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Ohio prep football has record setting week

The Associated Press

It was another big weekend for high school football record-breakers across the state.

Friday, November 03, 2000

It was another big weekend for high school football record-breakers across the state.

Delphos St. John’s tied Versailles’ mark for consecutive victories, Jason Bainum and Don Lagoni continued their outstanding years, Bellevue’s Pete Lepley set a state record for reception yardage and two central Ohio players each scored eight times in a game.

St. John’s blasted Coldwater 42-14 to join Versailles as the only Ohio teams with 54 straight victories. Versailles set its mark from 1993 to 1996.

The three-time defending state champion Blue Jays got 253 yards and three touchdowns from Zach Weber, who has 1,785 yards on 222 carries this year, with 23 touchdowns.

St. John’s can move into first on the list of unbeatens by defeating Toledo Ottawa Hills in a first-round playoff game Friday.

Bainum, who last week set the state single-season rushing record, became Ohio’s first 3,000-yard runner as he gained 243 yards in 46 carries for Williamsburg against New Richmond. But his team was beaten 43-16 by the undefeated Lions and won’t make the playoffs, so he won’t get a chance to add to his total of 3,104 yards.

Lagoni, of Ashtabula Sts. John and Paul, who had set a record for receptions in one season a week earlier, added to that mark with 11 catches for 138 yards as the Heralds lost 44-16 against Cuyahoga Valley Christian. He finished the year with 108 receptions for 1,532 yards.

Lagoni’s yardage figure was higher than the state record of 1,488 yards set in 1998 by Celina’s Chad Highley, but Lepley, from Bellevue, did better still.

Lepley caught 12 passes for 198 yards as the Redmen beat Tiffin Columbian 35-28, giving him 1,624 receiving yards for the season, with the chance to add to that record in the playoffs. Lepley also intercepted a pass to clinch the victory.

The eight rushing touchdowns by Maurice Hall of Columbus Brookhaven and eight passing touchdowns by Westerville South’s Rocky Pentello tied the state single-game record.

Hall broke his own school record with 411 yards on 19 carries while playing in slightly more than half of a 75-16 demolition of Columbus Briggs. He has 2,548 yards and 45 touchdowns for the season.

Pentello completed 25-of-40 passes for 401 yards in a 61-38 decision over Groveport, pushing him to 3,060 yards and 31 touchdowns on the season. Lance Moore caught 18 passes for 282 yards and finished the year with 97 receptions for 1,525 yards and 24 scores.

UNBEATENS: There were 29 unbeaten teams in the regular season and all made the playoffs. All the teams with one loss also made it. The unbeatens were:

– Division I: Cleveland St. Ignatius, Upper Arlington, Shaker Heights, Pickerington, Solon, Cincinnati Colerain, Logan and Lebanon.

– Division II: Youngstown Chaney, Defiance and Marysville.

– Division III: Portsmouth, McConnelsville Morgan, Lisbon Beaver Local and New Richmond.

– Division IV: Sandusky Perkins, Coshocton, Newark Licking Valley and Wellington.

– Division V: Liberty Center and New Middletown Springfield.

– Division VI: Delphos St. John’s, Mogadore, Norwalk St. Paul, Portsmouth Notre Dame, Cuyahoga Heights, Toronto, Covington and McComb.

TURNAROUNDS: Rich Wright has gone 22-9 in three years at Lisbon Beaver Local since taking over a program that went 4-26 the three years previous. The Beavers, who have won 17 straight, edged Richmond Edison 7-6 to go 10-0 for the second time in school history. They didn’t make the playoffs when they finished unbeaten in 1973.

Two Lorain County schools ended long winning droughts with victories Saturday afternoon as Sheffield Brookside beat Oberlin Firelands 35-14 and Columbia Station Columbia downed Gates Mills Gilmour 17-6. Both winning teams are 6-4. The winning seasons are the first since 1990 for Brookside and 1984 for Columbia.

Loudonville went from 1-9 last year to 7-2 this season, making the playoffs by beating Belleville Clear Fork in the season finale; Fostoria rebounded from 0-10 in 1999 to 8-2, a playoff berth and a share of the Great Lakes League title. The Redmen are the only Division III team in a league dominated by Division I schools.

THE BIG ONE: Massillon Washington beat Canton McKinley 13-9 in the 107th edition of the state’s oldest rivalry as Perry James rushed for 153 yards and scored the winning touchdown. Massillon’s Justin Zwick threw for 152 yards, leaving him 49 short of breaking the state career passing mark of 7,190 yards.

ONE-MAN SHOW: Josh Friley of Crestline became the first Crawford County player to surpass 2,000 yards in a season as the Bulldogs blasted New Washington Buckeye Central 53-7. He had a school record 329 yards on 12 carries, including touchdowns of 67, 71, 53 and 10 yards. He finished the year with 2,124 yards and a 10.2-yard average per carry.

ODDS AND ENDS: New Concord John Glenn broke the school rushing record with 657 yards in a 49-20 victory over Dresden Tri-Valley; Johnstown’s 19-13 victory against Danville was the first time the Johnnies had won their final regular-season game since 1982; Circleville Logan Elm earned its first playoff appearance by sticking to the ground, scoring 35 touchdowns, all of them rushing.

Two neighboring schools set seasonal scoring records as Coshocton scored 464 points and Newcomerstown 395; Hamilton Badin’s Tom Puma ran for 169 yards and scored all the Division IV Rams’ points in a 16-10 victory over Division I Hamilton.

Chase Riffle, a sophomore quarterback brought up from the reserves when Huber Heights Wayne was 4-4, led the Warriors to two straight victories and a playoff berth; junior quarterback Adam Quirk paced St. Clairsville to an 8-2 mark, finishing the year with 2,305 yards passing and 25 touchdown passes.