Despite a noticeable limp, Clinton-Massie running back Christian Poynter finished last week’s 28-7 win over Wyoming with 64 yards and a high-stepping touchdown.
Though the score was never out of hand last week, the Cowboys never seemed to truly threaten the Falcons. So why not rest Poynter, who spent the week leading up to the game on the sideline rehabbing his injury.
“In hindsight, I’m kinda glad he was able to play,” Massie head coach Dan McSurley said. “I think it helped him. This week he looks good. I mean, he should be back to normal. We’re expecting him fully healthy.”
Clinton-Massie will face John Glenn 7:30 p.m. Friday at Hilliard Darby High School in an OHSAA Division IV state semifinal game.
In the other state semifinal, unbeaten Steubenville (13-0) meets unbeaten Shelby (13-0).
The semifinal winners will play Dec. 2 at the Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. Kickoff time will be set Saturday.
A fully healthy Poynter won’t change the Massie game-plan but it will give the Falcons another fresh set of legs to pound the Little Muskies defense.
“The guys in the backfield, I mean Christian and Grant (Rudy) are great backs, but no matter who’s back there, our offense is still going to function,” said lineman Spencer Voss. “Any one who goes back there, we have a lot of capable guys who can put points on the board.”
Rudy dressed but did not play last week against Wyoming.
But whether it’s Poynter, Rudy, Weston Trampler, Tyler Beam, Daulton Wolfe, Luke Richardson or Cody Collingham, the Falcons will continue to have success rushing the football. That the numbers don’t drop much regardless of who carries the ball is a testament to the offensive line.
The backs who aren’t carrying the ball and the wide receivers are also key blockers in the CMHS running scheme.
Linemen Voss, Jacob Treisch, Davis Wulf, Matt Phillips and Spencer Branham along with tight end Seth Schmidt have been consistently opening holes during the Falcons 12-1 season.
That may change a bit this week, though, as McSurley said Wulf was questionable. If so, senior Sam Brothers will go both ways.
“Sam played left tackle all last season,” McSurley said. “He’s a senior and he’s just going to have to step up.”
• Parker Zachrich is the grandson of Wilmington’s Butch and Dollie Peelle. Parker is the son of Tracey Peele Zachrich, a 1988 graduate of Wilmington High School, and nephew of Carrie Peelle Zeigler.
Zachrich, a junior cornerback for John Glenn, broke up a potential touchdown pass in the end of John Glenn’s 33-27 win over Licking Valley in a regional semifinal game a couple week’s ago.
Zachrich, listed at 5-11, 145 in the program wears No. 4 for the Little Muskies. He was in on 60 tackles this season for JG and led the team with 8 pass break-ups.
• Clinton-Massie and Columbus Bishop Hartley will play a home and away series beginning next season. According Bishop Hartley football Twitter, the contract has been signed.
The teams will meet in Week 5 at Clinton-Massie in 2018 and in Week 5 at Bishop Hartley in 2019.
The Hawks were the No. 3 seed in Division III Region 11 this season. They lost to Tri-Valley – champions of John Glenn’s Muskingum Valley League – 13-9 in last week’s Region 11 title game.
Hartley defeated Chillicothe 44-7 this season. Chillicothe and Clinton-Massie had a close and heated football rivalry while the two were members of the South Central Ohio League.
Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, via email firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @wnjsports
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