good teams and we have been right there," North coach Nate Hillerich said. "We were tied with Liberty (at 7) at the half and had our chances to take the lead against Northmont.
"We see signs that we can be a really good football team. We know we have the potential and we can be good. We have to eliminate the mistakes, turnovers and penalties and big plays defensively."
Orange quarterback Spencer Hawkins was 17-for-31 passing for 185 yards and rushed 14 times for 43 yards in a 17-14 win over Hilliard Bradley on Sept. 6.
Linebacker Eli Payne recovered a Bradley fumble on the Jaguars' 30-yard line with 5 minutes, 34 seconds left to set up a 30-yard field goal by Jack Behre that gave the Pioneers a 17-7 lead.
After Bradley scored to make it 17-14, Hawkins had a 1-yard run on fourth-and-1 from the Jaguars' 37 with 15 seconds left to seal the win.
Also for the Pioneers, Zane Lattig had eight receptions for 68 yards and Sam Wyne had three catches for 52 yards, including a 33-yard touchdown.
"We can be proud of what we have done, but we still have to fix fundamental errors and mental mistakes," Schroeder said.
"We try to make it about us improving and fitting a game plan to what they do best. It's going to be a big-time challenge for us."