Titans, Comets ready to renew gridiron rivalry
Thursday, November 08, 2012 3:53 PM
By Charlie Warnimont
Sentinel Sports Editor
OTTAWA - Ottawa-Glandorf is 3-0 in football playoff games played at Donnell Stadium in Findlay.That could be a good sign as the Titans prepare this week to face Genoa Area in a Division IV, Region 14 playoff game this Friday at Donnell Stadium. The kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
This will be the third time the Titans (11-0) and Comets (11-0) have met in the playoffs, with Genoa winning the first two meetings. Back in 2008, the Comets posted a 40-21 win over O-G at Bowling Green State University in the regional finals and in 2010 Genoa prevailed 7-6 on their home field in a regional quarterfinal contest. The winner of this semi-final advances to the regional finals to face the winner of the game between Columbus Bishop Hartley (11-0) and Richwood North Union (11-0).
The Titans advanced to the regional semi-finals with a 72-0 win over Lorain Clearview, while Genoa beat Columbus Bishop Ready 42-14.
"It's a familiar foe, but brand new teams," O-G coach Ken Schriner said. "We have faced them twice with them winning both games, the last time being in 2010 when they won 7-6. One thing that is strange, it's the same running back that they had in 2010, he was a sophomore at the time."
The two teams are similar in their attacks as they both like to run the football and use the pass when necessary.
The Comets top back is senior Kyle Nutter. Nutter rushed for 2,058 yards during the regular season and added 187 yards and a pair of touchdowns during the Comets regional quarterfinal win. During the regular season he scored 35 touchdowns. His younger brother, David Nutter, added 142 yards rushing in the teams playoff win. Jake Wojciechowski rushed for 660 yards in the regular season and Cody Downs just over 400 yards.
At quarterback for the Comets is Ryan Smoyer, who has thrown for over 3,032 yards and 25 scores. The Comets averaged over 50 points a game this season.
O-G's defense has yielded just 11.7 points a game this season and just over 233 yards a game. They are only allowing 98.5 yards a game rushing.
The Titan defense has been led by Logan Diemer with 77 tackles and Wyatt Karhoff with 77 tackles, 12 for losses, and six sacks. Matt Samuelson, 11 tackles for losses, and Cody Alt, nine tackles for losses, both have 68 tackles this season. Caleb Siefker and Tyler Zender both have three interceptions.
"Our defense is going to have to be sound to shut down the run," Schriner said. "They are a heavy run team. They are not a real throwing team, but they will surprise you with the pass over the top once you start loading up so we have to be careful with that. We are going to be challenged up front, do the things up front to shut down their running game or control it. It's not going to be easy. They are straight at you out of a wing-slot, Wing-T formation. They will run a lot of variations, dive, iso, off tackle power and they are very good at what they do. They try and have an answer for what you do defensively."
"Everything they do is forward. They are not a pass protection team. Their offensive and defensive lines are very aggressive and it is a lot of the same kids playing both ways," Schriner added.
The Titans offense is averaging 425.3 yards a game as they are rushing for 340 yards a game and scoring 46.3 points a game.
Senior Tristan Parker leads the Titans rushing attack with a school record 1,754 yards and 24 touchdowns. Caleb Siefker went over the 1,000 yard mark last Friday in the teams win over Clearview. He finished the night with 184 yards rushing and has 1,078 yards for the season and 17 scores. Shane Schroeder (357) and fullback Brad Racer (291) have contributed to the Titans rushing attack this season as well.
Besides being the Titans second leading rusher, Siefker has thrown for 872 yards this season and 14 scores.
"They are very aggressive defensively," Schriner said. "They show a lot of different fronts and they stunt up front. They are very aggressive. They are not going to sit back and read, they want to get off blocks, get into your backfield and make plays. Its a type of defense we have seen a number of times this year. Hopefully our offensive line can slow them down and we can find some seams and make some big plays. Their defensive backs play a lot of man coverage. We know where they, the defensive backs, are going to be if we decide to throw, hopefully we are able to do that."
The Comets only allow 11.5 ppg this season on defense as they have only posted one shutout.
"This is going to be a tough game," Schriner said. "These are two teams that are very similar in what they do. We have had some success at Findlay and we are the home team there so we are hoping to have another big crowd there. We need to come out and do the things we do well and hopefully that leads to good results in the end. It will be a challenge."