Having been to the post-season 16 straight seasons, Clinton-Massie head coach Dan McSurley knows his way around Week 11 games and beyond.
His players do as well.
“These guys are kinda use to being in this situation, so we’re not going to let the hype of the tournament effect the preparation,” McSurley said.
Clinton-Massie (9-1) will host Jonathan Alder (8-2) 7:30 p.m. Friday at Frank M. Irelan Field. In a five-game march toward a state championship, it’s one and done for the loser while the winner advances to the next round.
The Falcons are tied for third in the state with the most consecutive Ohio High School Athletic Association playoff appearances at 16. Kettering Alter and Steubenville also have made the playoffs 16 straight season.
The Pioneers two losses have been to No. 1 seeds in this season’s playoffs – Bellville Clear Fork (28-14) in Div. IV Region 14 and Bellefontaine (19-6) in Div. III Region 11.
Clinton-Massie’s only loss was to Goshen, No. 4 in Division III Region 12.
The two teams met 11 times from 2002 to 2014, with the Falcons holding a 7-4 advantage.
Clinton-Massie and Jonathan Alder have a common opponent in 2017 – Springfield Shawnee. Massie beat the Braves 30-7 inweek 3. Jonathan Alder beat the Braves 35-21 in week 9.
Alder’s top offensive threat in a balanced attack is running back Jamie Dye, who has rushed for 1,412 yards and 15 touchdowns on 249 attempts this season. The next runner for the Pioneers is Drew Myers who has gained 170 yards on the ground.
As a team, the Pioneers have rushed for 1,864 yards while passing for 1,685 yards.
The quarterback is Preston Eisnaugle, who is completing 64 percent of his passes (144 for 226) with 14 touchdowns and five interceptions.
Eisnaugle has two favorite targets. Drew Myers has 41 catches for 362 yards and three touchdowns. Dalton Potts caught 40 passes for 575 yards and five scores. Both players participated in 10 games.
Bryan Blacka played in seven games but caught 29 balls for 375 yards and five scores.
For Clinton-Massie, Christian Poynter ran the ball 152 times, gaining 1,188 yards and scoring 28 touchdowns. Grant Rudy had seven touchdowns on the ground while running for 557 yards. Cody Collingham had 684 yards on 73 attempts.
Corey Stulz completed 15 passes for 531 yards and eight scores. He had two interceptions.
Luck Richardson caught 12 of those passes for 470 yards and all eight scores.
Derick Carlisle had 61 extra points and four field goals this season.
On defense, Trey Uetrecht had 67 tackles and Tyler Beam totaled 63 to pace the Falcons. Griffin Laake had 52 tackles and three pass interceptions.
Thomas Myers led the way with eight quarterback sacks while Weston Trampler had six and Clayton Sheeley had five. Richardson had a team-high seven interceptions.
Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, via email email@example.com or on Twitter @wnjsports