Clinton-Massie is currently fifth in the Division IV Region 16 Harbin ratings.
With 16 teams in each of the OHSAA’s 28 regions going to the playoffs, the Falcons would seem to be headed to a Week 11 game.
With that in mind, head coach Dan McSurley knows his team can make a lengthy post-season run.
If it stays healthy.
Last season, McSurley laments, the Falcons struggled with that and lost in the Region 16 championship game.
“Keeping all of our players available and healthy is going to be the key for the next several weeks,” McSurley said. “Last season we were not able to do that and bowed out early in the playoffs, losing to Wyoming in the regional finals.”
The Falcons will face Batavia Friday night at Holman Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Clinton-Massie is 5-1 overall and 2-0 in the division. Batavia is 1-5 overall and 0-2 in conference play.
The Bulldogs have been outscored 15 to 103 in two league games. They lost 82-0 to Bethel-Tate in Week 4.
Massie has outscored Batavia 244-14 in four meetings since the Falcons joined the SBAAC American Division.
For a second straight year, the Falcons were supremely challenged by Western Brown. Last week, it was Massie 42-35. Last season, 86-54.
“Western Brown challenged us as players and coaches in our preparation,” said McSurley. “We held them down to below their average of 40 points, which we ended up needing to do to win the game.”
While Carson Vanhoose (85-754) has been the leading ball carrier, Colton Trampler (56-355) and Carter Frank (52-378) have been steady, if not spectacular at times.
Trampler (38) leads the defense in tackles with Kody Zantene (35), Braden Rolf (32), Nathan Wildermuth (23), Grant Moorman (22) and Leyton Bell (20) not far behind.
Kody Zantene has three interceptions.
CM is averaging 321 yards per game on the ground and 39 points per game this season.
The defense, suspect at best a year ago, is back on track allowing 15 points and 242 yards per game.
“I think right now our team has become very seasoned,” McSurley said. “I believe we’ve grown with the level of competition that we have played.”