Friday Night Live: Division II regional quarterfinal previews

ThisWeek Sports Staff
ThisWeekSPORTS.com
Quarterback Jacob Moeller and Olentangy Berlin play at Westerville South on Friday, Oct. 23, in a Division II, Region 7 quarterfinal.
Quarterback Peter Pedrozo has led Westerville South to a Division II, Region 7 quarterfinal.

Olentangy Berlin at Westerville South

Westerville South plays host to Olentangy Berlin on Friday, Oct. 23, in a Division II, Region 7 quarterfinal that will match two of the area’s most prolific quarterbacks.

The third-seeded Wildcats are led by Peter Pedrozo, who has passed for 2,044 yards with 25 touchdowns and two interceptions.

Meanwhile, the 11th-seeded Bears are guided by Jacob Moeller, who has passed for 2,471 yards with 22 touchdowns and eight interceptions.

“Their quarterback is outstanding,” South coach Matthew Christ said. “He spins the ball really well. On paper, it looks like two pretty good offenses clashing together. Defensively, it’s a great opportunity to step up and show that we can match the offense as an elite level.”

The winner will face second-seeded Massillon Washington or seventh-seeded North Canton Hoover in a regional semifinal Oct. 30 at the home field of the higher seed.

South advanced with a 56-28 win over visiting Watkins Memorial in a second-round game Oct. 16 as Pedrozo completed 13 of 17 passes for 378 yards with five touchdowns.

Brandon Armstrong rushed for 118 yards and two touchdowns on eight carries, while Kaden Saunders (2 touchdowns) and Javi’er Wills (1 touchdown) each had three receptions for 111 yards. 

Matthew Bame added four catches for 103 yards and a score as the Wildcats amassed 613 total yards.

“We’ve seen similar offenses before, but these kids are special,” said Berlin coach Mark Nori, whose program is in its third season. “They have a kid (Saunders) going to Penn State. The quarterback is really special. They’re a pretty athletic bunch. Whereas some teams you see have one or two guys in those spots, these guys are pretty good at many positions. It’s going to be a challenge for us.”

Berlin held off sixth-seeded and previously unbeaten Wooster 48-40 on Oct. 16 behind Moeller, who completed 23 of 38 passes for 366 yards and three touchdowns. 

The Bears took advantage of three Wooster turnovers in the first 10 minutes to go ahead 20-0 after one quarter, and also led 27-6 at halftime and 41-25 entering the fourth quarter. 

Ethan Lee recovered an onside kick attempt to seal the win after the Generals scored to make it 48-40 with under a minute remaining.

Aidan Loeffler (7 catches, 130 yards), Bennett Lawrence (7 catches, 95 yards) and Ryan Horstman (2 catches, 55 yards) were Moeller’s top targets and each had one touchdown reception.

—Frank DiRenna

OLENTANGY BERLIN at WESTERVILLE SOUTH

•When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23

•Last meeting: First meeting

•Berlin (5-3) to date: Lost to Olentangy Liberty 35-21; lost to Olentangy 45-33; defeated Hilliard Darby 48-41; def. Dublin Jerome 38-27; lost to Marysville 28-0; def. Thomas Worthington 28-21; def. Whitehall 47-7; def. Wooster 48-40 

•South (6-0) to date: Def. Dublin Scioto 42-28; def. Big Walnut 50-41; def. Westerville North 32-28; def. Delaware 59-20; def. Canal Winchester 42-24; def. Watkins Memorial 56-28

•Top Bears: Antonio Alonso (OL/DL), Jon Harder (OL/DL), Bennett Lawrence (WR/LB), Ethan Lee (RB/LB), Aiden Loeffler (WR/DB), Jacob Moeller (QB), Colin Pethtel (WR/DB), Justin Radar (WR/DB), Nick Tiberio (RB/LB) and Cole Troyer (OL/DL)

•Top Wildcats: Brandon Armstrong (RB/DB), Matthew Bame (WR/K), Jack Bates (LB), Nadir Carpenter (OL/DL), Jesse DeVore (WR/DB), Khali Horton-Campbell (LB), Tyler O'Reilly (OL/DL), Peter Pedrozo (QB), Kaden Saunders (WR/DB) and Javi’er Wills (WR/DB)

Terrique Gray and Worthington Kilbourne visit Olentangy on Friday, Oct. 23, for a Division II, Region 7 quarterfinal.

Worthington Kilbourne at Olentangy

Coming off back-to-back wins against 21st-seeded Marion Harding and fifth-seeded Uniontown Green in the Division II, Region 7 playoffs, 12th-seeded Worthington Kilbourne will face its toughest postseason test yet when it visits fourth-seeded Olentangy in a regional quarterfinal Friday, Oct. 23. 

Olentangy improved to 5-2 by defeating 13th-seeded Licking Heights 47-0 on Oct. 16 following a first-round bye, while Kilbourne is 5-3 after its 30-27 victory at Green the same night.

“They’ve won two playoff games, so they’re probably playing with a ton of confidence,” Olentangy coach Mark Solis said. “They’ve gotten better, you can see it on tape, so I think there’s a lot of enthusiasm there.

“Certainly it’s going to be a challenge for us. We’re just glad we still have the opportunity to keep playing amid the COVID situation, and we’ll see what we can do this week.”

The winner will face top-seeded Massillon Perry or eighth-seeded Dublin Scioto in a regional semifinal Oct. 30 at the home field of the higher seed. 

Kilbourne quarterback Mitchell Tomasek has completed 86 of 152 passes for 1,444 yards with 17 touchdowns and four interceptions. He also has rushed 20 times for 85 yards for an offense that is averaging 27 points. 

Cayden Dougherty has caught 38 passes for 789 yards and 10 touchdowns, and Terrique Gray has carried 76 times for 495 yards and five scores and caught seven passes for 86 yards and another score. 

Olentangy is averaging 28.9 points while allowing just 14.9 per game, and the Braves scored four touchdowns in the first quarter against Licking Heights to take control of the game. Two turnovers in the quarter by the Hornets led to Olentangy scoring drives of 14 and 12 yards. 

On the season, quarterback Kaden Doup has completed 89 of 120 passes for 1,137 yards with nine touchdowns and four interceptions and has run 60 times for 223 yards and four scores. 

Against Licking Heights, Doup had one of the Braves’ three rushing touchdowns in the first quarter and he also threw for three scores.

Landon Johnson has carried 58 times for 364 yards and six touchdowns and has six receptions for 105 yards and a score. Caleb Gossett has caught 23 passes for 333 yards and three touchdowns and rushed 20 times for 100 yards. 

“They’re very tough and very physical,” Kilbourne coach Mike Edwards said. “Obviously, they’re an extremely successful football program as long as I can remember.

“This is what playoff football is about. We’re going to go in there, we’re going to focus on ourselves, we’re going to do what we do, we’re going to have confidence, we’re going to play as a family and put ourselves in a position to win a big football game.” 

—Stephen Borgna

WORTHINGTON KILBOURNE at OLENTANGY

•When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23 

•Kilbourne (5-3) to date: Defeated Canal Winchester 33-14; lost to Dublin Scioto 21-13; def. Delaware 31-17; lost to Big Walnut 31-0; def. Franklin Heights 46-26; lost to Westerville North 22-21; def. Marion Harding 42-21; def. Uniontown-Green 30-27

•Olentangy (5-2) to date: Def. Olentangy Orange 7-3; def. Olentangy Berlin 45-33; def. Thomas Worthington 43-7; def. Hilliard Darby 37-6; lost to Dublin Jerome 27-16; lost to Marysville 28-7; def. Licking Heights 47-0 

•Top Wolves: Luke Brown (OL/DL), Cayden Dougherty (WR/DB), Mitchell Tomasek (QB/P), Terrique Gray (RB/LB), Spencer Parker-Gordon (WR/DB), Skylar Scott (WR/DB), Bryce Taylor (TE/LB) and Brian Wilson (RB/LB)

•Top Braves: Kaden Doup (QB), Jason Feasel (OL/DL), T.J. Gadd (OL/DL), Caleb Gossett (WR/DB), Ethan Hand (TE/DL), Landon Johnson (RB/LB), Daniel Kelly (WR/DB), Jace Middleton (WR/LB) and Toby Wilson (OL)  

Dublin Scioto at Massillon Perry

Coming off its seventh consecutive win, Dublin Scioto coach Karl Johnson believes his team might be facing its biggest challenge of the season.

The eighth-seeded Irish visit top-seeded Massillon Perry in a Division II, Region 7 quarterfinal Friday, Oct. 23.

“They have a great reputation (and) a hall of fame coach (Keith Wakefield) coaching them,” Johnson said. “They’re really good at what they do. They’re a wing-T offense and coach Wakefield is a legend of running the wing-T in Ohio. He’s done a great job at Perry.”

Scioto improved to 7-1 with a 31-13 win over ninth-seeded Big Walnut on Oct. 16, two weeks after the Irish defeated the Golden Eagles 15-14 on the final play of the game Oct. 2.

Perry — which improved to 7-0 with a 42-0 win over 17th-seeded Canal Winchester on Oct. 16 — was the Division II state runner-up in 2016 and 2015.

The Panthers played at the Division I level in 2017 before returning to Division II the following season.

The winner plays fourth-seeded Olentangy or 12th-seeded Worthington Kilbourne in a regional semifinal Oct. 30 at the home field of the higher seed.

In the rematch against Big Walnut, Ed Worthen rushed for 157 yards and three touchdowns on 26 carries and Amare Jenkins completed 11 of 22 passes for 131 yards.

The Irish took advantage of five turnovers by Big Walnut.

“I like our team,” Johnson said. “I like the way our kids are working together. We’re playing hard. We have some good athletes. Our lines on both sides are physical. We’ve gotten to this point not by pure luck. I’m looking forward to getting to Friday.”

Against Canal Winchester, Josh Lemon rushed for 211 yards and three touchdowns to lead Perry. Dom Vinas added 103 yards and three touchdowns on 12 carries.

The Panthers had a 372-58 advantage in total yards, with all 372 coming on the ground.

Scioto defeated Canal Winchester 28-21 on Sept. 18.

The teams have met once previously, with Perry winning 7-3 in a Division I, Region 3 quarterfinal in 2002.

—Frank DiRenna

DUBLIN SCIOTO at MASSILLON PERRY

•When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23

•Last meeting: 2002, Perry 7-3

•Scioto (7-1) to date: Lost to Westerville South 42-28; defeated Worthington Kilbourne 21-13; def. Canal Winchester 28-21; def. Franklin Heights 41-0; def. Delaware 28-0; def. Big Walnut 15-14: def. Mifflin 48-14; def. Big Walnut 31-13

•Massillon Perry (7-0) to date: Def. Uniontown Lake 21-3; def. Canton Central Catholic 28-0; def. North Canton Hoover 20-14; def. Canton McKinley 35-23; def. Massillon Jackson 14-13; def. Canton GlenOak 42-0; def. Canal Winchester 42-0

•Top Irish: Lesley Andoh (RB/DB), Tysen Boze (WR/DB), Amare Jenkins (QB), Xavier Lopes (WR/DB), Maxwell Martin-Lee (OL/DL), Mason Salvator (RB/LB/K/P), Koel Shaw (OL/DL), Joe Trent (TE/DL), Vernon Williams (TE/DL) and Ed Worthen (RB)

•Top Panthers: Davonte Armstrong (DB), Jovoni Lapanja (DB), Luke Laubacher (DB), Josh Lemon (RB), Samuel Thompson (DB), Dom Vinas (RB/LB), Hayden Vinas (QB) and Cayman Williams (LB)

Playoffs — Week 3

Friday, Oct. 23

Division I, Region 2

Olentangy Liberty (4) at Dublin Coffman (1)

Division I, Region 3

Hilliard Bradley (13) at Pickerington Central (1); New Albany (10) at Westerville Central (3)

Division II, Region 7

Olentangy Berlin (11) at Westerville South (3); Worthington Kilbourne (12) at Olentangy (4); Dublin Scioto (8) at Massillon Perry (1)

Division III, Region 11

Granville (8) at DeSales (1); Dresden Tri-Valley (10) at Hartley (2); Watterson (6) at Thornville Sheridan (3)

Saturday, Oct. 24

Division V, Region 19

Harvest Prep (5) at Columbus Academy (4); Ready (6) at Wheelersburg (3)

Division VI, Region 23

Africentric (8) at Beverly Fort Frye (1)