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Girls Junior Varsity Basketball, Girls Varsity Basketball · Reynoldsburg High School Girls Varsity Basketball beat Cleveland East Tech 74-21


Saturday, November 25, 2017

1:30 PM

Cleveland East Tech
AWAY
21

Reynoldsburg High School
HOME
74

Game Recap

Sophomore Kyria Walker led 4 Raiders in double figures garnering a game-high 19 points, including two triples, in the RHS whitewash of a very young Cleveland East Tech. Uju Ezeudu had 14, Destiny Fields 12, and Jalynda Salley 11.
Junior Bre Johnson played excellent floor games in both he Gary West victories.
The Raiders host powerhouse Mansfield Senior on Saturday afternoon at Summit Campus.

Box Scores

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4
Cleveland East Tech
3

10

4

4

Reynoldsburg
15

23

17

19


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Girls Junior Varsity Basketball, Girls Varsity Basketball · Reynoldsburg High School Girls Varsity Basketball beat Ashville Teays Valley 52-35


Friday, November 24, 2017

5:15 PM

Ashville Teays Valley
AWAY
35

Reynoldsburg High School
HOME
52

Game Recap

Rising junior, Uju Ezeudu, tossed in 19 points and added 10 rebounds in leading the Raiders to their first win of the season in the Gary West Memorial Tipoff Classic VI.
Destiny Fields added 10 points and Kyria Walker 7.

Box Scores

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4
Ashville Teays Valley
5

8

7

15

Reynoldsburg
16

6

14

17


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Multiple Teams · Wrestling first day of practice Nov. 10th


RHS wrestling hold the first  practice of the season on Nov. 10th after school . All athletes planing to wrestle will need to be present and have a physical/ completed final forms.


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Multiple Teams · Raiders finish 7-3 in 2017 after Senior Night win


Raiders Gales Box Score

REYNOLDSBURG – For the first time since 2001, the Raiders completed a football season undefeated at home. Despite finishing 5-0 on their field at the Livingston Avenue campus of Reynoldsburg High School (RHS), 7-3 overall, 3-2 in the vicious OCC-Ohio division, and 25th in the state of Ohio amongst Division 1 teams in terms of points, the Raiders were denied their third playoff berth since then and second in three years by the slimmest of margins. The Raiders got some help from across the state of Ohio, but not enough of it as factors outside of their control in Week 10 led to Hilliard Darby sneaking into the 8th and final playoff spot over the Raiders in heartbreaking fashion, abruptly ending the high school football careers of its 11 seniors.

But on Senior Night against Lancaster, where these 11 players were recognized prior to kickoff, the Raiders took care of their business to give the Class of 2018 a thrilling victory to end their memorable careers on a high note.

In his final game on Friday Oct. 27th, starting quarterback Justin Henry passed for 228 yards and accounted for four total touchdowns, including a 16-yard rushing touchdown with 11:08 to go for his final score for the Raiders (7-3, 3-2). Facing a 22-point deficit at that point, Lancaster would then go on a furious rally in the final eight minutes of regulation to make the contest a one-possession game. The Raiders defense eventually stopped the Gales at the Raiders 41 during a potential game-tying passing touchdown play on the final play of regulation, giving the Raiders a 42-34 victory in a memorable 2017 season finale.

“I felt bad for the seniors, because going into Friday night, we told them that we have to control what we can control,” Raiders head coach Buddy White said of being mathematically eliminated from playoff contention despite the win. “But we did. I thought we played very well; offensively we scored points like we said we needed to do, and our defense made some stops and got the ball back to the offense.”

ARTICLE COVER PHOTO:

Pregame Senior Night Photo. (Photo taken and provided by Tim Paris via www.topphotos.org.)

GAME RECAP:

The Gales received the opening kickoff and punted after going three and out, giving Henry and the Raiders the ball at their own 33. On the very first offensive play by the Raiders, Henry would complete a 67-yard touchdown pass to junior receiver Mershawn Rice to give the Raiders an early 7-0 lead. The Gales would take over at their own 45, and would answer with a 55-yard scoring drive in just under five minutes capped off by an 8-yard rushing touchdown to tie the game at 7-7 with 4:21 left in the opening quarter.

The Raiders would go three and out, while the Gales would hang on to the ball and use its dangerous ground attack to wear down the Raiders defense and rack up time of possession. They would face a 4th and 2 from the Raiders 31 to open the 2nd quarter, call timeout, and convert a first down with a short rush. Four plays later, the Gales would pass on 3rd and 6 and complete a 24-yard touchdown pass to give them a 13-7 lead over the Raiders with 9:47 left in the 2nd quarter to quiet the home crowd.

“I didn’t say a whole lot because we still knew what we had to do,” Raiders head coach Buddy White said of his message to the team after Lancaster’s go-ahead score. “I just reminded them that the offense needed to score points, and that we needed some stops from the defense. Then we obviously got back on track and started putting points on the board, and the defense gave us some stops. We wanted to make sure that we slowed [Lancaster] down and not let them dominate the game from the offensive side, and we did a good job of not letting them do that.”

Although the Raiders would go three and out on their next drive and despite a 23-yard rush by the Gales to start their ensuing drive, the Raiders defense would force a punt three plays later and take over at their own 35. Henry would the complete a 20-yard pass to sophomore receiver Shon Strickland, followed by his second touchdown pass of the night to Rice from 41 yards out with 5:41 left in the 2nd quarter to give the Raiders a 14-13 lead over the Gales.

“The blocking worked out perfectly for me and the outside was open, so I just took it and ran my fastest,” Rice said of his two long touchdown receptions from Henry and his big receiving night overall. “The game plan was to score touchdowns, and that’s what we came out and did. We had a good offensive game.”

Rice finished the night with 5 receptions for a game-high 148 receiving yards and 2 touchdown receptions from Henry.

“They really couldn’t really run with us and that’s what we tried to do,” Henry would say of his long touchdown passes and big plays in general after the game. “We caught them off guard during those two plays, and just let our athletes do what they do.”

The spark on offense then gave the defense some momentum.

Facing a 4th and 1 from the Raiders 44, the Raiders forced a fumble and senior Dez Cooper returned it 44 yards for a touchdown to extend the Raiders lead to 21-13 just over two minutes after Rice’s second touchdown reception. The Gales would respond on their next drive with a 46-yard rush on 3rd and short to give Lancaster a 1st and goal from the Raiders 10 with 2:13 left in the half. They would get to the 1-yard line, and Reynoldsburg called timeout with its defense facing 4th and goal from the 1 with 44.1 seconds left in the half. Junior linebacker Ke’Shun Moorer bursted through a hole in the Gales’ offensive line and tackled their running back short of the goal line, causing Lancaster to come up empty and preserving a 21-13 halftime lead for the Raiders.

“I just put trust in our line and everything worked out,” Moorer said of the goal line stand. “I saw a gap, filled it, and I got that tackle.”

Riding momentum going into the locker room, and just like the opening offensive play of the first half, the Raiders made a quick statement to start the second half.

Starting from his own 24, Henry would toss a reverse pass to senior Princeton Hoskins, who dodged a few tackles and ran 76 yards untouched into the end zone for a touchdown to extend the Raiders’ lead to 28-13 just 24 seconds into the 3rd quarter. The Gales would drive all the way to the Raiders 25 on their ensuing drive, but were again stopped on 4th and 1 by junior linebacker Jay Amburgey to force another turnover on downs. The Raiders would come up empty on this drive but stop the Gales on offense again, and Reynoldsburg would get the ball back at their own 21 with 4:23 left in the 3rd quarter.

Lancaster would be called for pass interference and Rice would catch an 11-yard pass from Henry, who would then throw a 52-yard touchdown pass to Strickland to extend the Raiders’ lead to 35-13 with 2:30 left in the 3rd quarter. Despite 28 unanswered points by the Raiders at this point, the Gales would respond with a 52-yard touchdown pass on 2nd and long with under a minute left in the 3rd quarter to cut the Raiders’ lead to 35-20 going into the 4th quarter and final 12 minutes of regulation to keep the game within reach.

A personal foul on Lancaster aided the Raiders offense on what ended up being an extremely critical scoring drive, and Henry would score his fourth and final touchdown of the night via a 16-yard insurance run into the end zone with 11:08 to go to extend the Raiders’ lead to 42-20. At this point, the home crowd was feeling good about its chances of witnessing the Raiders complete an undefeated regular-season home stand for the first time in 16 years.

Lancaster seemed to have other ideas, however. Considering the Gales scored exactly 42 points in each of its last two contests against the Raiders, including a multitude of scoring plays late in the 4th quarter and/or overtime of those two contests, the game was far from over.

“We tried to empty the bench a little bit and get some guys that hadn’t been playing in there,” coach White said of that moment in the game. “And all of a sudden, Lancaster didn’t quit playing.”

The Gales would respond through the air as opposed to on the ground, forcing pass interference penalties on the Raiders and capping their next drive with a 13-yard touchdown pass to cut the Raiders’ lead to 42-26 with 7:49 to go after a failed two-point conversion attempt. The Raiders would come up empty on offense after an incomplete pass thrown by Henry on 4th and short gave the Gales the ball back on their own 45 with 2:05 to go.

And then madness ensued in what ended up being a crazy sequence in the closing minutes of regulation.

The Gales would complete a 37-yard pass and rush for 8 yards to put the ball at the Raiders 10; this would force Reynoldsburg to use a timeout to slow Lancaster’s momentum and talk things over. Lancaster would find the end zone and complete the two-point conversion to get within 42-34 with 1:21 to go and with an inevitable onside kick to follow. They would actually recover the onside kick to set themselves up at the Raiders 49, but were eventually stopped on 4th down at the Raiders 31 after using their final timeout. One kneel would seal the deal for the Raiders.

But Lancaster still wasn’t done.

In stunning fashion, the Raiders fumbled the ball in what was supposed to be a victory formation to run out the clock, and Lancaster recovered the fumble to send a surge through the packed visitor crowd on the opposite end of the stadium. Down 42-34, the Gales would spike the ball at the Raiders 41 to set up a potential game-tying touchdown pass into the end zone assuming a successful two-point conversion. But the Raiders would finally prevail and stop Lancaster on the final play of the game, halting a furious 4th-quarter rally by the Gales and completing a perfect record at home (5-0) to end the 2017 season on a high note.

“We knew that [Lancaster was] in desperation mode and that they were going to try and pass the ball, which is something that they don’t normally want to do,” coach White said of the Gales’ comeback attempt. “The successful passes that they completed on us were when we were in run mode, and our guys got caught up in run mode. [Lancaster] kept on playing, and all of a sudden I looked up and it was 42-34. It got a lot easier for us knowing that they were going to pass, so we got after the quarterback to force some throws and the defense did what I expected them to do in that situation.”

“We didn’t anticipate that they would get the onside kick, as well as when we tried to take a knee and fumbled that. But still, we did what we had to do to win the game and we won the game. We had to count on other people to come through for us though, and it didn’t happen. And we have to quit putting ourselves in situations where we have to depend on other people to fight our battles.”

OLENTANGY FINISHED 7-3 AND MADE THE PLAYOFFS. GAHANNA-LINCOLN ALSO MADE IT DESPITE FINISHING 6-4. HOW DID THE RAIDERS MISS THE PLAYOFFS WITH A 7-3 RECORD?

Unfortunately, despite the wild and thrilling finish against Lancaster, finishing 7-3 was not enough for the Raiders in the Division 1 Region 3 playoff race. Reynoldsburg finished 9th and just outside of the eight-team playoff picture. Although the Raiders even beat both Olentangy (31-7 in Week 3) and Gahanna-Lincoln (21-14 in Week 7), the Braves and Lions both play in Division 1 Region 2, where they finished 5th and 6th respectively in their region and comfortably in their playoff picture. (If the Raiders played in Division 1 Region 2, where the Lions and Braves play, they actually would have finished 6th and would have qualified for a first-round playoff matchup at 3rd-ranked Olentangy Orange on Friday Nov. 3rd.)

IMG_8645

The Raiders beat Gahanna-Lincoln in Week 7 along with Olentangy in Week 3 (pictured above) by a score of 31-7. Dublin Coffman lost 31-14 to that same Olentangy team the following week. Three of these four teams mentioned qualified for the playoffs after Week 10; the Raiders were the one team left out.

Division 1 Region 3 was brutal in 2017, to say the least.

The Raiders and the eight other teams ranked above them in Division 1 Region 3 all finished in the Top 25 in the entire state of Ohio in terms of average points obtained by what are called Level 1 and Level 2 points that are calculated by the OHSAA. Level 1 points are awarded for simply winning games against teams, while Level 2 points are awarded for regular season wins acquired by those teams. (For example, the Raiders beat Olentangy and Gahanna-Lincoln as mentioned above for two wins worth of Level 1 points. Olentangy finished their season with 7 wins and Gahanna-Lincoln finished with 6 wins, giving the Raiders 13 wins worth of Level 2 points from these two games alone.)

Reynoldsburg and Hilliard Darby both finished with 7-3 records to give them both the same amount of Level 1 points, so their final rankings would therefore be decided on Level 2 points (i.e. combined wins by opponents that they beat on each of their corresponding schedules).

Let’s look at the records of teams that both Reynoldsburg and Hilliard Darby beat in the 2017 regular season.

REYNOLDSBURG (7-3)- St. Charles (1-9), Olentangy (7-3), Central Crossing (4-6), Westerville Central (4-6), Gahanna-Lincoln (6-4), Grove City (1-9), Lancaster (4-6).

HILLIARD DARBY (7-3)- Hilliard Davidson (5-5), Westerville South (4-6), Mount Vernon (4-6), Thomas Worthington (4-6), Worthington Kilbourne (3-7), Delaware Hayes (3-7), Dublin Scioto (5-5).

IMG_8492One-game forfeits each by Upper Arlington and St. Charles (both pictured above in their Week 1 contest) actually altered the Raiders’ path to the postseason.

WEEK 10 CHAOS: Coming into the final week of the regular season, five teams were fighting for the final two playoff spots in Division 1 Region 3; this included the Raiders and the Panthers of Hilliard Darby, who were ranked 9th and 10th respectively after Week 9. The Raiders even got some unanticipated help the day before Senior Night, as Upper Arlington had to forfeit a win against Central Crossing (who the Raiders beat 21-7 in Week 4) which gave the Raiders a boost in Level 2 points (though St. Charles also had to forfeit a Week 5 win, which hurt the Raiders’ Level 2 points).

And this was only the beginning of the madness.

Kettering Fairmont eliminated Springfield by winning a 7-3 low-scoring affair (shortly before the Raiders won against Lancaster) to claim the 7th playoff spot, while eventual top-seeded Centerville eliminated Beavercreek with a 26-0 victory to help the Raiders. Both Reynoldsburg and Hilliard Darby took care of their business in Week 10 to finish 7-3, but the Panthers got a lot more help from the aforementioned seven opponents above that they beat in the regular season. Three of these seven teams (that the Panthers beat earlier in the season) won in Week 10 to help Hilliard Darby; only one of the seven teams that the Raiders beat in the regular season won in Week 10. Even more unfortunate was the fact that this one win came from Olentangy against Westerville Central, as the Raiders already won against both of these teams in the regular season. Both teams played against each other in Week 10, so the Raiders were guaranteed help from this game regardless of which team won. (Though to be fair, Lancaster did lose to the Raiders on Senior Night in Week 10, which is an understandable way for the Raiders not to obtain Level 2 points.)

SO HOW DID HILLIARD DARBY WIN THE TIEBREAKER? Long story short, everything that could have gone the Panthers’ way in Week 10 went their way, and Hilliard Darby completed their impressive late-season surge with five straight wins while jumping the Raiders in the playoff rankings on the final night of the regular season. Opponents Hilliard Darby beat in the regular season finished the regular season with 28 combined wins, while opponents Reynoldsburg beat in the regular season finished with 27 combined wins. This 28-27 combined opponents’ wins margin gave the 8th and final playoff spot to the Panthers, while the Raiders were barely left out of the playoff picture and ranked 9th as a result.

IMG_8457The Raiders’ loss at New Albany may have happened in Week 1 (pictured above), but it proved to be costly after the dust settled around Ohio in Week 10.

Worth noting is the fact that New Albany, Pickerington North, and Pickerington Central each finished the regular season with 6, 8, and 9 wins respectively. Since the Raiders lost to all of these teams, these combined 23 wins were NOT factored into the Raiders 27 combined opponents’ win totals used for the above tiebreaker. For the sake of argument, had the Raiders even beat New Albany in Week 1 (which was a 2-point loss as opposed to the big losses to each of the two Pickerington teams), the Eagles would have finished with 5 wins and the lowest amount of wins of these three teams. However, that would have been 5 more wins worth of Level 2 points added onto the Raiders’ 27 total that they actually ended up with after Week 10. Reynoldsburg would have therefore won the above tiebreaker by a margin of 32-28 (in terms of combined opponents’ wins) over Hilliard Darby if the Raiders had won at New Albany in their Thursday Night Lights season opener on August 24th, 2017.

Raiders head coach Buddy White elaborated further on this when reflecting on the things that were in his team’s control this season, and the aforementioned factors in Week 10 that were not in his team’s control.

“We want to take it a step further next year, and our goal is going to leave no doubt,” White would go on to say. “We put our destiny in control of other teams, and they didn’t come through for us [in Week 10]. But I always have a saying that a successful season is when you win all of the games you’re supposed to win and half of those you’re not. There were probably four games we weren’t supposed to win; we weren’t supposed to beat Olentangy [31-7 in Week 3], no one could think of us beating Gahanna [21-14 in Week 7], but we did. The other two games were the two Pickeringtons [that were both losses].”

“The one game we were supposed to win that we didn’t was the New Albany game [15-13 loss in Week 1], and that’s the game that got us.”

The Raiders would have been in the playoffs as the 8th and final seed in the playoff picture in this case had the season opener at New Albany or even any one of the games at Pickerington North/Central gone their way, while Hilliard Darby would have been 9th. Instead, Hilliard Darby emerged into the playoff picture over the Raiders and extended their season to at least Week 11; they will travel to top-seeded Centerville on Friday Nov. 3rd in their Division 1 Region 3 playoff opener.

“We’ll definitely make sure we talk next year about controlling our own destiny, not having any down games, not losing games that we are supposed to win, and winning at least half the games that we are not supposed to win,” White would go on to say about the message to his team going forward and into next year. “That guarantees you at least an 8-2 record, and 8-2 would always get us in the playoffs. But we were 7-3 [this year]. We have also got to figure out a way to beat one if not both of those Pickeringtons, because those were the worst games we played this year. We had great weeks of practice, and when we got out there on the field, it seemed like the snowball started to roll downhill after the opening kickoff. It’s not like our team was not prepared at least physically, but maybe I need to look at the mental side a little bit more to prepare them [going forward]. But if we knock off at least one of the Pickeringtons, we won’t have any problems.”

WHERE DO THE RAIDERS GO FROM HERE?

To say that the Raiders are on the rise is an understatement.

The Class of 2018 won 20 total regular season games in the last three years, and most importantly, had a winning record in each of the last three seasons along with a postseason appearance in 2015. Although this season’s ending was arguably the most abrupt and heartbreaking of all of them, the expectations will be higher than ever going into the 2018 season both on and off the field.

Senior starting quarterback Justin Henry reflected on this after his final game.

“It definitely meant a lot for me knowing that my brother and my dad are both alumni of Reynoldsburg,” Henry said. “To go 7-3 and have a winning record like that meant a lot to me and the rest of the seniors on the team. We have a pretty small senior class, but we all knew what was at stake tonight and this season. We had a lot of people doubting us at the end of the season, and I feel like we proved a lot of people wrong. I’m really proud of the seniors and the whole team in general.”

“We’re trying to shift the culture in Reynoldsburg. We’ve had winning records the last three years. It’s good that the guys coming back know what’s expected now, and they have that winning mentality.”

Raiders head coach Buddy White also reflected on this, the abrupt ending to the football season, and the impact the Class of 2018 will have on the program going forward.

“I’ve become very close to some of those guys, and we have the type of relationship that I truly believe will stand the test of time,” White said. “I talked the team prior to the pregame meal about the abrupt ending to a football season. It was our last regular season game, and if things worked out, we would get into the playoffs. I told them how it hurts when the season ends, especially when you’ve been together for so long. You spend ten months with a bunch of kids from January to October, and then all of a sudden it just ends. I’ll see the seniors, help them get situated, help them with where they want to go to school [after graduation], and all of that.”

IMG_0200Senior Night took place on Friday Oct. 27th, 2017 before the Class of 2018 players would compete in what would be their final high school football game. But despite it being their last game, they will leave behind a positive legacy that will last forever in Reynoldsburg.

“We will see each other years from now and stay in touch, but the day-to-day contact is literally over and I’m really going to miss that about those guys,” White would go on to say. “They were very talented football players; they are kids that are going to be very successful once they leave RHS, and they are going to do things that are going to make the city of Reynoldsburg very proud because that’s the kind of kids they are. They are some excellent students in the classroom, and that’s mainly because the foundation and expectations have been set academically within the program. Last year’s class accomplished great things academically, and it set the stage for the future classes. This year’s class has definitely responded in the classroom as well.”

With the seniors leaving their mark on Reynoldsburg Football and with a lot of young and experienced talent returning for the Raiders next season, things are definitely trending heavily upwards in the Burg going into 2018.

“The expectations are going to be high [going into the offseason], and they should.” White would go on to say. “I am happy about us going 7-3 this year, considering that 15 of our starters were playing either JV or Freshmen Football last year. It wasn’t like we came back [in 2017] and had a loaded team; we had some good talent, but we didn’t have a lot of experience. That lack of experience showed in the New Albany game in our first game of the season. But as the season went on, they started playing some really good football. Now, a lot of those kids are going to be a year stronger, a year more mature, a year smarter, and the expectations are going to be high.”

IN CLOSING:

Thank you so much to all of you for your support of Reynoldsburg Raider Football during the 2017 season. Whether you followed the team in person, on social media, on television, via these articles, and/or by any other means, you were all a very important part of the journey and your support is truly appreciated. Our 2018 season opener at Upper Arlington will be here before you know it, but until then… THANK YOU SO MUCH AND GO RAIDERS!!!

IMG_0206One final postgame photo (above) of the Raiders’ field, located at the Livingston Avenue Campus of RHS, where Reynoldsburg went undefeated at in 2017.

Follow @ReynoldsburgFB on Twitter for play-by-play updates during game days and all things pertaining to Reynoldsburg Raiders football.


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Girls Junior Varsity Tennis, Girls Varsity Tennis · Raider Tennis Girls End 11-10 Season


Girls tennis ended the season with a winning 11-10 record, ending an exciting, eventful 11 weeks.

Key varsity players were Hope Chaffin, Sarah Hoffmann, Alexa Matan, Katelyn Whetsel, Abi Swift, Nia Harris, Hannah Dodley, Feaven Gebrezgi, and Maelyn Cheng.

Congratulations to all players, varsity and JV, for a season of hard work, persistent athletic attitude and great sportsmanship.

 


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Multiple Teams · Raiders fall at Central but still alive in playoff hunt


Raiders Tigers Box Score

PICKERINGTON — For the second year in a row, both the Raiders and arch-rival Pickerington Central came into their Week 9 Battle of 256 with a combined 13-3 record and a lot of momentum. Despite recent history not being on their side, the Raiders knew that the past did not matter and that their main focus was on their Friday Oct. 20th contest against the Tigers. But for the 16th season in the row, the Tigers denied the Raiders a win in the Battle of 256 that they have been searching for since they last emerged victorious over Pickerington Central in 2001.

And after Tiger Stadium emptied out and its lights began to dim, it was determined that the Raiders’ season will come down to Week 10 for the second year in a row.

The Raiders (6-3, 2-2) came up empty three times in the first half deep in enemy territory, while the Tigers (8-1, 4-0) scored on all of their first half drives to race to a 34-0 halftime lead. Reynoldsburg would then score its lone touchdown on a 3-yard pass by Raiders quarterback Justin Henry to sophomore receiver Shon Strickland in the 3rd quarter off of a Tigers turnover from a muffed punt near the goal line. They would then come up empty despite recovering an onside kick in Tigers territory on the ensuing drive, while the Tigers would quickly answer with a 33-yard touchdown strike on 3rd and long late in the 3rd quarter on their ensuing drive to put the game back at a running clock for good and hand the Raiders a 41-7 loss in Week 9.

Pickerington Central would also clinch at least a share of the OCC-Ohio division win the win against the Raiders.

“It was a lack of execution once we got down there [into Tigers territory],” Raiders head coach Buddy White said after the loss. “All it takes is a blown tackle here and a blown block there, and all of a sudden we’re knocked backwards. Little things like that really hurt us.”

The Raiders went three and out after receiving the opening kickoff, and the Tigers responded with a 38-yard touchdown pass on its second play from scrimmage as its receiver caught a well-thrown ball in one-on-one coverage near the right corner of the end zone just 1:26 into the game. Raiders returner Cocy Goff would then take the ensuing kickoff to the Tigers 46, but the Raiders were ultimately stopped on 4th down at the Tigers 29. The Tigers would then drive 71 yards the other way in just over three minutes, capping the drive off with a 20-yard touchdown run with 5:09 left in the 1st quarter.

Down 13-0, the Raiders again had some big plays on its ensuing drive, including a 19-yard reception by junior receiver Mershawn Rice to again put them into Tigers territory, but a potential touchdown pass to receiver Princeton Hoskins on 4th and long from the Tigers 36 was just out of his reach near the 10 yard line and the Raiders again turned the ball over on downs. Pickerington Central would respond with three first downs on its next drive coming from big plays of 23 yards in the air, along with 13 and 8 yards on the ground to quickly give the Tigers a 1st and goal from the Raiders 7. They would punch it into the end zone from 7 yards out, and the Raiders found themselves down 20-0 just 33 seconds into the 2nd quarter.

The Raiders would again drive deep into Tigers territory with big rushes by Cowans-Wright leading the way, but a fumbled snap off of a timeout at the Tigers 26 again stalled what was a promising Raiders drive. The Tigers would again respond with big plays on the ground, eating up the game clock and scoring on a 13-yard touchdown run with 3:58 left in the 2nd quarter to extend their lead to 27-0 over the Raiders. On the Raiders’ ensuing drive, a pass by Henry was intercepted in Tigers territory after converting a 4th and 1 to keep its drive alive, and the Tigers would eventually score another touchdown with 50 seconds left in the 2nd quarter to take a 34-0 halftime lead over the Raiders.

With a running clock to start the second half, the Raiders defense would force its first three and out of the game, but the offense would also punt it away. However, the Tigers made their first major mistake of the game by muffing Gabe Philhower’s punt near the goal line to give the Raiders a huge spark. This would set up Henry’s touchdown pass to Strickland to cut the Tigers’ lead to 34-7 halfway into the 3rd quarter, and Raiders defender Ke’Shun Moorer would recover an onside kick that electrified the visiting crowd and stunned the home crowd.

“I gave them the old pride talk,” White said of his message to the team after the onside kick recovery. “I said, ‘Are we just going to sit here and let these guys just punk you, or are we going to go out there and play football?’ They came out and played a little bit harder, but we dug such a big hole for ourselves that was tough to overcome.”

Henry would then complete a 14-yard pass to quickly put the Raiders at the Tigers 30. But despite the momentum shift in favor of the Raiders, the drive stalled with four incomplete passes, and the Tigers responded with a 33-yard touchdown pass on 3rd and long to extend their lead to 41-7 over the Raiders to put the game back at a running clock that would remain at Tiger Stadium for the remainder of the game.

Although the Raiders had their chances deep in Tigers territory, the scoreboard at Tiger Stadium did not reflect that. But despite the big loss and being outscored by a combined 76-14 against both of its OCC-Ohio division rivals from the city of Pickerington, the Raiders know that they still have everything on the line going into their Week 10 regular season finale against Lancaster on Senior Night, specifically a potential playoff berth for the second time in three years and third time in school history.

“We’re just going to get to work next week,” White would go on to say. “If we win that game, there’s a chance that we still get in the playoffs, but we have work to do. I didn’t see a whole lot of positives at all [against Pickerington Central]; I saw some kids that lost their composure, which are things that we just don’t do around here. So we have things to fix, but we have to regroup and finish the regular season, focus on us to even be in the [playoff] discussion, and let chips fall where they may.”

KEY RAIDERS STATS:

-Total Yards: 200 (114 pass, 86 rush)

-Total Yards Allowed: 403 (125 pass, 278 rush)

-Passing: Justin Henry (12/30, 114 YDS, 1 TD, 2 INT)

-Rushing: Courtland Bullard (2 CAR, 35 YDS); Maricus Martin (4 CAR, 30 YDS); Guy Cowans-Wright (10 CAR, 27 YDS)

-Receiving: Mershawn Rice (7 REC, 65 YDS); Shon Strickland (2 REC, 19 YDS, 1 TD)

-Defense: 1 sack, 6 tackles for loss

-Special Teams: Gabe Philhower (1/1 XP, 40.5 yards per punt); 1 fumble recovery (led to Raiders touchdown)

DIVISION STANDINGS + UNOFFICIAL PLAYOFF RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 9:

1. Pickerington Central (8-1, 4-0) – clinched at least share of division

2. Pickerington North (7-2, 3-1)

3. Reynoldsburg (6-3, 2-2)

4. Gahanna-Lincoln (6-3, 2-2)

5. Lancaster (4-5, 1-5; ELIMINATED FROM PLAYOFF CONTENTION)

6. Grove City (1-8, 0-4; ELIMINATED FROM PLAYOFF CONTENTION)

PLAYOFF PICTURE:

NOTE: The top 8 teams in each region qualify for the 2017 OHSAA playoffs following Week 10. All OCC-Ohio teams are in Division 1 Region 3 except for Gahanna-Lincoln, which is in Division 1 Region 2 (and ranked #5 after Week 9). The following unofficial playoff standings are compiled regularly by Joe Eitel (joeeitel.com; @JoeEitel) and are for Division 1 Region 3. Again, as a disclaimer, the following are all unofficial playoff standings if the season ended today with unofficial potential playoff scenarios going into Week 10, specifically for the Raiders:

IN:

1. Centerville (8-1) – clinched playoff spot

2. Pickerington Central (8-1) – clinched playoff spot

3. Hilliard Bradley (9-0) – clinched playoff spot

4. Wayne (7-2) – clinched playoff spot

5. Northmont (7-2) – clinched playoff spot

6. Pickerington North (7-2) – clinched playoff spot

7. Kettering Fairmont (6-3) – can clinch playoff spot with win over Springfield in Week 10

8. Springfield (6-3) – at Kettering Fairmont in Week 10

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OUT (but still in contention):

9. Reynoldsburg (6-3) – vs Lancaster in Week 10

10. Hilliard Darby (6-3) – at Dublin Scioto in Week 10

11. Beavercreek (6-3) – at Centerville in Week 10

12. Miamisburg (4-5) – at Northmont in Week 10

Based on the above information (and courtesy of joeeitel.com), if the season ended today, the Raiders would be on the outside looking in regarding the Division 1 Region 3 playoff race. They would be eliminated at #9, but are currently not far behind Springfield who is sitting in the #8 spot with two weeks to go in the regular season.

2 of the 4 of the Raiders’ other opponents (not including Gahanna-Lincoln and Grove City) they had beaten in the regular season won their Week 9 matchups (Olentangy and Westerville Central) to add to the Raiders’ second level points (points acquired for wins by previous Raiders’ opponents that they already beat in the regular season). St. Charles and Central Crossing both lost their Week 9 games.

Gahanna-Lincoln and Grove City played each other in Week 9, and since the Raiders beat both of these teams in the regular season, they were guaranteed the same amount of second level points from this game regardless of which team won.

CAN THE RAIDERS STILL MAKE THE PLAYOFFS IN 2017 DESPITE THE LOSS AT CENTRAL?

Simply put, yes. But the playoff picture itself is far from simple and certain chips may indeed have to fall in favor of the Raiders.

The Raiders are still very much alive in the Division 1 Region 3 playoff race, as results in Week 10 could dramatically alter the playoff picture based on particularly a multitude of second level points at stake everywhere around the state of Ohio. Six teams have already clinched playoff spots based on the unofficial Week 9 playoff rankings above, while the other six teams ranked #7-12, including the Raiders at #9, will be fighting for the two remaining playoff spots in Week 10.

Therefore, the Raiders still have a shot at their second playoff berth in three seasons.

A win on Senior Night against a Lancaster team already eliminated from playoff contention is extremely critical and is all but mathematically mandatory, but this alone does not guarantee the Raiders a playoff spot. A Springfield loss at a Kettering Fairmont team in control of its own destiny at home on its Senior Night, and a Beavercreek loss to a Centerville team potentially in line for the #1 seed on its Senior Night are both critical for the Raiders not to be passed up in the standings.

On the other hand, Central Crossing and Gahanna-Lincoln beating Marysville and Pickerington North, respectively in Week 10, would help the Raiders further gain breathing room in the playoff rankings based on potential second level points.

The Raiders are already guaranteed some second level points from the Olentangy/Westerville Central game in Week 10 regardless of its outcome, as the Raiders beat both of these teams in the regular season. Grove City and St. Charles are both likely heavy underdogs going into their regular season finales against Pickerington Central and Bishop Hartley, respectively, but wins by the Greyhounds and/or Cardinals certainly would help the Raiders as well in terms of second level points.

One dark horse contender to watch for even if the a lot of the stars above align? Hilliard Darby.

Despite being ranked at #10 and below Reynoldsburg, the Panthers can potentially sneak into the playoff picture with a win at Dublin Scioto and a lot of help from around Central Ohio. However, a lot of the Week 10 games featuring the six teams that Hilliard Darby already beat in the regular season can go either way based on records alone (though Delaware Hayes and Westerville South are both likely heavy underdogs despite both of them playing home on their Senior Nights against undefeated Hilliard Bradley and 8-1 Olentangy Orange, respectively). Therefore, a Hilliard Darby loss to Dublin Scioto is not mandatory for the Raiders’ playoff chances, but would drastically help widen the gap between them in the playoff standings and heavily in the Raiders’ favor.

On the other hand, if the Raiders and Hilliard Darby both win in Week 10 and further second level points are obtained by the Panthers from 2-4 of its previous six opponents that they beat (depending on how many second level points the Raiders end up obtaining from specifically Gahanna-Lincoln, Central Crossing, Grove City, and/or St. Charles in Week 10), that could spell trouble for the Raiders’ playoff chances in 2017.

Therefore, do not count Hilliard Darby out of it by any means. At this time last season in 2016, Lancaster was ranked #10 in the playoff rankings at the conclusion of Week 9 (just like the Panthers are through Week 9 this year); the Gales would beat the Raiders in Week 10 last season to knock the Raiders out of playoff contention, and they got a lot of the help they needed from other football teams around the state of Ohio to help them complete what was a stunning surge into the 2016 playoffs by jumping into the #8 spot and into the playoff picture for the first time all year after the final week of the regular season.

BUT THE RAIDERS MUST TAKE CARE OF THEIR BUSINESS: WEEK 10 PREVIEW

REGULAR SEASON FINALE (Friday 10/27): Home (Senior Night) vs. Lancaster at 7:00pm

The Raiders essentially face a must-win situation on Senior Night: their regular season and home finale against Lancaster. Even though the Gales are mathematically eliminated from playoff contention going into Week 10 this year as opposed to Week 10 last year, mainly in part due to a 3-game losing streak dating back to Week 7, they will be coming to the Burg hungry to close out the season on a high note after giving up an average of 52.5 PPG in particularly its last two games (both losses of 49-36 at Gahanna-Lincoln in Week 8 and 56-28 at home to Pickerington North in Week 9).

The Raiders offense will therefore be in position to bounce back in a big way after only scoring a combined 34 points in its last two games, but given the fact Lancaster has scored exactly 42 points against the Raiders in each of the last two seasons, the Raiders will certainly not be taking Lancaster lightly, regardless of how much each team still has at stake in terms of playoff hopes in 2017. That being said, the Raiders defense has drastically improved from last year, allowing 17.4 PPG through nine games as opposed to 26 PPG after nine games in 2016, so it will be interesting to see how the Raiders defense matches up with the Gales offense next Friday night.

Kickoff against the Gales is at 7:00pm on Friday 10/27 with the Senior Night ceremony happening before kickoff.

Follow @ReynoldsburgFB on Twitter for play-by-play updates during game days and all things pertaining to Reynoldsburg Raiders football.


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News · Girls Soccer Season Ends With Loss To Gahanna


The Raiders picked the bracket with Gahanna Lincoln because they believed they were capable of defeating the Lions. The final starting lineup as in the featured photograph front row left to right includes Kendall Craiglow, Caitlyn McKean, Ryanne Buck, MaryKate Watkins; second row left to right Isa Fuentes, Julia Bazley, Shayna Newsom, Alyssa Shiffman, Alissa Richmond, Alexis Langwasser and Cassidy Collins.

The season finale and the player’s efforts is best summed up by Donna Levine

You Can Be Whatever You Want To Be!
by Donna Levine

There is inside you
All of the potential
To be whatever you want to be;
All of the energy
To do whatever you want to do.
Imagine yourself as you would like to be,
Doing what you want to do,
And each day, take one step
Towards your dream.
And though at times it may seem too
difficult to continue,
Hold on to your dream.
One morning you will awake to find
That you are the person you dreamed of,
Doing what you wanted to do,
Simply because you had the courage
To believe in your potential
And to hold on to your dream.

Girls Soccer Raiders’ record stands as 8-10 but those are only numbers and do not tell of the dreams, friendship, hard work, bumps, bruises and commitment given by your players in purple on the pitch. The Awards banquet is all that is left in closing out the 2017 season.

Your roving reporter

Harry Head

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Girls Junior Varsity Soccer, Girls Varsity Soccer · Girls Soccer: Raiders defeat Marion Harding Presidents 7-1


The Marion Harding Presidents came bumping down Ohio Route 23 for over 60 miles to contest advancing in the 2017 District Tournament. Not once did the pep harmonica band break out in “Hail to the Chief ” usually heard when Presidents arrive. Instead a recorded version of the poem “The Defense of Fort M’Henry” written by Attorney Francis Scott Key in Baltimore harbor on September 14, 1814 was played. The musical notes were penned by John Stafford Smith for his drinking buddies in a London social club “The Anacreontic Society.” All faced the current Star Spangled Banner just the same.

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Raider’s starters were Ry Buck, Caitlyn McKean, Alyssa Shiffman, Alexis Langwasser, Isa Fuentes, Kendall Craiglow, Shayna Newsom, Julia Bazley, Emily Snedegar, Cassidy Collins and Alissa Richmond.

The Presidents were sporting a record including 8 victories, a goal sought by your Purple Footies. Action was quick and sharp, tilting the pitch towards the Presidents goal. It did not take long before Ry Buck, the Purple’s 9, was presented a ball with nothing but space, the goal and MH keeper Parkar Mauk. Three minutes were gone and Ry snapped home her first of three goals. No fake news here, the Arbitrator signaled it in.

Caitlyn McKean playing position #10 was herself was sent in on goal by Isa Fuentes pass, Caitlyn immediately knocked in the game winner. RHS 2 – MH 0

Two minutes later Kendall Craiglow busted up the middle after grabbing an errant ball. Kendall spotted Ry Buck running into space and slipped her the ball for tally #3. Not ten minutes were gone and a rout was on. RHS 3 – MH 0

Presented with an opportunity to sharpen the entire team’s skills against a hard working competitor, players started a rotation that saw all 20 players to enter in the first stanza.

Bayoushe King set up Ry Buck for her hat trick by working the ball up the left side to cross to a waiting Ry. Ry didn’t waste time punishing keeper Mauk for the evenings 4th goal. RHS 4 – MH 0

All night long Harding’s Nina MCGinn was trying to nick in to the Raiders back third. With 10 minutes left in the first 40, Nina was able to split Ruby Allender and Julia Bazley. The Raiders coughed up the ball between the attacking line and the backs, the Presidents played an long ball and Nina was able to arrive just ahead of Ruby to launch a ball past a hard charging Alissa Richmond cutting the Raiders lead by one. Just like that Alissa shut out streak was up in smoke. RHS 4 – MH 1

Irritated at losing the shut out Bayoushe King went back to the well and sent a ball this time to Isa Fuentes who was now playing the 10 spot, Isa did the rest and knocked in her 6th goal of the season. RHS 5 – MH 1

The first forty minutes was in the books, everyone had played and the Raiders were up four goals. Instructions were play 2 touch soccer, move the ball effectively as if the Lions were on the Raider’s field. Play sharp and be sharp!

Kendall Craiglow had set up some of the first 5 goals and wanted to cash in and get her fourth goal of the season. She did just that, rushing past the President’s defenders to whip in the evening’s goal number 6. That also earned Kendall a rest as again all twenty players made appearances in the second half.

Julia Bazley playing center back in the #5 position, who normally is keeping shots away from the Raiders nets asked to try her luck up front. Perhaps remembering how her goal beat Hartley in 2015. Julia moved up to position 9. MaryKate Watkins help make Julia’s position adjustment pay off by slipping the ball though a gap. Julia then promptly cut through the President’s goal nets secret service detachment, closing out the nights scoring. RHS 7 – MH 1.

Keeper Alissa Richmond had a few minutes work, mainly returning back passes to unmarked teammates.

Next up in tournament time is Thursday Oct 19, 7pm; your Raiders plan on pillaging Gahanna Lincoln in Gahanna’s football stadium and advancing.

Your Sports Reporter

Harry Head

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Multiple Teams · Raiders now 6-2 with win over Grove City; Battle of 256 up next


Raiders Greyhounds Box Score

REYNOLDSBURG — Coming off one of its biggest home wins in recent memory, the Raiders were back in action on Friday October 13th for a division matchup against Grove City. Despite a road trip to arch-rival Pickerington Central looming next week in Week 9, the Raiders went into Week 8 with the mindset that all three of their remaining games are playoff games, and that the focus for this week was specifically on the Greyhounds.

Although they didn’t light up the scoreboard as much in the second half, there was no bad luck for the Raiders against Grove City on Friday the 13th, and they took another step towards a potential second playoff birth in three seasons.

Starting quarterback Justin Henry passed for 282 yards and 2 touchdowns for the Raiders (6-2, 2-1), who raced to a 17-0 halftime lead over the Greyhounds. Both teams would come up empty frequently in the 3rd quarter, but Grove City would deny the Raiders their second shutout of the season with a 24-yard passing touchdown late in that period. Despite that, the Raiders would eventually pull away and emerge with a 27-7 home win over the Greyhounds.

“I didn’t want to give up that score, which I was a little upset about, because I wanted a shutout,” Raiders head coach Buddy White said of Grove City’s touchdown. “But you know what, we came here to get a win, and we got the win.”

The Raiders won the coin toss and elected to receive the opening kickoff, but both the Raiders and Greyhounds would go three and out on their opening drives. Henry would then respond by completing passes of 19 and 49 yards to receiver Princeton Hoskins, eventually setting up a 23-yard field goal by kicker Gabe Philhower to give the Raiders a 3-0 lead with 6:56 left in the 1st quarter. Grove City would go three and out again, and the Raiders would start at their own 38 on their ensuing drive. Henry would respond by completing a 40-yard pass to receiver Mershawn Rice to put the Raiders at the Greyhounds 22, and this would eventually set up a 7-yard touchdown pass from Henry to Rice to give the Raiders a 10-0 lead after one quarter.

Both teams would come up empty on their next drives despite Grove City getting two consecutive first downs to move the chains for the first time in the game. They would both go three and out on each of their next drives, but Grove City would then get deep into Raiders territory on a drive aided by a 35-yard pass and a 22-yard run. They would attempt a 31-yard field goal, but the kick fell short of the post and Grove City came up empty as a result. Henry would complete two passes of 7 and 13 yards to sophomore receiver Shon Strickland, and eventually a 42-yard pass to receiver Camby Goff to put the Raiders at the Greyhounds 5. Henry would then throw a 5-yard touchdown pass to a wide open Goff in the middle of the end zone with 1:36 left in the 2nd quarter to give the Raiders a 17-0 lead. They appeared to be in good position for another touchdown after Henry completed another long pass of 38 yards to Strickland, but a rushing touchdown with 0.8 seconds to go in the first half was waved off by a penalty, and the Raiders went into the locker room with a 17-0 halftime lead.

Grove City would receive the 3rd quarter kickoff, and their kickoff returner eluded the Raiders special teams except for Philhower, who was the only one on the Raiders’ special teams left for the Greyhounds to dodge.

“I saw the guy break through, and I said ‘oh no’,” Raiders kicker Philhower said of the 3rd quarter kickoff return by Grove City. “And then I just threw my body at him.”

Fortunately, Philhower made the touchdown-saving tackle at the Raiders 42, and the defense would eventually force a punt to keep the Greyhounds off the scoreboard.

“I didn’t say anything to Gabe [Philhower] and I just give him a fist bump,” coach White said of the play. “It was a big tackle. I was upset that they got a good return, so I didn’t get a chance to appreciate his tackle as much as I would have liked to. He is a tough kid; all you have to do is go watch a soccer match and you’ll see he is a tough kid.”

Philhower would eventually kick a field goal on the ensuing Raiders drive to extend the lead to 20-0 with 7:31 left in the 3rd quarter, and Grove City responded with a drive that threatened the Raiders’ shutout. However, they would fumble a snap deep in Raiders territory and junior defender Jay Amburgey would recover the ball at the Raiders 24, again preventing Grove City from scoring. Both teams would come up empty on their next drives, but the Raiders particularly were looking for a spark on offense to give themselves as much momentum as possible.

Raiders sophomore running back MarcAnthony Gray literally took matters into his own hands.

He would rip off a 37-yard run on his first career carry to put the Raiders in the red zone midway through the 4th quarter. This would set up a 41-yard field goal attempt by Philhower, but it was no good and the Greyhounds eventually broke the shutout on a drive aided by 3 big plays and a 24-yard touchdown pass to cut the Raiders lead to 20-7 with 3:57 to go.

“We were kind of in prevention mode at that point,” Raiders head coach Buddy White said after the scoring play. “We have a game next week, and I said to get our starters out of there so we do not get anyone hurt.”

This set the stage for Gray’s first career touchdown run of 11 yards on his second career carry with 2:51 to go in regulation, giving the Raiders a 27-7 lead that they would maintain for the remainder of the game.

“I was just hoping I would get the touchdown and get another score for my teammates,” Gray said after the game. “Coach [White] told me to do what I’ve been practicing, and I just went out there and did what I was doing all week. I was just excited when I got the touchdown, and I’m just glad we came out here and got the win.”

With the defense allowing an average of 14.5 PPG this season in its first 8 games as opposed to 23.9 PPG through Week 8 of last season, and a patient offense that is capable of making big plays and wearing down opposing defenses, the Raiders like where they are at going into the Battle of 256 but know they still have a lot of room for improvement.

“A lot of these kids [on defense] got a lot of playing time last year, so obviously experience is key,” coach white said of the turnaround on the Raiders defense. “They are obviously maturing this year, and 8 of our defensive starters will be back next year, so we anticipate being even better. A lot of it is maturity and that we changed our philosophy, so that works out pretty well also.”

“We know that MarcAnthony [Gray] has talent, and we wanted to make sure we gave him an opportunity to get some runs tonight. He did just what we expected him to do. Offensively, I’m a perfectionist, so I was a little upset about the problems we had running the football. That is something we’re going to have to address and we know what we have to work on for next week. But we got some big plays from our receivers, and Justin [Henry] made some good throws.”

Despite sitting at 6-2, the Raiders know firsthand that they are no lock for the playoffs with a road trip to a now red-hot Pickerington Central and their regular season finale against Lancaster on Senior Night remaining. They got off to an identical 6-2 start last season, but would drop their remaining two contests against these teams to finish 6-4 and be denied a playoff berth in 2016. Even more brutal is the crowded Division 1 Region 3 playoff race, which saw the Raiders fall to the 9th spot despite the win over Grove City as a result of the other Week 8 results from around Ohio, thus making both remaining games in 2017 extremely critical.

On top of that, their focus now is on next week’s trip to arch-rival Pickerington Central where history isn’t on the Raiders’ side, as the Raiders have not beaten since them 2001. But the Raiders understand the importance of this game and that past results do not matter once both teams meet again next week.

“We’re not going to have to spend much time motivating those kids,” White would go on to say. “These guys know Central and they know what they’re about. I’m just more focused on making sure we have a good week of practice. This will be an easy week to coach, because these kids are going to be self-motivated and they’re going to want to play well. This game doesn’t have anything to do with the past; it’s going to be about what’s happening right now: us against them.”

“May the better team win.”

KEY RAIDERS STATS:

-Total Yards: 385 (282 pass, 103 rush)

-Total Yards Allowed: 311 (190 pass, 121 rush)

-Passing: Justin Henry (16/30, 282 YDS, 2 TD)

-Rushing: MarcAnthony Gray (2 CAR, 48 YDS, 1 TD); Guy Cowans-Wright (13 CAR, 42 YDS); Justin Henry (5 CAR, 16 YDS)

-Receiving: Princeton Hoskins (4 REC, 76 YDS); Mershawn Rice (4 REC, 61 YDS); Camby Goff (2 REC, 53 YDS, 1 TD)

-Defense: 2 sacks, 6 tackles for loss, 1 fumble recovery (Jay Amburgey)

-Special Teams: Gabe Philhower (2/2 XP, 2/3 FG)

DIVISION STANDINGS + UNOFFICIAL PLAYOFF RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 9:

NOTE: The top 8 teams in each region qualify for the 2017 OHSAA playoffs following Week 10. All OCC-Ohio teams are in Division 1 Region 3 except for Gahanna-Lincoln, which is in Division 1 Region 2. (The +/- number after a team’s Region denotes the change in its Region playoff rankings from the previous week.)

These unofficial playoff standings are compiled regularly by Joe Eitel (joeeitel.com; @JoeEitel).

1. Pickerington Central (7-1, 3-0, #3 Region 3, +2)

2. Pickerington North (6-2, 2-1, #7 Region 3, -4)

3. Reynoldsburg (6-2, 2-1, #9 Region 3, -1)

4. Gahanna-Lincoln (5-3, 1-2, #3 Region 2, +2)

5. Lancaster (4-4, 1-2, #13 Region 3, +0)

6. Grove City (1-7, 0-3, #16 Region 3, -1)

PLAYOFF PICTURE:

Based on the above information (and courtesy of joeeitel.com), if the season ended today, the Raiders would be on the outside looking in regarding the Division 1 Region 3 playoff race. They would be eliminated at #9, but are currently not far behind Springfield who is sitting in the #8 spot with two weeks to go in the regular season.

Only 2 of the Raiders’ other opponents they had beaten in the regular season won their Week 8 matchups (Gahanna-Lincoln and Central Crossing), hurting the Raiders in terms of second level points (points acquired for wins by previous Raiders’ opponents that they already beat in the regular season). St. Charles, Olentangy, and Westerville Central all lost their Week 8 games.

The Raiders are still very much alive in the Division 1 Region 3 playoff race, as results in the remaining two weeks could dramatically alter the playoff picture based on first level points (points acquired by Raiders wins) and particularly a multitude of second level points at stake as a result. At least one win against either Pickerington Central and/or Lancaster should therefore result in a good chance of qualifying the Raiders for the playoffs after Week 10 depending on future results around the state of Ohio. (Wins in both of their remaining games should very likely get the Raiders into the playoffs, while two losses would definitely eliminate the Raiders from the playoffs.)

REMAINING SCHEDULE:

Friday 10/20: Away vs. Pickerington Central at 7:00pm (W 24-21 at Pickerington North in Week 8)

Friday 10/27: Home (Senior Night) vs. Lancaster at 7:00pm (L 49-36 at Gahanna-Lincoln in Week 8)

The Raiders will be looking for their first win against Pickerington Central since 2001 in a rivalry game that has heavy playoff implications. Kickoff at the Tigers is at 7:00pm on Friday 10/20 for the 2017 edition of the Battle of 256.

Follow @ReynoldsburgFB on Twitter for play-by-play updates during game days and all things pertaining to Reynoldsburg Raiders football.


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News · Girls Soccer: Varsity and JV Earn Victories Over Cruisers


The last regular season matches had arrived and the Raiders were pumped. The trip to Groveport Madison was a rewarding night for both the Varsity and Junior Varsity as each was victorious.

The Junior Varsity started out with Ruby Allender, Kesiah DeLong, Kassidy Mitchell, Taylor Starks, Madison McHamara, Aliyah Webb, Diana Ramirez, Kristin Vanderhoff, Hana Fishatsion, Gianni Prince and in goal Caroline Kelly.

The match was even for the first 12 minutes until a flagrant foul dragged down Taylor Starks in the Cruiser’s box. The arbiter pointed to the spot and up stepped Ruby Allender to take the try.  Zip into the top left corner went Ruby’s shot and the Raiders had a one goal lead. The lead was short lived as the Cruisers answered within the next minute to knot the match. That was Groveport’s high water mark as the Raiders went on a shooting tear. Alas all were saved until another foul set up Hana Fishatsion’s free kick from 20 yards out. Hana curved in her blast to put the Raiders up 2-1. Tough work kept it that way and the Raiders walked off winners.

This time of year Senior Night is a regular occurrence and so it was with Groveport Madison. The Raiders three seniors Brooklyn Golden, Shayna Newsom and Emily Snedegar were given roses before the fifteen Cruiser seniors and families were recognized.

Raider’s starters were Ry Buck, Caitlyn McKean, Alyssa Shiffman, Alexis Langwasser, Isa Fuentes, Kendall Craiglow, Shayna Newsom, Julia Bazley,Emily Snedegar, Brooklynn Golden and Alissa Richmond.

Le’Veon Bell had donated $750,000 for Turf Field at Groveport Madison High School and Cruisers did not want to yield on their new turf. The match was a rough affair from minute one with shoulder tackles and bumps setting the stage. The Cruiser’s high dollar score board showed 16 minutes gone, the Raiders pushed the ball into the Cruiser’s back third and earned a corner kick. The Raider’s gang of four “hot heads” lined up out side the 18 yard box and charged in looking for Isa Fuentes’s service, as if on a rope senior Shayna Newsom knocked in the game winner. RHS 1 – GM 0

No sooner had the dest settle on that bit of action when another corner was earned and sent in by Kendall Craiglow. The quality of service so excited the Cruisers they decided to save the gang of four the trouble and blasted it in themselves. RHS 2 – GM 0

The instructions for half time were play fast but don’t rush the play. Play two touch and work people up into scoring positions. The plan worked as possession soccer became the by word of the second stanza. Quick and effective passing put Caitlyn McKean up the left side with Cruisers in hot pursuit. Caitlyn drew the defense over and calmly whipped a ball to Kendall Craiglow on the back post for a classic one touch finish. RHS 3 – GM 0

Isa Fuentes was getting knocked around and finally said enough is enough. Isa intercepted a pass, rushed into the gap and headed for goal. Three Cruisers thundered in but Isa had the last say striking the ball for a low far post shot that sealed the deal. RHS 4 – GM 0

Keeper Alissa Richmond had some moments of heavy work, especially as the Raiders got grumpy with all the pushing and shoving. Alissa was up to the task knocking away three direct kick shots and keeping the year’s 5th clean sheet.

Tournament time this Monday Oct 16; Raiders hosting Marion Harding 7:00 pm, Baldwin Soccer Stadium. No school season tickets are recognized as this is a tournament game.

Your Sports Reporter

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Harry Head