With the way the schedule works out, Blanchester is still in a position to earn a share of the SBAAC National Division title.
The Wildcats lost for the first time in its last 16 National Division games last Friday to Bethel-Tate 29-16. The Tigers also were the last team to beat the Wildcats, 22-15 on Sept. 29, 2017.
So the ‘Cats are 2-1 and trail league unbeatens Bethel-Tate and Fayetteville by one game in the standings.
BHS has FHS this week then the Rockets and Tigers tangle in Week 6. A Blan win this week and a Fayetteville win next week means a three-way tie at 4-1, assuming Bethel-Tate defeats Williamsburg this week.
BHS coach Jon Mulvihill isn’t looking down the road. He said simply, “We need to get better.”
Mulvihill lamented the Wildcats’ lack of execution in its loss to Bethel-Tate last week. “I like the effort. The boys played hard, they just did not execute very well,” he said.
The Rockets this week visit Barbour Memorial Field for a 7 p.m. Friday kickoff.
“Fayetteville has some big kids, some fast kid and some really good football players,” Mulvihill said. “They can spread you out and take shots down the field with (Jayden) Bradshaw and Austin Attinger. Or they can get in a fullhouse backfield with an unbalanced line and run it down your throat.”
Levi Wiederhold, the FHS signal-caller, has passed for 805 yards and 12 touchdowns while running for five more scores.
On defense, Mulvihill said the Rockets front line with Drew Hendrix at nose, and Blake Coffman and Hunter Jester at ends presents a formidable challenge for the BHS offense.
On special teams, the ‘Cats coach said the Rockets have several dangerous kick returners.
The Blanchester kicking game, however, is in good hands with Bryan Bandow and Bryce Sipple handling the duties of the graduated Jasper Damewood.
“Honestly, with losing Damewood to graduation, I really thought we would struggle with all phases of kicking,” Mulvihill admitted. “Bryan Bandow has stepped in nicely with the extra point and Bryce Sipple has done a really good job of punting for us.”