High School Football Week 5: Shawnee tries to bounce back after first loss

Shawnee's Tyler Mercer dives over Tecumseh's Jackson Berner. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

Braves will play second unbeaten team in a row

Rick Meeks delivered a message to his team after a loss to London last week that probably has been used by many high school football coaches this season.

“We’re lucky to be playing,” Meeks told the Braves. “We’re actually getting to play.”

A handful of games across the state are cancelled each week because of the positive COVID-19 tests. The Central Buckeye Conference has been fortunate. No team has missed a game in the first four weeks.

Shawnee played well in the first three weeks, beating Urbana 40-3, Bellefontaine 13-6 in overtime and Tecumseh 39-14. It ran into another unbeaten team in Week 4 and lost 34-7 to London.

“We didn’t play well,” Meeks said. “Physically, they just beat us up. We couldn’t get anything going offensively. At times, defensively, we played OK, but we just couldn’t stop them enough. We can’t harp on it. We felt bad because we could have played better than we did. I do believe they were a better football team. There’s no doubt about that. But I don’t think they got our best.”

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Shawnee (3-1) plays another undefeated team in Week 5. Jonathan Alder (4-0) sits atop the CBC Kenton Trail Division. It’s tied with London. Each team is 3-0 in the division.

The Braves beat Alder 17-14 in 2018, the last time they played at Shawnee, and lost 56-34 at Alder last season. Alder quarterback JT Keith leads the conference with 180 passing yards per game, and three Alder receivers rank in the top 10 in the CBC in yards per game.

“We’ve got to get it going offensively,” Meeks said, “so we can keep our defense off the field. It’s going to take our A game, our best game, or we’re going to have to have some luck to make it happen."

Here’s a look at the other Week 5 games:

Springboro (2-1) at Springfield (3-1): Springboro started last season 6-0 before losing 23-0 to Springfield. This season, both teams have suffered heartbreaking losses to Northmont. Springboro lost 40-36 in Week 1 on a 32-yard touchdown pass with nine seconds to play. Springfield blew a 28-14 lead in the fourth quarter and lost 38-35 in overtime last week.

Northwestern (1-3) at Benjamin Logan (1-3): Northwestern has won the last two games in this series after losing the four previous matchups.

Graham (4-0) at Indian Lake (2-2): Graham can clinch at least a share of the Central Buckeye Conference Mad River Division championship with a victory. The Falcons have already clinched their first winning season since they were 8-2 in 2009.

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Kenton Ridge (0-4) at Tecumseh (1-3): Both teams are 0-3 in the Kenton Trail Division. Kenton Ridge beat Tecumseh 35-29 in three overtimes last season. The teams have split the last 10 meetings.

North Union (2-2) at Urbana (0-4): The Hillclimbers have lost 14 games in a row.

Catholic Central (0-4) at Cedarville (0-4): Cedarville has won four games in the last five seasons, and three of those victories have come against Catholic Central.

Southeastern (1-3) at Greenon (3-1): Greenon was the only Clark County team to win last week. It enters the final two weeks tied with Greeneview atop the Ohio Heritage Conference South Division at 3-0. Greenon plays at Greeneview in the final week of the regular season.

Greeneview (3-1) at Madison Plains (2-2): Greeneview has beaten three teams in the last three weeks that have combined for one victory — Southeastern, Cedarville and Catholic Central — and outscored them 101-14.

Fairbanks (4-0) at Mechanicsburg (4-0): The winner will clinch at least a share of the OHC North Division title.

West Jefferson (3-1) at Triad (1-3): Triad has lost this matchup the last three seasons.

Northeastern (1-3) at West Liberty-Salem (2-2): West Liberty-Salem has lost two games in a row for the first time since 2016.

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