OHC showdown: Rams, Indians will meet in battle of unbeatens

When one streak ended in Mechanicsburg last season, another streak continued in Jamestown.

This year, the Indians will have a chance to play spoiler against their Greene County rival.

Two nearly identical programs will meet in an early season battle of 3-0 teams on Friday night when Mechanicsburg High School travels to Greeneview High School’s Don Nock Field in Jamestown.

»RELATED: Unbeaten Springfield at winless Centerville

»RELATED: Former Springfield standout reinstated at Wisconsin

Last year, the Rams ended Mechanicsburg’s 26-game regular season winning streak when John Brakeall hit a 20-yard field goal with about one minute remaining to give Greeneview a 17-14 victory. The Rams wouldn’t lose again until the playoffs.

This year, the Indians will look to snap Greeneview’s 14-game regular season win streak. The Rams haven’t lost a regular season game since … Mechanicsburg beat them 40-7 on Oct. 21, 2016.

There’s an extra buzz in the air this week in Jamestown, second-year coach Ryan Haines said.

“These are the fun ones,” he said. “I want the kids to embrace that. This is what it’s all about.”

»RELATED: Northwestern coach earns first win

»SOCCER: Best start for Greenon girls in decade

Mechanicsburg coach Kurt Forrest and Haines are both disciples of coach Neal Kasner, who led both programs to playoff prominence in the past 20 years.

“Anytime Mechanicsburg and Greenview get together it’s a big game,” Forrest said. “You look at the two programs and how they’re philosophically aligned and a lot of that has to do with Coach Kasner’s influence on both of the programs over the years. We have a lot of respect for them.”

The last two matchups have been played at Mechanicsburg. The schedule for both teams reset when the conference aligned into two divisions last year, sending Greeneview to Mechanicsburg for a second straight season.

“This is why you play the game and why you coach the game, to play in ball games like this one,” Forrest said. “It’s going to be a great atmosphere in Jamestown.”

»RELATED: Who’s No. 1 in debut of state football polls?

»RELATED: Week 4 football schedule

Both teams off to hot starts this season.

The Indians have outscored their opponents 140-21 in their first three victories. After entering the half tied at Southeastern last week, the Indians scored 38 points in the first six minutes of the third quarter, winning the game 44-0.

“Southeastern obviously played a really good half of football and took the fight to us there in the first half,” Forrest said. “We challenged our kids in the second half to see what they were made of and they responded with 38 points in less than six minutes. That’s a pretty good response. I was really pleased to see them come back from adversity and respond that way.”

»RELATED: Coldwater, MAC rivals, rally around downed Cavalier

The Indians are pleased to be 3-0, but Forrest and his team knows there plenty of room for improvement. The team focuses on the process, rather than the results, he said.

“It’s about pushing to be the absolute best you can be that day,” Forrest said. “Our focus is to put our best foot forward every time we’re together.”

Greeneview is outscoring its opponents 116-49. The Rams beat Fairbanks 27-14 in Week 3, scoring 21 points in the second quarter and falling behind 7-3 early in the game.

“This year, we’ve been able to have next play mentality. That’s a tribute to the coaches’ really delivering that home, that the next play is the most important play,” Haines said. “It’s a testament to our kids for buying into that.”

»RELATED: Week 3 football power rankings

The Rams are also adjusting to a new coaching staff still getting used to the program, Haines said.

“The kids have done an awesome job buying into all the different coaching styles, new philosophies and new plays,” Haines said. “Our players and our new staff have done an excellent job molding together.”

More than anything, Kasner’s influence on both communities will be on display on Friday night, Haines said.

“He really built both programs,” he said. “He can look at both sidelines and see a coach he molded. I think that’s a really great thing.”

Reader Comments

Next Up in Sports

HS Roundup 12/18: Curtis scores 47 in Xenia win

UC commit Samari Curtis exploded for 47 points in the Xenia’s 100-90 win versus West Carrollton in boys basketball on Tuesday. Daviohn Boccara added 15 points for Xenia. Ryan Brown had 33 points and James Hall 20 for West Carrollton, which had four players in double-digit scoring. Boys Basketball Catholic Central 72, Greenon 43: Mykah Eichey...
HS Scores 12/18: Jefferson boys pick up first win

Boys Basketball Tuesday’s Results Bethel 73, Franklin Monroe 53 Catholic Central 73, Greenon 43: Rice (G) 18; Eichey (CC) 22. Colerain 70, Northwest 64, OT Emmanuel Christian 69, Yellow Springs 36: Davis (EC) 21. Harrison 51, Edgewood 50: Gambrell (E) 23; S. Kinnett (H) 20. Jefferson 60, Dayton Christian 52: Richardson (J) 24. La Salle 46, Lakota...
Wright State beats Morehead State as Gentry, Love lead the way
Wright State beats Morehead State as Gentry, Love lead the way

Wright State still can’t seem to shake its first-half doldrums, allowing Morehead State to take a three-point halftime lead with a late flurry. But Cole Gentry and Louden Love fueled a strong second-half surge to lead the Raiders to a 78-67 win Tuesday. Gentry scored 11 of his 19 points and Love 13 of his 18 after halftime. Love, who limped to...
Cincinnati Bengals place 15th player on injured reserve this season
Cincinnati Bengals place 15th player on injured reserve this season

The Cincinnati Bengals on Tuesday placed rookie linebacker Malik Jefferson on injured reserve with foot injury. Jefferson, the 15th Bengal to be placed on IR this season, injured his foot in Sunday’s win over the Raiders . Jefferson, a third-round pick out of the University of Texas, played in 12 games this season...
Versatile rookie Hubbard blossoming for Bengals
Versatile rookie Hubbard blossoming for Bengals

When Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Bill Lazor walked through the locker room after Sunday’s win against the Oakland Raiders , he paused behind a small group of media members interviewing defensive end Sam Hubbard, caught his attention and mouthed, “I tried.” Hubbard laughed and shouted back,...
More Stories