Shawnee travels to Indian Lake for key division showdown

SPRINGFIELD — The Shawnee High School football program’s road to its first-ever Central Buckeye Conference Mad River Division championship runs through Indian Lake.

The Division IV 10th-ranked Braves (6-1, 2-0) travel to Indian Lake (5-2, 2-0) for a key Mad River Division game on Friday night in Logan County.

Shawnee is seeking its first CBC title since winning the Kenton Trail Division in 2011. With a win against Indian Lake, the Braves will be one step closer to achieving their goal.

“We’ve got a good group of kids,” said Braves coach Rick Meeks. “We’re going to go up there and play ball, be physical and hopefully take care of business.”

Shawnee has won three straight since falling to London in Week 4. The Braves beat North Union 17-13 two weeks ago after a bad week of practice, Meeks said. Shawnee beat Graham 47-7 last week, racking up 299 rushing yards in the victory.

“They’ve responded and last week at practice was really good,” Meeks said.

The Lakers are led by senior dual threat quarterback Burke Lillard. He’s thrown for 1,112 yards and 14 TDs and rushed for 621 yards and seven TDs.

Indian Lake, which has won back-to-back games against Graham and Benjamin Logan by a combined score of 82-7, is seeking its second Mad River title in the last three years.

“Offensively, they’re dangerous,” Meeks said. “They’ve got some fast kids. (Lillard) is a dual threat guy. We’ve got to be able to slow them down.”

Senior running back T.J. Meeks leads the Braves with 908 rushing yards and 11 TDs, including four in Shawnee’s victory over Graham.

“He’s just a tough kid,” Meeks said. “He runs the ball hard, he blocks, and he can catch the ball.”

Meeks is one of five seniors with 100 or more rushing yards. The others are senior Ed Boehmer (299 yards, 5 TDs), Trint Cordle (184 yards, 4 TDs), Braylon Brim (165 yards) and Mitchell Humphreys (104 yards).

“These guys make me look good as a coach,” Meeks said.

Offensively, the Braves must stay on schedule and win the time of possession, Meeks said.

“Our best defense will be a good offense, keeping (Indian Lake) off the field,” he said. “We have to hold on to the ball and not have three-and-outs. We’ve got to take advantage when we have the ball and do something with it.”

Shawnee finished second in the Kenton Trail Division six times between 2012 and 2019 but moved to the Mad River Division this fall.

“It’s on us to get it done,” Meeks said.


Friday’s games

Centerville at Springfield

Shawnee at Indian Lake

Jonathan Alder at Kenton Ridge

Northwestern at Graham

London at Tecumseh

Southeastern at Cedarville

Northeastern at Fairbanks

Madison Plains at Greeneview

West Jefferson at Triad

Mechanicsburg at West Liberty-Salem

Urbana at Bellefontaine

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