Dublin Jerome at Marysville: Celtics, Monarchs offer different challenges for defenses

FRANK DIRENNA
fdirenna@thisweeknews.com
Dublin Jerome's Preston Everhart gets the tip of the ball over the goal line for a touchdown against Thomas Worthington on Sept. 4. The Celtics won 56-21.

Dublin Jerome football coach Bob Gecewich and Marysville coach Brent Johnson expect a competitive race in the new-look OCC-Cardinal Division.

The teams will meet Friday, Sept. 11, at Marysville in what should be a test for both squads.

Jerome opened league play with a 56-21 win over visiting Thomas Worthington on Sept. 4 to improve to 1-1, while Marysville fell to 1-1 with a 31-28 league-opening loss at Hilliard Darby the same night.

The Celtics lead the series 3-1, with the last meeting a 20-14 Jerome victory in 2011.

“There’s no weeks off (in this league),” Gecewich said. “They’re all really good and we still have a bunch of different styles of football the next couple of weeks. Marysville is going to be more wing-T-based and (Olentangy) Berlin is going to throw for (a lot) of yards.

“Olentangy does a little bit of everything, and then Darby is power-running option. It’s going to be a challenge week in and week out, and this week’s challenge is trying to find a way to match their physicality.”

After facing Darby’s triple-option ground attack, Marysville must now prepare for Jerome’s spread offense.

Ryan Miller completed 17 of 20 passes for 228 yards and two touchdowns to help lead the Celtics past Thomas.

Carter Barco had six catches for 109 yards and two scores, and Preston Everhart rushed for 92 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries.

“We have a big test against Jerome,” Johnson said. “They’re a little more open (than Darby). It’s still going to be a physical game, but it’s two different styles going at each other and more like (Hilliard) Bradley for us (in Week 1).

“Their quarterback is really good. They have a quick back (in Everhart). Defensively, they give you a lot of different looks. We have to really dial in on just who we are and do it our way.”

Marysville rallied from a 24-7 deficit to take a 28-24 lead against Darby in the fourth quarter before a Monarchs fumble led to a game-winning 11-yard touchdown run by the Panthers’ Connor Jones with 19 seconds remaining.

Ryan Kern rushed for 131 yards and two touchdowns and Gabe Powers added 100 yards and a score to lead the Monarchs. Powers, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound junior, is an Ohio State recruit at linebacker.

“They’re monstrous, they’re huge,” Gecewich said. “They have multiple scholarship players and they trained all summer and spring. They’re good. They’re going to pound you and they’re going to wear on you. They’re extremely physical and we’re still learning to play at a varsity level.”

Marysville also features senior defensive end Zach McMinn, who transferred from Jerome before his junior year.

“We have to clean up our mistakes,” Johnson said. “We can’t turn the ball over.”

fdirenna@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekFrank

WEEK 3

DUBLIN JEROME at MARYSVILLE

*When: 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11

*Last meeting: 2011, Jerome 20-14

*Jerome (1-1 overall, 1-0 in OCC-Cardinal) to date: Lost to Dublin Coffman 41-6; defeated Thomas Worthington 56-21

*Marysville (1-1 overall, 0-1 in OCC-Cardinal) to date: Def. Hilliard Bradley 17-0; lost to Hilliard Darby 31-28

*Top Celtics: Sopulu Aninweze (DL), Carter Barco (WR/DB), Addi Blair (LB), Noah Dorsey (OL/DL), Preston Everhart (RB), Seth Martin (WR/DB), Sean McCarthy (OL/DL), Ryan Miller (QB/DB), Jack Soehner (LB) and Sammy Stoner (WR/DB)

*Top Monarchs: Ben Bickerstaff (OL/DL), Michael Cogossi (OL), Ryan Kern (RB/LB), Griffin Johnson (RB/DB), Aidan Lambert (RB/LB), Ethan Musel (QB/DB), Gabe Powers (RB/LB), Tanner Powers (RB/DB), Ashton Schmutz (QB/DB) and Erryl Will (RB/DL)