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Fighting Tigers increase prep poll lead

The vote total was down, but the point difference was up.

Wednesday, October 17, 2001

The vote total was down, but the point difference was up.

Even though three poll voters did not cast ballots, the Ironton Fighting Tigers increased their lead in the Association Press high school football poll.

Ironton, 8-0, pulled in 18 first place votes, down three from last week, and consequently the point total was down from 326 to 296.

But the Fighting Tigers lead over second place Licking Valley went from 63 points to 73 as Licking Valley’s total dropped to 223.

With only two weeks remaining in the regular season, the Fighting Tigers appear to have the poll championship wrapped up if they can beat Belfry, Ky., and Columbus DeSales on the road.

But that is a big "if." Ironton lost on its last trip to Belfry and last year’s win over DeSales was Ironton’s first over the traditional Ohio power. Ironton has met DeSales three times at home and three times in the playoffs, but never on DeSales’ home field.

Ironton has won three mythical poll championships: 1986, 1988, and 1993.

Youngstown Ursuline, last year’s OHSAA state champion, is third followed by Kenton, Canton Catholic, Germantown Valley View, Portsmouth, Perry, Coldwater, and New Lexington.

Other division poll leaders include Warren Harding in Division I, Avon Lake in Division II, Sunbury Big Walnut in Division III, Bedford Chanel in Division IV, and Mogadore in Division VI.

For a complete poll listing, see SCOREBOARD on page 9.