Southern Ohio Conference clash: Symmes Valley vs. Oak Hill
Oak Hill (6-1)
at Symmes Valley (6-1)
7:30 p.m., Friday
WILLOW WOOD, Ohio -- The Symmes Valley football team has done a good job of following orders from coach Rusty Webb.
Webb wanted the Vikings focused on the Sciotoville Community game last Friday and not think about the showdown seven days later at home against Oak Hill.
"I'm proud of them staying focused on the task at hand," Webb said.
Symmes Valley turned to its punishing run game and stout defense to defeat the Tartans, 56-14,and improved to 6-1, 2-0 in the Southern Ohio Conference Division I.
Starting Sunday, the Vikings officially turned their attention to Oak Hill, also 6-1 and 2-0 in the SOC 1 after last week's 30-7 win over Portsmouth Notre Dame. The teams meet at 7:30 p.m., Friday, at Viking Stadium. The winner clinches at least a share of the title.
"We're going up against an outstanding football team," Webb said of the Oaks, whose only loss was in triple overtime at Minford (20-19). "Our kids look forward to the challenge. They're excited. They know what's at stake."
The Vikings rushed for 474 yards as a team and Tyler Rowe connected on 4 of 5 passes for 74 yards, including a 37-yard TD strike to Alec Herrell last week. Herrell returned a punt 76 yards for a score and rushed for two touchdowns. The defense limited Sciotoville Community to 181 total yards and quarterback Justin Crager managed only 37 yards rushing on 15 attempts. He got 71 passing on 4 of 13.
"They're a young team," Webb said of Sciotoville East. "Justin Crager's a solid quarterback. We keyed on him and did a good job on him."
Oak Hill also has a solid running game with tailback Wes Harden, fullback Devon Davis and quarterback Drew Haislop. Davis ran for two TDs against Notre Dame. Harden contributed 73 yards on 21 rushes to put him over 1,000 yards for the season. Haislop connected on 6 of 12 passes for 111 yards and two scores.
On defense, the Oaks limited Notre Dame to 75 total yards in the second half.
"They go a great job of playing team defense," Webb said of the Oaks. "They're very sound. I don't think the game plan will change that much. They like to stay on the ground the way we do, but they'll throw more than we will. It all comes down to execution."
The Vikings have won four straight since a 29-22 home loss to rival Chesapeake in Week 3.