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Ironton returns to Lancaster

Been here.

Monday, November 13, 2000

Been here. Done this. It’s getting to be all too familiar for the Ironton Fighting Tigers, and just about as familiar for the Licking Valley Panthers.

The two teams will meet at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Lancaster High School for the Division IV Region 15 championship and a berth in the state semifinals.

This marks the third meeting between the two schools with the last game at Lancaster in 1990 in the regional finals. Ironton, coming off a rebuilding year following a state championship season, lost 19-6 to Licking Valley.

Ironton also played Licking Valley in 1988 and won 38-10 en route to the Division III state finals. The Fighting Tigers lost in the title game 14-12 to Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary’s.

The trip to Lancaster is the fifth for Ironton. The other playoff games were against Columbus St. Francis DeSales. Ironton lost both meetings, 28-27 in two overtimes in 1991, and 13-0 in 1994.

In the other Division IV regional championship games, Cincinnati Wyoming (10-2) plays Germantown Valley View (11-1) at Fairfield Stadium in Region 16, Coldwater (10-2) faces Wellington (12-0) at Tiffin in Region 14, and Perry (10-2) goes against Youngstown Ursuline (11-1) at Twinsburg for the Region 13 title.

Although the Ohio High School Athletic Association does not announce state semifinal matchups, an Ironton win would probably pit the Fighting Tigers against the Wyoming-Valley View winner. Ironton faced both teams last year in the regional playoffs when the Fighting Tigers were in Region 16.

The Portsmouth Trojans are one step away from their first-ever state semifinal berth. The Trojans, 12-0, face Dayton Chaminade-Julienne (10-2) at Hillsboro at 7 p.m. Saturday.