Week 3 Preview: Waynesville at Blanchester


By Mark Huber - mhuber@wnewsj.com



Blanchester’s Dustin Trace goes up for an acrobatic catch during the season opener against Paint Valley.

Blanchester’s Dustin Trace goes up for an acrobatic catch during the season opener against Paint Valley.


April Garrett | News Journal

Waynesville has dominated the previous two meetings with Blanchester.

The Spartans defeated the Wildcats 43-14 in 2019 and 20-8 in 2018.

The two teams did not play last season because of the pandemic but renew the rivalry Friday night at Barbour Memorial Field. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

This will be the first home game of the season for Blanchester, having traveled to Bainbridge in Week 1 and to Richwood in Week 2.

“It will be nice to not have to travel. I’m hoping we bring more energy to this game than the previous two,” coach Jon Mulvihill said.

Blanchester is 0-2. Waynesville is 2-0 with wins over Bethel (24-2) and Greeneview (17-3).

Blaise Sizer is a solid passer at QB. He’s completed 21 of 35 for 325 yards and two touchdowns. Jake Duncan is the top receiver with an 8-137-1 receiving line.

The Spartans like to run the ball with Clellon Tamme going for 119 yards and two scores through two weeks.

“Waynesville has some good skill position players,” Mulvihill said. “Their QB is a nice athlete.”

On defense, Zach Turner has been in on 26 tackles while Matt Wilkerson has been part of 25 tackles. Wilkerson has five sacks.

“Their defense is always tough,” Mulvihill said. “This year they seem to be very good at running to the football, much like the defense we faced last week.”

The special teams for the Spartans can be a game-changer.

“Somehow Waynesville always has a very good kicker, this year is no different,” said Mulvihill. “He has the ability to hit long field goals and to kick touchbacks on kickoffs.”

Blanchester has not been in a position to win either of its first two games. Last week, the game with North Union was called at halftime. BHS lost 40-0. Mulvihill said the defense is simply not what it needs to be for the Wildcats to get on the right side of the W-L column. The offense needs to play with fewer mistakes.

“I have to do a better job at explaining what we’re trying to do, why we’re doing it, and then how to make adjustments,” the BHS coach said. “So far, my defense has been sub-par. We have to change what we’re doing. Week one, we had guys in positions to make plays. Week two, we couldn’t get lined up before they snapped the ball and it cost us a number of big plays. The plan this week defensively is to simplify, play fast, be aggressive. Offensively, we have to eliminate mental mistakes. Last week we had one mistake on multiple plays that took the opportunity for a good play away. If we clean up the little things, we will be much more competitive.”

Blanchester’s Dustin Trace goes up for an acrobatic catch during the season opener against Paint Valley.
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2021/09/web1_FB1_BL2dustintrace0819ag.jpgBlanchester’s Dustin Trace goes up for an acrobatic catch during the season opener against Paint Valley. April Garrett | News Journal

By Mark Huber

mhuber@wnewsj.com

Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, via email mhuber@wnewsj.com or on Twitter @wnjsports

Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, via email mhuber@wnewsj.com or on Twitter @wnjsports