Figuring out how best to take advantage of the athleticism and talent of Rashaun Broomfield is one of the puzzle pieces that seems to have come together for the Whetstone football team this season.
Utilized mostly in the defensive backfield as a freshman and as a wide receiver and cornerback as a sophomore, Broomfield showed enough all-around skill to persuade the Braves to move him to quarterback last fall.
After rushing for 741 yards and 11 touchdowns and throwing for 548 yards and six touchdowns, the 6-foot, 170-pound senior has moved back to more of a playmaking role without the ball this season because of the continued improvement of junior quarterback Alex Hurd.
Lining up at running back and wide receiver, Broomfield rushed for 239 yards and three touchdowns on 14 carries and had four catches for 106 yards and three scores in a 55-20 victory over Briggs on Sept. 6.
"It's not really been that much of a transition from quarterback because I've been mostly at wide receiver, cornerback and safety my entire life," Broomfield said. "I haven't played quarterback much until I got to high school. I worked on it more my sophomore year and then playing it my junior year."
With Broomfield serving as their No. 1 weapon on offense, the Braves were 1-2 before opening City League-North Division action Sept. 23 at Linden-McKinley. The game originally was scheduled for Sept. 20 but was postponed because of bad weather.
Whetstone will try to snap a three-game losing streak against Northland when it visits the Vikings on Friday, Sept. 27.
Northland was 1-3 after opening league action Sept. 20 with a 25-0 win at Mifflin, which dropped to 0-4.
Linden was 0-3 heading into its matchup against the Braves, who lost non-league games to Watkins Memorial (38-19 on Aug. 30) and South (50-21 on Sept. 13) and have another non-league game Oct. 18 at Northwood.
Broomfield, who has been central to the Braves' improved offense this season, comes from a family of football fanatics.
His brother Allen was a starting defensive back in 2003 when Brookhaven reached a Division II state semifinal, and his brother Ramone, a 2013 Brookhaven graduate and defensive back, helped the Bearcats make the playoffs in 2011.
He has two other brothers who also played for Brookhaven.
"I grew up playing football," Broomfield said. "That's all me and my brothers used to do was go outside in the back yard and play football, but I didn't start getting into the details and technique until my eighth-grade year."
Northland, which has beaten Whetstone eight of the last 10 seasons, was outscored 169-7 in its first three games but has won at least a share of the past two City-North titles.
Coach Tom Jones has been pleased with the progress his team has been making on offense with Broomfield and Hurd leading the way.
Against South, Hurd threw two touchdowns to Broomfield and one to Felix Prewitt.
"It's a new system, a more aggressive system," Jones said. "It attacks the defense in more dynamic ways and puts defenses in a catch-22."
Tennis team preps for City title match
With a 5-0 victory over Northland on Sept. 11, the girls tennis team finished 4-0 in the City-North to advance to its 15th City championship match in 16 seasons, including its 10th in a row.
The Braves will play a team to be determined for the title Monday, Sept. 30.
Whetstone, which beat the Hilliard Davidson B team 4-1 on Sept. 19, is 7-3 overall.
The Braves, who competed in the City League coaches tournament Sept. 23 and 25, earned 3-2 victories over Hilliard Darby on Sept. 16 and Thomas Worthington on Sept. 19.
Coach Bucky Walters was excited about the opportunity to play the OCC teams as well as Worthington Christian, which the Braves lost to 3-2 on Sept. 12.
Sophomore Stella Thompson has been at first singles, with sophomore Alysia Swinehart at second singles and junior Maizy Pratt at third singles.
Seniors Grace Djaodo and Anita Tamang have competed at first doubles and senior Emma McAdams and sophomore Izzy Park have been at second doubles.
"It's been real up and down, but they've got a good work ethic," Walters said. "They get along."
Golfers to compete in City tourney
The boys golf team is set to compete in the City League tournament Thursday, Sept. 26, at Airport.
After shooting a 190 to beat Walnut Ridge (201) and Centennial (260) on Sept. 19 at Raymond Memorial, the Braves were 15-0 overall and 13-0 in the City League.
On Sept. 16 at Airport, Whetstone beat Tree of Life 197-256 as senior Spencer Ball shot 42 to earn medalist honors.
The next day against West at Raymond Memorial, senior Nairan Normand was medalist with a 41 as the Braves won 179-260.
One of the Braves' best performances this season came Sept. 12 at Airport when they beat Mifflin 166-257 as Ball was medalist with a 38.
Below are the coming schedules for the Whetstone cross country, boys golf, boys soccer, girls soccer, girls tennis and girls volleyball teams:
Sept. 28 -- Erin Nance Fall Distance Classic at London Country Club
Sept. 26 -- City tournament at Airport
Oct. 2 -- Division I sectional at Turnberry. Top four teams and top four individuals not on qualifying teams advance to district Oct. 8 at Apple Valley.
*Sept. 26 -- Home vs. Centennial
*Oct. 1 -- At International
Sept. 26 -- At Westerville South
Sept. 30 -- At Lakewood
*Oct. 1 -- At West
Sept. 30 -- City championship at TBA
*Sept. 26 -- Home vs. International. The Braves beat the Lions 25-7, 25-11, 25-1 on Sept. 3.
Sept. 28 -- At Groveport
*Oct. 1 -- At Centennial. The Braves beat the Stars 25-15, 18-25, 25-17, 25-23 on Sept. 5.