Ironton back at Groveport

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 6, 2000

It’s been a while.

Monday, November 06, 2000

It’s been a while. As a matter of fact, it’s been 18 years since the Ironton Fighting Tigers have played at Groveport High school. But Ironton will return to the site Friday when it meets the Coshocton Redskins in the Region 15 Division IV semifinals at 7:30 p.m.

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The last time Ironton played at Groveport was 1982 against Urbana in the state semifinals. The Fighting Tigers came into the game ranked No. 2 in the final Associated Press and Urbana was No. 1.

Ironton won the game 28-20 and went on to play Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary’s in the state title game the following week at Ohio Stadium.

This will mark Ironton’s third trip to Groveport. The Fighting Tigers also played at the field in 1979 and beat Hamilton Badin 21-6 in the state semifinals. Ironton went on to beat Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary’s the next week 7-6 at the Akron Rubber Bowl to win the Class AA state championship.

Ironton (9-1) will face the unbeaten Redskins for the third time in school history. The Fighting Tigers won 15-6 in the opening game of the 1986 season, then knocked off Coshocton 20-0 in the first game of the 1987 playoffs at Ohio University.

Coshocton was ranked No. 2 in the final Associated Press Division IV poll behind defending state champion Sandusky Perkins.

The other Region 15 semifinal game has Newark Licking Valley playing Utica at Newark High School’s White Field. Licking Valley (11-0) was ranked third in the final AP poll while Utica (11-0) was ranked 11th.

Ironton reached the regional semifinals by routing Martins Ferry 43-7 last Friday. Coshocton bounced Bloom-Carroll 41-14, Licking Valley topped Loudonville 22-18, and Utica got past Bellaire 35-28 in overtime