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Monroeville Must Have Win over Arch Rivals

When Monroeville and Norwalk St. Paul play there is always something on the line and this year it is no different.

For the Eagles, they must beat St. Paul on Saturday night at Whitney Field to make playoffs. If St. Paul wins, they win the Firelands Conference outright, if not, they might have to share it with Crestview.

The Eagles (6-3,4-2) broke a two-game losing streak with a (40-36) win over Plymouth last Friday night.

Coach Scott Stacher says he thought their passing game was a big factor in the win. “We broke a couple of long runs. We got some stops defensively. They run that double wing stuff very well. We both rush the ball very well. I think our passing, 7 for 10, made the difference. It was a great high school game Friday night,” he said.

Norwalk St. Paul (9-0,6-0), #2 in the Swankonsports.com football coaches poll in the small school division, and number one in the statewide media poll in division seven, is coming off a (44-12) win over Western Reserve.

Stacher says they are very balanced and very solid on offense. “They are very efficient and very consistent. In order to beat them you have to be at your best and play the best game you possibly can defensively and offensively. They have gotten better at the passing game. I know that and they still run the ball very well. We have to be sound in all phases, particularly tackling for one. We just need to sustain our blocks and go back to basics. Hopefully, jump out and put some pressure on them,” said Stacher.

St. Paul quarterback Nick Lukasko has become a very affective passer and Stacher says that makes the Flyers tough to defend. “They have a three year starter at quarterback and receivers on the edge. Their backs run hard. They are very well coached and very disciplined. They have been in the same system for 25 years and they are good at it,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “They know what is expected of them. It is going to be a challenge for us. We have been in the system now for four years and the kids know. It is a rivalry game and it is going to be cold and anything can happen. We are just excited about playing on Saturday night. They are number one ranked in the state. We have a challenge, but we are up to it, we are excited about it.”

It is one the best small school rivalries in the state and Stacher says they are looking toward Saturday night with great anticipation. “I don’t think in all of my years of coaching in regular season play I don’t think I have ever had the opportunity to play number one in the state. It is the only gig in town. It’s Saturday night and there are going to be a lot of extra people there. Even though it is not for all of the marbles as far as the league is concerned. I am a little disappointed there, but other than that for us to get into the playoffs means a lot. One of the coaches said something (Tuesday.) We have lost three games, but they will easily be forgotten if we beat St. Paul on Saturday night,” said Stacher.

Published 10/25/17

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Monroeville Looking Forward

Monroeville needs to stop the slide. They have lost two a row and they need to find the right gear again when they host Plymouth in a Firelands Conference game on Friday night.

They lost to Western Reserve (44-21) last week and coach Scott Stacher isn’t going to sugar coat it. He says they did play well in any phase of the game. “That is a tough one to shake off. We didn’t play a really good game. We came out really well. You know Western came back on us and we didn’t have another answer to it. We tried, but it just wasn’t our night. We didn’t play good, sound, fundamental football in anything we did. You can’t look in the rearview mirror and focus is on the next game which is Plymouth,” said Stacher.

Plymouth (4-4,3-2) won its last two, including a (35-28) win over Mapleton last week.

They are now running the double tight, double wing offense made famous in North Central Ohio by Lucas. Stacher says he has some familiarity with what the Big Red is doing. “It is unique. I have seen it. I coached at Plymouth maybe 10 years ago and they were in the old single wing. It is little like the single wing, but it is more the double wing flexbone look that, well exactly, what Lucas is running,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “They played Lucas and said I guess if we can’t beat them we will join them. They are running the offense very well. It is very different, it is a challenge for sure. Coach Genders has the right thing going there that’s for sure offensively.”

One thing about the double wing is it can be difficult to find the ball carrier until it is too late. Stacher says they would like to keep the ball out that offense’s hands as much as they can. “That line of scrimmage is all important both offensively and defensively. They get that bulldozer effect or the train going forward it is tough to get to the back because they have him surrounded like a scrum and they are pushing from the back. It reeks havoc. An old coach told me once that the best defense is two first downs. We are going to have to keep it for more than two first downs. We have to keep the ball away from them and score on every possession we get,” said Genders.

Published 10/20/17

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Monroeville With a lot to Play For

With three weeks left in the regular season everything is still on the table for the Monroeville Eagles.

They play Western Reserve in a Firelands Conference game on Friday night.

The Eagles (5-2,3-1) fell out of a share of the conference lead with a (26-6) loss to the Crestview Cougars last week. Both of those schools now trail Norwalk St. Paul by a game.

Coach Scott Stacher says against a very good Crestview defense they couldn’t get anything established. “We just couldn’t get anything going. We dropped a long pass there that would have been a touchdown early in the game, but it didn’t materialize. We shot ourselves a couple of times on some penalties. Credit them, they played good defense. That is their bread and butter this year. All of their returning lettermen were on defense and we knew that going in. We just couldn’t get anything going offensively,” said Stacher.

Monroeville is currently tenth in its division seven computer region. The top eight qualify for the postseason. Stacher says everything is still in front of them. “That is what we told the kids. The season is broken up to like three parts. The first part everybody is excited, nobody has played a game, there is no record, and you are excited about playing. The middle of the season you are in a grind and trying to get somewhere. Now, you are either playing for pride or you have some stuff on the plate,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “We could still achieve a playoff spot, which we all want, and a crack week 10 at the conference championship. Everything is right there we just need to play much better, take care of the fundamentals and the little things, and see what happens Friday against Western.”

Western Reserve (3-4,2-2) lost a tough one to South Central last week. Their final drive stalled at the one-yard line as time expired.

Stacher knows what to except from the Roughriders. “He has them play Stoll ball. They are running the football hard. 44 (Gavin Braden) runs very hard, he is a very good running back and they do some other things well too. It is a typical Firelands game with three yards and a cloud of dust, it might be mud this week. I think the key to victory is who makes fewest mistakes and jumps out on top and continues to play hard will win the game,” he said.

Published 10/12/17

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Big One for Monroeville and Crestview

Monroeville visits Crestview for a very important game in the Firelands Conference on Friday night.

The Eagles are tied with Norwalk St. Paul for first place in the conference with Crestview a game back after a (38-7) loss to St. Paul last Friday.

Monroeville, on the other hand, drilled New London (55-13) in a conference game at their place.

Coach Scott Stacher says they are playing well, but they aren’t satisfied. “We are playing some pretty good football, but we have a lot of work to do yet. Some mistakes, some little things we need to clean up. I think that will be the tale of this game Friday night who plays the most fundamentally sound football, makes the fewest mistakes. Whoever plays that kind of game will win,” he said.

After the loss to St. Paul, Stacher believes Crestview is going to be inspired to play Friday night. “I think they are going to be ready to roll, ready to play. Coach Mager has done a great job and their coaching staff. When you get 88 kids out to play football that is a big deal. We are playing them on the road and they play good football. They play very sound and do things very well. So, we are going to have to play a much better game to go in there and beat them on their home field,” said Stacher.

With the Crestview option offense, Stacher says you have to be disciplined on defense, plus they want to use that running game to play a little keep away with the Cougars. “Discipline in the name of the game. You have to be gap sound. They do a lot of shifting, a lot of motion. We have to disciplined on offense to and try and keep the ball away from them. It has always been a close game the last few years. I don’t see any difference this Friday. It is always a great game and it should be a good Friday night football game,” he said.

This is an elimination game in the Firelands Conference. If Crestview loses their title hopes are over. Stacher says these are the kinds of games you want to be part of. “What both teams have worked for all year is to get into games like this. We told our kids this week that it is a big game and this is what you have worked for since January 1, the lifting, the camps, the summer, two a days, and all of that, is to put yourself in this position,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “Both teams still have a chance to win the league. It is what you live for, it is what you coach for, and as athlete it is what you play for. So, bring it on.”

Published 10/06/17

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Monroeville Can Pass Too

Monroeville has developed a reputation as a powerhouse running team, and that is well deserved, but they know they have to be able to throw the ball too in order to be consistently successful.

They host New London in a Firelands Conference game on Friday night.

Last week, the Eagles (4-1,2-0) demolished South Central (45-7) in a conference game amassing more than 500 yards on the ground for the second straight week. Coach Scott Stacher says they were able to throw it some too. “We couldn’t have come out any better in scoring in our first two or three possessions. We did run the football affectively and we also passed the football. I think we were 10 or 11 of 14, so for us that is pretty darn good and we will take that every night passing with that efficiency and 170 yards passing,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “We did what we needed to do. We played really well defensively and limited them to minimal yards. I think it was another learning experience for us. Each week we are going to have to get better playing in the Firelands.”

Although the Eagles want to count on their run game, Stacher says they have to be able to pass too or the opponent is going to make it more difficult for them to run the ball. “We need to be more efficient in the passing game to keep our running game opened up. If we can’t we are going to get 11 guys packed in the box and it is going to be hard to run. We do have to have some sort of balance that’s for sure,” he said.

It has been a week of turmoil at New London (1-5,0-2) resulting in the mid-season resignation of head coach Brad Pickens. The Wildcats have lost back to back games in the conference in which they have not scored. Norwalk St. Paul beat them (63-0) in their first conference game and Western Reserve hammered them (49-0) last week. The New London administration has had no comment about the situation other than to say Pickens remains as a member of the teaching staff. Girls’ basketball coach Eric Mitchell is the interim coach.

Stacher says it will be important for them to maintain their focus in the game with New London. “They have not played well. I think they are a young team. They have some new kids that are playing football and some kids that didn’t go out. In high school football every year that dynamic changes and you never know what’s going to happen at the beginning of the year let alone mid season. They are trying to find their identity. We just have to maintain what we are doing because after this week we have four really tough games going down the stretch,” said Stacher.

Published 9/28/17

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Monroeville Wants to Quick Start

Monroeville looks like a football team that is going to be really competitive again this season.

Last week, they established a school record for points in beating Mapleton (66-41) in a Firelands Conference game, running for nearly 600 yards in the process.

Coach Scott Stacher says they really turned it on in the second half. “We played a whale of a second half. It was a contrast of a passing game versus a ground game. We broke out a couple of long runs. I think we had eight or nine plays over 20 yards, we had a couple over 70 yards. We had a kid rush for 397 yards. I think as a team we rushed for 594 or something like that. The kids did a great job the second half running the ball,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “Credit to Mapleton, the Pharmer kid is a really good quarterback. We just got a couple more possessions. We got a pick six which helped. I think we intercepted him three times. All in all, we started slow, but ended really good in the second half.”

The Monroeville (3-1,1-0) is at South Central (2-2,0-1) in a conference game on Friday night. The Trojans lost to Plymouth (56-29) last week, when they allowed more than 500 yards on the ground to the Big Red.

Stacher says the Trojans have some athletes and they are playing with a lot of spirit. “They have some weapons. They have a lot more kids out this year with a new, young coach. Enthusiasm is running high. We are on their turf and that will be a challenge is itself. It is going to be a tough Firelands Conference game and we just need to come out and not start slow and play our brand of football,” he said.

For them Stacher says they need to get off to a better start than they have been this year. He says it might be very important. “That could be key. If we could jump out 7-0 and maybe get a turnover here and there and jump out maybe a couple of scores and just keep that going. Last year, I think we scored in eight of our first 10 games, first possession. We just need to go out and do the same thing on Friday night,” said Stacher.

Published 9/22/17

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Monroeville Has to Clean Things up

Outside of Norwalk St. Paul, Monroeville has been the best team in the Firelands Conference over the last two seasons. More than half of their losses over the last two years are to the Flyers.

The good news is they do not play them this week, but they do host a pretty good Mapleton football team.

Last week, the Eagles (2-1) did not play well in the second half and lost to Maragretta (35-12) in non-conference play.

Coach Scott Stacher says they just made too many mistakes to have a chance to win. “Yeah it got away from us. There were too many turnovers. We just didn’t play very well as a team, but credit Maragretta they played a very good game. They had a kid come back from suspension that was a pretty good athlete and we just didn’t contain him very well. They played a very good game. They could easily be 3-0 right now and they are a very good team. We just shot ourselves in the foot too many times to beat a very good team,” said Stacher.

The Eagles have some talent, but they have not been consistent in their execution and Stacher says that has to change this week. “We have a couple of injuries not making any excuses. It is execution. It is getting back to what we do. It is the little things like sustaining blocks is a big one for us and tackling, we did a poor job tackling. Those are fixable and we have to do a better job this week against Mapleton,” he said.

Mapleton (2-1) won their second straight game last week (47-21) over Rittman in non-conference action.

Stacher says they have a lot of kids they have to contain, especially quarterback Logan Pharmer. “The Mounties are a very good football team. They have a quarterback that has been back for them for three years now. Phramer is very good. He can throw the ball around as good as any quarterback we will see in the area and he has some good skill and players around him,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “They have a good running back and some linemen that are back. So, Mapleton is a really good team. We have to improve on our execution and sustaining blocks. We have to tackle very well and we have to limit their big plays, that’s for darn sure.”

Published 9/15/17

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Monroeville Must Control Bears Run Game

Monroeville hits the road for the first time this season as they travel to Margaretta for a non-conference game on Friday.

The Eagles (2-0) rallied in the second half to beat Sandusky St. Mary’s (26-19) last week.

Coach Scott Stacher says they made a lot of mistakes that put them down in the game, but they played a better second half. “It was pretty tough in the first half and we made some mistakes, but St. Mary’s is a very well coached team and a decent team and in the second half luckily we put some things together and protected the ball a little bit better and got our ground game going. All in all it was a great game for the fans, but still we need to do a lot of things better in order to beat Margaretta this week,” he said.

Defensively, Stacher says they have done some good things, but they have become better tacklers if they are going to be competitive with some of the good teams they play. “I think our defense is doing a really good job. Our front four is doing an excellent job. Our linebacking corps is really good I think. We have Ryan Watt, who has been a four year starter at middle backer, so he is our captain on the field when it comes to the defense,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “He is making all of the calls. He is doing a really good job of putting us in the positions we need to be in. Our db’s are coming along very well. Defensively, I like the progress we are making we just need to tackle a little bit better. It’s back to basics again.”

Margaretta (0-2) lost a tough one last week when Western Reserve edged them (29-28) on week two. They missed a two point conversion that would have given them the lead.

Stacher says they are going to have to plug the holes and not allow the Polar Bears the control the game with their running game. “If we can hold onto the ball this week, get some good blocks on the line and control that line of scrimmage and cut down the running lanes. Hilton is a really good running back, a 2,000 yard rusher. If we can stop those rushing lanes for him and put some pressure on the quarterback and make him throw it in a hurry we could be in pretty good shape defensively,” said Stacher.

And that goes for when they have the ball too. He says they have to take charge of that point of attack. “I think offensively and defensively whoever controls those lines of scrimmage is definitely going to win the game that is for sure,” he said.

Published 9/07/17

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Monroeville Working on Getting Better

Monroeville is on its way to becoming one of the more solid small school football programs in North Central Ohio again.

They walloped Crestline (47-18) last week, calling off the dogs in the second half. They host Sandusky St. Mary’s in another non-conference game on Friday night at Marsh Field.

The Eagles led (40-0) in the second quarter last week and coach Scott Stacker says they were able to play a lot of kids. “We started off fast and did what needed to do in the first half. We rushed the ball very well and played tremendous defense. We kind of put it in the bank and put our freshmen in the whole second half and let them roll with it. It was good for them to see action as well,” said Stacker.

When it comes to execution, Stacker says their defense was top notch last week, but they still have to work a little on that offense, especially the pass game. “Our offensive line is doing very well along with our D-line and backers. I thought defensively we played an outstanding game. Offensively we have some things to work on. We worked a little bit on our passing game. We still need to get better at that. It was running back by committee and hopefully we will stay healthy and add a couple more to the stable,” he said.

Monroeville had two backs go over 100 yards each last week against Crestline.

Norwalk St. Paul handled Sandusky St. Mary’s (44-0) last Saturday night, holding the Panthers to just 22 total yards.

However, Stacker says he believes the Panthers have the personnel to give them a very good game. “I think we are going to see a very spirited game. I respect the heck out of St. Mary’s. The coaching staff is very good. The kids are very well coached. They some big kids. They have some athletic kids too. I think they are going to give us a game,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “It is one of those teams that is good enough and you can’t leave in the game. They do a lot of things very well, so I expect a very good game from St. Mary’s. I know St. Paul ran the ball on them pretty good. The entire game they didn’t take their defense out against them. I think St. Mary’s is a good week two opponent.”

Published 9/01/17

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Monroeville Working on Fundamentals

Monroeville is coming off two very good seasons, but this season the Eagles are a lot younger than they have been the last couple years, so there is going to be a little bit of a maturing process.

They host Crestline in their first regular season game on Friday night at Marsh Field.

Coach Scott Stacher says football is a special time of the year and he says he can’t wait to get started. “It feels really good it was like I was singing Christmas tunes this week. It is like it is Christmas time again when it comes time for football. There are two seasons football season and waiting for football season, so it is finally here,” he said.

Stacher says this month has been a process of getting some younger players used to the speed and complexity of high school varsity football. “We have gotten better, but we still have a ways to go. We traded out basically 15 seniors from last year’s team for 15 freshmen this year. So, we have a bigger group of younger kids. We have spent a lot more time teaching these kids, which we always do away. The dynamics are just different. There is always a different family dynamic. Everybody is coming along nicely,” said Stacher.

The exciting things about football are the long runs and the great catches or the big hits, but it is the fundamental elements that win games at every level. Stacher says they have to be better at those elements of the game. “We have to be better at sustaining blocks and we have to be better at wrapping up and tackling. Be more fundamental. Those are things we need desperately to be better at,” he said.

Monroeville made the playoffs in 2016 and they hammered Crestline (47-13) along the way. The Bulldogs ended up (4-6) on the season last year. This year Stacher says the Bulldogs are going to play hard and be pretty good on defense. “They are lower in numbers than us, but they do play hard. They have switched defenses to a “50.” They play a little more sound defensively than they do offensively,” he told Swankonsports.com on Monday, “I think they miss their quarterback from last year. They are going to put out all they have got. It should be a decent game for game one. Hopefully both of us can get out injury free and move to week two with ways to improve.”

Published 8/22/17

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Rivals Clash for Second Time This Season

  

          Monroeville plays arch rival Norwalk St. Paul for the second time this year on Saturday night at Perkins Firelands Regional Medical Center Stadium in the division seven regional semi finals of the high school football playoffs.

          In their first meeting on October 29 at Monroeville the Flyers won (14-8) to claim the outright Firelands Conference title.

          Last week, Monroeville drilled Windman (55-6) in a first round game at home.  Coach Scott Stacher says they were able to get off to a quick start and never look back.  “We came out and caused a fumble on the second play of the game and the next play we put it in.  I think we scored on our first five possessions, something like that.  We played a really good game,” he said.
          When it comes to the rematch, Stacher says they just have to make a few more plays because he thinks it is going to be a close one again on Saturday.  “We just need to minimize mistakes.  We need to clean up some things and just play with a little more intensity.  It is going to be a close game either way.  It might be a play here or there for either team.  That is what makes playoff games so great.  When you combined them with a conference foe and a rivalry game you have three for the price of one this week,” he said.

          The biggest two plays of the conference title game two weeks ago came when St. Paul caused a fumble on a kick return.  Then quarterback Nick Lukasko found Paul Pearce for a leaping grab in the end zone with 25 seconds left in the half.  There was no scoring in the second half of the game.

          Stacher says the kicking game is going to be pretty big in the rematch too.  “They returned a couple on us and got decent field position.  We had a little mistake their on a punt.  It wasn’t downed on the three and they picked it up, a smart play on their part and ran it out to the 25, so that is a little better field position.  The kicking game is a big deal and it will probably make a difference in a Saturday night’s game for sure,” said Stacher.

          Monroeville might get a boost in the return of running back Blake Anderson, who broke his leg seven weeks ago, but scored a TD last week against Widham.  Stacher says his presence can be a huge boost for them.  “We hope it is going to be a big factor.  He gets better every day.  He has been working hard for the last few weeks trying to get back into a game.  I am so happy for Blake just to make it back after a broken leg in week five to be able to at least run the ball and score.  So, I’m super happy for the kid.  I have never seen our kids celebrate any more in the end zone, and be happier for him, than when he scored that touchdown,” said Stacher.

St. Paul beat Monroeville (28-6) in the first round of the playoffs last year.  They also won the previous three meetings in the playoffs between the two rivals (49-21) in a regional semi final game in 2007, (30-15) in regional final in 2004 and (17-14) in another regional final back in 1999.

Stacher likes playing at Perkins and believes it will be a great atmosphere come Saturday night.  “It is a great site. Perkins’ stadium is just a beautiful place to play.  We will have our fans on our sidelines as well as they will.  I think we will have a big crowd with where it is played and the significance of the game.  I think it is going to be an electric atmosphere.  It is high school kids, so we will see what happens.  Hopefully nerves don’t get to us.  We have been in some playoff games now.  We are a little bit seasoned, not as much as they are.  It is going to be a great game, great atmosphere.  Hopefully we can minimize mistakes, clean up some things, and go after them,” said Stacher.

 

Published 11/09/16

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Ground Game Key in Monroeville Playoff Game

  

          Monroeville, the Firelands Conference runner-up, entertains Windham in a first round playoff game in division seven on Saturday night at Marsh Field.

          It is the second year in a row for the Eagles in the playoffs.  They lost last year on the road in week one to arch rival Norwalk St. Paul.

          Coach Scott Stacher says it is nice to be home.  “I think it is going to be a huge factor for us.  Playing at home is a great thing. Anybody that was at the game last Friday it was just electric.  We had like 2,500 fans there.  I keep telling people it is just great being in Monroeville.  Football is the only gig in town on Friday although it happens to be Saturday this week.  I don’t know how well Windham travels, but I know we will travel well at home.  Our fans will be ready to rock the house on Saturday night,” he said.

          Windham (7-3) is a team that likes to run the ball and is very good it.  The Bombers have averaged more than 250 yards per game on the ground this year.  Stacher says they have some quick and athletic backs.  “They are kind of like what we were a couple of years ago.  They have a lot of young players, very good players.  They run a wing-T style offense.  They run a 4-4 style defense.  They are big up front with their offensive and defensive lines.  They have a couple of quick kids, number 1, one of their backs, is the coach’s son, he is super quick in space especially.  Number four is very fast.  So, they have a couple of really good, fast athletes,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “Their quarterback as a decent arm.  They run the ball very well.  Yardage wise I think they have something like 2.500 yards rushing, similar to what we have.  It is going to be a really good game, an exciting game, a tough four-five match up.  We are looking forward to the challenge, especially at home.”

          A team with wing-T action is going to feature a lot of fakes in the backfield and Stacher says they are going to have to be very focused on their keys and not peaking in the backfield.  “That is what we have noticed on film they are a big play team.  You get a stop, you get a stop and somebody gets out of line.  Big plays are what they are about.  Just like us.  We run some things that are wing-T stylish.  I take a lot of my football roots from the running game, the wing-T, the T, and mixing in a little bit with what we do out of the “I.”  We do have some wings in some situations also.  Those types of blocking techniques and schemes if you get out of alignment it could be a long night,” he said.

 

Published 11/04/16

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Monroeville Clashes With St. Paul

  

          You almost never get a match-up like this one a battle of undefeated teams for a conference championship on the final week of the season.

          It reminds me of my youth and the great wars between Ohio State and Michigan or Oklahoma and Nebraska in college football.

          This time it is Monroeville hosting Norwalk St. Paul for the Firelands Conference title at Marsh Field in Monroeville on Friday night.

          “As far as I know there has never been a 9-0 versus 9-0 in this area.  That’s impressive, so yes it is great to be involved in it,” said Monroeville coach Scott Stacher.

          St. Paul, (9-0,6-0), #2 in the Swankonsports.com football coaches poll in the small school division, beat South Central (35-0) last week to keep their record unblemished.

          They have scored at least 35 points in five of their six leagues so far.  The exception being a (14-13) win over Crestview three weeks ago.  They average six TD’s a game in league play.

          Stacher says the Flyers are going to force you to stop them from running the football.  “Offensively I expect them to run, and run, and run.  They will pass a little bit.  They are good at what they do.  They have been very good in the past at what they do.  There is no sense in changing the formula.  It is like the outboard motor theory if you own a boat if it runs don’t fix it, don’t touch it, don’t even look at it,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “They are really good at what they do.  They have a program there and coach Livengood and his staff has done a great job over the years of keeping that together.  So, I expect them to much of the same.”

          Stacher adds that one good defensive play against St. Paul, even one that results in a loss of yardage, isn’t going to be enough.  “Our defense has been playing very good lately.  It is a challenge to our defense to be able to do that.  It is like derailing a train.  If you get one car off the track the train can still pull it, so you better get two or three of them off.  St. Paul is real good at keep coming at you, keep coming at you.  You have to string several good defensive plays together to get them off the field and get into your own offense,” says Stacher.

          Monroeville (9-0,6-0), #5 in our poll, has scored a lot of points too.  They average five touchdowns a game in Firelands Conference play.

          Stacher says they will be facing a very good defense that has three shutouts to its credit. 

          St. Paul has only allowed three scores in two games this season and in one those the scores came in the fourth quarter of a blow out.  Stacher says their execution when they have the ball is going to have to be very, very good.  “I think they fly around to the ball very well.  Again they are very well coached, they are disciplined and ready their keys well.  Our offense this year has been doing a good job moving the ball, better than last year, even without Blake (Anderson) and some of our starters in.  We have managed to have that next man up mentality so we have been able to maintain some drives and put some points up.  Our offense is going to have to be flawless as well as our defense in order to come out with a victory on Friday night,” said Stacher.

          There will be a lot of emotion in this game and Stacher says they can not allow that to overrun them.  “It is always a factor on both sides of the ball.  I mean we are all going to be fired up.  We will see how fast we can get that knocked out of us if it is the first play or the second play or whatever it is.  We need to get going and get into a groove as quickly as we can,” he said.

 

Published 10/27/16

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Monroeville Remains Unbeaten

 

          Monroeville is one of only five schools among the 73 football teams we cover on Swankonsports.com that remain unbeaten after eight weeks of the season.

          One of the others is Norwalk St. Paul and the Eagles share the lead in the Firelands Conference with the Flyers and play them next week in their traditional regular season finale.

          First they play at home against Western Reserve (2-6,2-3) on Friday night.

          Last Friday, the Eagles scored with less than two minutes to play on a 10-yard run by sophomore quarterback Adam Rogers to beat Crestview (18-14) in a conference game.

Coach Scott Stacher says one of things he is the most proud of his team is it perseverance.  “We are getting much better at not quitting.  Perseverance was the word I used (Friday) night that these kids have.  We have overcome a lot of things this year with injuries and so forth.  We were down by two scores and we needed a big play.  We work on tailback pass, we have run that play since I have been here for three years and have never used it, and we pulled it out.  We run it in practice every week for a fun thing, pulled it out and it goes like 77 yards.  That was a momentum changer,” he told Swankonsports.com on Saturday, “We got the ball back late in the game with four minutes left and put a drive together.  Adam Rogers, he is a sophomore kid, did a great job moving the ball down the field, made the right decisions, then ran an option play, and he went in untouched from the 10.”

          Every team faces some adversity during a season and the Eagles have had to battle through some injuries.  Stacher says his kids have adapted to some new positions in some cases and have done the job.  “In the Plymouth game we lost our starting fullback and then Blake (Anderson) goes down, so there goes are whole “I” backfield.  We have had a tight end go down and some other things, but these kids have stepped up.  We have had to switch a couple positions, or move a guy here in there.  When you are playing D-7 football you don’t have the whole plethora of multiple players to choose from and pick from, but these kids have answered the bell for sure,” said Stacher.

          Monroeville (8-0,5-0) plays at home against Western Reserve.  The Rough Riders have won their last two games, including beating South Central (35-28) last week.

          Monroeville lost their last three regular season games last year, including (14-7) to Western Reserve.  Stacher says they have the have better focus.  “We told the kids from day one this year that every game matters.  Last year, we were at a point when we were 6-1 and we didn’t do as well as we would have liked to down the stretch.  Yeah, we made it to the playoffs and that was a goal of the kids, but we didn’t finish the season like we wanted to and this year I think they are more focused than ever.  Western is a good team.  They have a good running game.  They have won a few games here back to back.  Coach Stall has them going in the right direction again.  It is a trap game and it is something we are going to watch and work hard this week.  Luckily it is at home.  We haven’t beaten Western in a couple of years.  I think the kids have enough to grasp and be focused on,” said Stacher.

 

Published 10/17/16

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Monroeville and Crestview Play Key Game in Firelands

  

          Monroeville shares the Firelands Conference lead with Norwalk St. Paul with Crestview only a game back after St. Paul beat the Cougars by a point last Saturday.

          The Eagles (7-0,4-0) on the other hand drilled New London (46-13) in Conference play last week.  Coach Scott Stacher says they caught a break last week.  “Our defense came to play against New London.  We set the tone early and had some tackles.  They were without Molnar, who gave me nightmares.  He is a super player on both offense and defense to take nothing away from our defense, which played well, but Molnar is a special player,” he said.

          Monroeville is ranked number four in the state in division seven in the statewide media poll, but Stacher says they are not concerned by that.  “We tell the kids those are just predictions that are done by the media.  It is just nice to be considered in the mix right now, but we have got a lot more work ahead of us.  Every week in the Firelands is tough, especially this week with Crestview.  We have our work cut out for us.  Like I said it is nice to recognized, but that is on paper and we have to go out and prove ourselves,” he said.

          Stacher says Crestview can do a lot of things when they have the ball in their hands.  “Offensively they have some weapons.  They do a lot of motion and shifting and all of that stuff.  It is just a different team,” he said.

          Crestview (5-2,3-1) lost a tough one at Whitney Field last week when St. Paul beat them (14-13,) but Stacher knows the Cougars are very good on defense.  He says they have been very tough to score on.  “People forget, but they are really good on defense.  You allow a Mapleton team to only score twice, you have had shutouts during the year, you allow St. Paul to score only two touchdowns, their defense is very good.  They have some really good players going both ways even though they have 73 kids they have their 11 best on the field at once,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “The defensive line is good, the linebackers are good.  Every week is different and this is a big challenge for us.  It is going to fun to see where we are at at this stage in the game.  It’s anybody’s ball game they are a very, very good team and so are we.”

          Stacher calls the Cougars versatile on defense and he says they have matured well as a team this fall.  “They do a lot of things on defense well.  Their front four plays well.  Their linebackers read their keys well and their corners and defensive backs play very well in coverage.  They are experienced all of those sophomores and juniors last year had to play a lot and now I would consider them mostly seniors at this late stage in the game.  Experience does count a lot and they have been in a system that they understand for a couple of years now both offensively and defensively.  Coach Mager and his staff have done a very, very nice job of getting the kids to play their style of football and play fundamentally sound and I think that is a key for them they are good fundamentally.  They tackle well, they block well, and they do the little things well too,” said Stacher.

 

Published 10/12/16

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Monroeville Respects New London

  

          Right now, Monroeville shares the Firelands Conference lead with Norwalk St. Paul and Crestview, the other two play each other Saturday, while the Eagles play at New London on Friday.

          Monroeville kept their share with a (35-0) shutout of South Central last week.  Coach Scott Stacher says the defense did a tremendous job.  “I think we played really good football, especially defensively.  Coach Ness, our defensive coordinator, Brad Dunlap and Chris McDonald, who handle a lot of the defense, did an excellent job of putting together our defensive game plan.  Offensively we just made some tweaks to some things, did some things we have always been doing in practice, and implemented them, and executed very well,” said Stacher.

          Leading rusher Blake Anderson injured his leg in a (33-28) win over Mapleton two weeks ago.  Colton Millis replaced him and scored three touchdowns against South Central.

          It seems the Monroeville (6-0,3-0) defense has been getting better this year.  Stacher says they will be challenged this week when they play New London.  “Defensively we have been getting better each and every year.  I think we held South Central to something like 113 yards total offense,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “We have to have that same defensive mentality this week because they have an excellent, excellent player in number two, the Molnar kid.  He is really good on offense and on defense.  He has kind of been a nightmare to us.  There are a number of good kids on New London’s team.  They are a good football club.”

          New London (2-4,1-2) is coming off a (48-28) win over Western Reserve in conference play last week.  The Wildcats have shown the ability to score points pretty consistently this year.  Stacher this week is as important as any other.  “You know how the saying is respect everyone, fear no one.  You tell the kids that every game matters, especially in the Firelands Conference.  I believe you are going to have to run the table this year and not have an “L” at the end of your record.  So, we are focused on New London this week,” he said.

          This is Stacher’s third season at Monroeville after a stint as an assistant at Genoa.  He believes the Firelands Conference is an outstanding football league.  “You look at St. Paul, always in the state playoffs, doing well there, Crestview, who I believe is an up and coming team, when you have 73 kids on your roster.  Every team New London, South Central, Plymouth, Western, and Mapleton even surprised Crestview last week. We have managed to rebuild some things and do some things right.  There are a lot of teams in the mix.  You have to bring it every week.”

 

Published 10/07/16

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Monroeville Tries to Stay Unbeaten

  

          Monroeville, along with Norwalk St. Paul and Crestview, share first place in the Firelands Conference after two weeks of conference play.

          The Eagles (5-0,2-0) host South Central (2-3,1-1) in a conference game on Friday night.

          Last week, the Eagles hung on to beat Mapleton (33-28) in a Firelands Conference game.  Coach Scott Stacher says they showed some guts in getting the win.  “Our kids have not had to do that this year.  It was a great high school football game.  Going down two scores we didn’t even touch the ball for the first seven, eight minutes of the first quarter.  We took the ball and drove down on our first drive and scored.  After that getting the score right at the end of the half and then getting the score at the start of the third to tie things up.  The kids came through really well,” he said.

          After gaining well over 200 yards in the game, Monroeville running back Blake Anderson went down with a leg injury in the Mapleton game.  However, Stacher is confident they have some backs that can do the job in his absence.  “He is a great back.  I think he had somewhere between 800 and 900 yards and probably 13 scores.  It is a big loss for us, but we have some other backs in Colton Millis, Logan Benfer, and Dominic Ruffing to handle that job really well.  They are a little bit of different kind of back.  We go from more thunder to a little more lightning because they are pretty darn fast.  We will see how it works out.  We need to tweak some things and hopefully everybody can keep their act together until he gets back,” he said.

          South Central beat Plymouth in overtime (33-27) for the second straight year last week when quarterback Aaron Lamoreaex scored in the extra period.

          Stacher says the Trojans have some athletes and some speed and they are going to have be solid in order to win.  “South Central is a good ball club.  All of these ball clubs in the Firelands have been good this year.  South Central is no easy team by any means.  Lamoreaex comes back at quarterback, his brother at receiver, #5 (Cristiano Murphy) is pretty fast.  They have a lot of team speed,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday evening, “We don’t want to get into an overtime game with them.  They have played well.  They have some big guys on the line that are 210, 220, 230, so.  It is going to be a really good game, so hopefully we can minimize any mistakes.  They have some speed and have run some kicks and punts back.  They make the most of their opportunities that’s for sure.”

 

Published 9/29/16

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Monroeville Must Contain Mapleton Pass Game

  

          Monroeville bested Plymouth last week, but they face a different kind of challenge this Friday night at Mapleton against the Mounties.

          Plymouth wants to run the ball, but last week the Eagles were able to slow them down in a (35-21) win on the opening night of Firelands Conference play.

          Coach Scott Stacher says they were able to keep that Big Red running attack in check just enough.  “It was a big win.  My hat is off to Plymouth they played a very physical game.  It was a ball game and coach Genders has them playing well.  They are just tough and rugged.  Both sides got dinged up.  We are ready to go with Mapleton this week,” he said.

          Every team has a least a few injuries every fall and Stacher feels they have pretty good depth for a small school.  “Next man up is our motto and everybody’s motto.  You get guys injured and you have to be ready to play.” He told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “This week will be tough in particular because Mapleton is a very good team.  It is a very good young quarterback.  They throw the ball well.  They do some things really good.  In the Firelands every week you have to come out and play your best game.”

          Mapleton outscored New London (56-30) last week in Firelands Conference action in a game that really wasn’t that close.  Stacher says the Mounties have a dangerous quarterback in Jake Farmer.  “They have a very good passing game.  The quarterback we faced last year as a freshman and now he is a sophomore.  He is a little bit bigger and a lot more experienced and equally as dangerous if not more than last year.  We have our job cut out for us to slow that offense down that is for sure,” he said.

          Stacher says they must keep Farmer contained in the pocket or he is going to have another big game at their expense.  Plus, he says they want to play a little keep away.  “He is fast.  I think he is a hurdles guy and he is just fast.  We definitely have to contain him.  We definitely have to play tough, hard nosed football on the perimeter with the receivers.  Sometimes the best defense is two first downs.  Offensively we have to play our game and grind the ball out and just play physical,” he said.

 

Published 9/23/16

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Monroeville Takes Act to Plymouth

  

          Monroeville has been one the best small school football teams in North Central Ohio over the first three weeks and they understand they can’t stand still.

          The Eagles (3-0) play at Plymouth (2-1) in the Firelands Conference opener for both schools on Friday night.

          After a (28-16) win over Margaretta last week, coach Scott Stacher says they are pleased.  “We are happy with the start of the season, but still striving to do better.  We still have some improvement to make, a lot of improvement to make.  We are just learning from our mistakes, but happy to be 3-0 and where we are at heading into conference play right now,” said Stacher.

Trey also beat Crestline (47-13) to start the season and Sandusky St. Mary’s (41-7) on week two, but Stacher says they are not satisfied with their level of play.  “We are not complacent by any means.  These kids have goals this year.  They want to be better than they were last year.  With the Firelands you can’t be complacent because any week you could lose.  Despite what people might think the Firelands Conference is a tough conference, especially for D-7 and D-6 schools,” he told Swankonsports.com, “It’s like being thrown into a meat grinder and if you aren’t ready to play they are going to knock you off and this week is no exception because Plymouth is very good team.  They have started out 2-1 and played some good teams.  They play a tough brand of physical football.  We are going to their place and it should be an exciting game.”

          Plymouth coming off a (37-20) win at Willard and they looked good to.  Their only setback coming week two to Riverdale (28-14,) but they were able to battle back.

          Stacher says this is going to be a game between two teams that count on running the football.  “We are both run first football teams.  Basically that is what the Firelands is.  It is changing more and more.  This is my third year as coach at Monroeville.  When I started seven out of 10 teams were under center teams and were running the ball and now this year seven of 10 teams we face are in the shotgun and spread formations, so we are one of the minorities.  Form what we have seen on film Plymouth is one of those shotgun teams, but they still favor the run and try and pound it at you,” he said.

 

Published 9/15/16

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Monroeville Doing it up Front

  

          Monroeville has won both of its games so far this season and they have scored over 40 points in both.

          That’s a good start.

          They beat Sandusky St. Mary’s (41-7) last Saturday night at Strobel Field in Sandusky.

          Coach Scott Stacher says the coaching staff did a good job putting the game plan together and kids executed it.  “Saturday night went according to plan.  We played super defense, so hats off to all of our coaches.  In particular to Tyler Metzger, who is our defensive coordinator, and Brad Dunlap, Chris McDonald, Curt Weber, my son, and myself.  The defense was outstanding.  I think we limited them to 50 some yards rushing and less than 200 yards total offense,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “We got together and scored on our first four possessions in the first half.  Blake Anderson had over 200 yards.  He has 360, 370 for the season in two games, so he is back on track.  St. Mary’s never quit.  They played a good game and are a good team and they are going to win some ballgames this year.  It was a great night to play at Strobel Field.”

          When you are running the ball like that there are some good things happening in the trenches.  Stacher is really proud of the big guys.  “The guys up front are doing the job.  Brad Dunlap and myself, Brad has the defensive line and I have the offensive line.  The offensive line has kind of been my baby since I started coaching being one before.  I just take it personal.  We try to do the best we can.  When you are a run oriented team and you are still under center.  Three yards and a cloud of dust, Woody Hayes style football.  It’s kind of rare to see anymore.  It’s a physical game, so we try and play a physical brand of football,” said Stacher.

          Margaretta (1-1) plays at Monroeville on Friday night in a non-conference game.  The Polar Bears beat Western Reserve (44-33) in their second week game.

          Stacher says it will be a tough game for them.  “They will be a challenge, they are an “SBC” team.  Not much to say about Margaretta except we are looking forward to playing them,” he said.

 

Published 9/07/16

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Monroeville Expects a Better St. Mary’s

  

          Monroeville plays at Sandusky St. Mary’s on Saturday night in a battle between two football teams that made the small school playoffs a year ago.

          On the opening Friday, Monroeville belted Crestline (47-13) in their first game.  Coach Scott Stacher says they did some good things against the Bulldogs, but they can clearly still get better.  “It was a good effort for us.  Crestline didn’t have the numbers, but they played hard and they never quit.  It was a good test for us, especially the first half and then I think we just wore them down a little bit.  We made some mistakes and we have some room for improvement.  It was a good week one for us.  It is always good to come out with a win to start the season,” he said.

         Good teams are ones that consistently improve and Stacher says they have been working hard.  He says they must be better tacklers.  “Practice has gone petty well this week.  We have been grinding away on fundamentals and trying to get better on what we do, some blocking schemes.  We have had more emphasis on tackling.  We have to do a better job on tackling.  So, we have done all of that this week.  It just threw us out of sink a little bit with it being an extra day this week playing on Saturday night.  Strobel Field on Saturday night, it doesn’t get much better than that for high school football,” said Stacher.

          Sandusky St. Mary’s started their season last Saturday with a (34-0) loss to Norwalk St. Paul.  However, Stacher says he believes the Panthers are a lot better team than that score would show.  “I think St. Mary’s is a good team.  They are very well coached.  I think the score is not indicative of the game.  It got away from them a little bit early,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “St. Paul scored quick and then and I think wore on them mentally a little bit.  They did drive the ball against St. Paul and do some very good things against them.  St. Mary’s is a good team.  They were a playoff team last year and possibly a playoff team this year.  I know they will regroup this week.  It will be a very good high school football game come Saturday night between two playoff teams from last year.”

 

Published 9/02/16

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Monroeville, St. Paul, Stage Two

 

          Monroeville found out last week that little mistakes against Norwalk St. Paul turn into big errors in a hurry.  They may not have to play a perfect game this Friday, but pretty close.

          The Eagles (6-4) were thumped by their arch rivals (42-0) in their final regular season game last Saturday now they must make the short trip down route 20 to Whitney Field to face the Flyers again on Friday night, this time in the division seven regional quarterfinals.

          Monroeville is making its 14th playoff appearance, but their first since 2010, and their first under any coach other than Steve Ringholtz.  Current head coach Scott Stacher says this has already been a season of accomplishment for the Eagles.  "I am very pleased and very blessed to be in Monroeville with these kids.  Last year and the year before they were 1-9 and these kids have come a long way to make the playoffs.  A lot of people didn't think it would happen, but these kids just kept working hard and believing.  It so cool, especially on a beautiful day like today, to be out at football practice," he said.

          Against St. Paul Stacher says you just can't afford to make any mistakes, no matter how small they may seem.  "St. Paul and coach Livengood and those kids have a program.  They are doing to same thing year and after year.  We just have to do a better job of matching their intensity and clean up some little mistakes that we made throughout the game like sustaining our blocks or catching the ball.  Just the simple things of blocking and tackling," he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, "With St. Paul you just have to weather the storm.  They get on you quick, just like they did at the end of the half.  We went three and out and got a punt blocked and in 30 some seconds we are down another 14.  We could have gone in at halftime 14-0 or we dropped a ball at the goal line, 14-7.  If we can do a better job hanging with them and weathering their storm it might be a different outcome."

          St. Paul (9-1), #2 in the final Swankonsports.com football coaches poll in the small school division, is making its 17th playoff appearance and their fourth in a row.  They were state runners-up last year.

          Stacher says it they can avoid getting blown out early and make this a game in the fourth quarter they have a chance.  "We did a very good job defensively holding their rushing attack to 100 some yards, which I don't think anyone has done this year.  On offense we had two 15 play drives against them and shot ourselves in the foot in the red zone a couple of times and didn't score.  It could be a different game and we are using those as positives and try and clean up our mistakes and build on it.  Get us into that fourth quarter and we will see what happens," he said.

 

Published 11/04/15

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Improved Monroeville Plays Biggest Rival

 

          Monroeville and Norwalk St. Paul is like Ohio State and Michigan and like the team who shares a similar helmet design, Monroeville is much improved and better equipped to offer more of a challenge.

          Two weeks ago the schools where in a share of first place in the Firelands Conference and it looked like Saturday night's match up might rekindle the old days.  However, Monroeville has lost to the last two weeks to Crestview (21-12) and last week to Western Reserve (14-7) to give St. Paul the outright title.  "It was just a tough loss.  We are still trying to get over it a little bit.  Like I told our kids, you know, the sun comes up in the morning and we are ready to go again.  We are back to work and we have had a decent week of practice so far.  We are a good team, we are just not good enough to make mistakes and overcome them, so we are better.  These kids are learning as we go because they have not been there before.  The record, a chance to get in the playoffs, the hype and everything, we are learning, it's a good thing," said Monroeville coach Scott Stacher.

          There is no question this is the biggest game on the Monroeville schedule and Stacher says they will be ready to play their best.  "These kids are amped up.  It is just a great rivalry.  We hope to make it better as we go here.  We are looking forward to this year and having a little better record.  We could have some more things to look forward to as far as league standing and so forth.  It still improves each one of our playoff possibilities, so there is still a lot on the line.  Being a rivalry game anything can happen.  We are looking forward to it," he said.

          As it stands now both teams would make the playoffs, but a Monroeville (6-3,4-2) loss and they are on shaky ground.

          The thing about St. Paul, according to Stacher, is they play hard and they don't make mistakes.  "The best thing about St. Paul is they get after it and they get off the ball quickly.  Their linebackers and their defense comes downhill at you.  Being a coach at Genoa for a few years they get after it, they play angry.  They are fundamentally sound.  They just don't make mistakes.  It is going to take a Herculean effort to beat them this week for sure," he said.

          This season, St. Paul (8-1,6-0), #2 in the Swankonsports.com football coaches poll in the small school division, has relied a lot on the run.  Stacher says they have to make them drive the ball against them and not give up big plays.  "If we can get a couple of three and outs and make them punt a little bit.  Maybe we can bend a little bit, but there are not many teams over the last several years that have broken them.  Maybe if we keep bending, bending, bending, something might happen and you never know.  They are that good and I respect coach Livengood and their program a lot.  That's what makes a fun rivalry when you play quality football like that," said Stacher.

 

Published 10/28/15

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Monroeville has to Refocus

 

          To have any chance to share the Firelands Conference football title this year Monroeville is probably going to have to win this week and they know that.

          The Eagles (6-2,4-1) lost for the first time in conference play last week when Crestview beat them down in Richland County (21-12) in a conference game.

          Coach Scott Stacher says there were just too many self inflicted wounds for the Eagles.  "We are disappointed, but we have to move on to Western.  It is hard to win a game when you have four fumbles and some uncharacteristic mistakes,  we had a touchdown called back.  Those things hurt when you only lose by a score.  Credit to Crestview and coach Majer they are getting better every week," he said.

          Monroeville plays arch rival and conference leader Norwalk St. Paul next week and for that to mean anything in terms of the conference they must win this week at Western Reserve (3-5,3-3), who is coming off a (34-21) win over South Central.

          Stacher says its a brand new world for many of his players and they have had a good approach this week in practice.  "We have had a really good week of practice this week.  It is time to refocus on Western.  These kids have never been in this position before.  They have a winning record and in the prior years I think they won six games combined in all of their other years of their high school career," he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, "It is another step for them in the evolution of getting mentally tough and maintaining what you have and not listening to the outside distractions.  It has been a better week of practice."

          Western has started to play better and have been featuring a lot of the wildcat offense with a huge offensive line.  Stacher knows they are going to have to defend the run.  "I'll tell you what coach Stull hasn't won 100 games for nothing.  They are a ground and pound team and they are a physical team that runs the ball a lot.  I think we are going to see a lot of that.  It should be a very interesting game," he said.

 

Published 10/23/15

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Monroeville Wary of Crestview

 

          Monroeville shares first place with Norwalk St. Paul in the Firelands Conference and they play the Flyers in two weeks in a possible showdown, however, they are not about to get ahead of themselves.

          With some strong defense they beat New London (21-12) last week in a conference game and second year coach Scott Stacher says they are going to need the same kind of effort this week.  "Our defense did a good job containing them.  It is much the same this week because Crestview has an explosive offense.  They have a great quarterback in number 15, a super good option quarterback and they do a lot of things well.  They are definitely not a 1-6 team," he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, "They are really good and I know they have lost a couple in overtime and lost a couple of close games.  I am telling you they are they are a team getting better.  Complements to them because they are doing well."

          Crestview (1-6,0-4) lost to Norwalk St. Paul (48-7) last week, but on most occasions have been able to score the ball, including overtime losses to South Central (31-30) and Mapleton (34-27) in conference play.  Running the triple option offense Stacher calls the Cougars dangerous.  "It is a super big play offense.  They have a lot players, I think they have 60 some kids.  They are a little bigger school, so they have a lot to draw from and they have been good in the past.  The players and the talent they have they have just had some tough breaks.  It's a good offense and fits them and they are getting better at it," he said.

          Not only are the Eagles (6-1,4-0) tied for the conference lead they also set third in their computer region and have a lot to play for on Friday night.  However, Stachter does not believe Crestview will show up with an empty tank.  "I think it is meaningful for both teams.  I don't think they are going to take this one lightly what so ever and we aren't either.  It is going to be a tough game.  It is always tough to play Crestview.  We are looking forward to it and hopefully the kids are up to the challenge, " he said.

 

Published 10/15/15

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Monroeville is Back

 

          Monroeville was once one the most consistent small school powers in football and after some lean years they are back in the thick of the Firelands Conference race.

          Right now, they share first place in the conference with defending champion Norwalk St. Paul, their traditional rival, and South Central, who they play this week in Greenwich.

          The Eagles (4-1,2-0) have conference wins over Plymouth (28-20) and last week they beat (40-14) the Mapleton Mounties.

          Coach Scott Stacher, in his second season as Monroeville's head coach, says his players believe in the system they have set up and have been good at executing it.  "I believe that this year the kids have bought into the program.  The is the second year that we have been together.  They lifting each other up and playing as a team.  We work really hard, so I believe the hard work is paying off," he said.

          Stacher told Swankonsports.com on Thursday that they are a team that doesn't believe in fancy stuff.  He says they are going to come right at you and run the football.  "That is my M.O. previously coaching at Genoa and some other places.  I am a believer that he have got to run the ball and I am not a spread guy, a five wide guy, throw the ball all over video game type guy.  I would rather just pound it and we definitely like to do that," he said.

          South Central (2-3,2-0) has produced two dramatic league wins over the last two weeks, beating Crestview (31-30) in double overtime and coming from 11 points down with three minutes to play to down Plymouth (27-23) last week. 

          Stacher says the Trojans play very hard and are gaining confidence.  "I'll tell you what I think coach Hinkle has them playing very well.  Sometimes when you don't have many numbers you bond stronger together and even play harder for each other.  They don't quit.  The keep coming at you.  They are very physical and they are a very sound football team and a very tough opponent.  I have all of the respect for South Central.  They are going a great job over there," said Stacher.

 

Published 10/02/15

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Monroeville Goes Week by Week

 

          Monroeville is normally one of the very best small school football teams in North Central Ohio and the Eagles have already shown they have that potential this year as well.

          The hammered LaGrange Keystone (35-8) in their first game and a late comeback fell just short against the Edison Chargers (34-28) last week.  Coach Dan Periot feels they have done some good things so far, but they have a lot more to do if they are going to be a good football team.  “In week one, we had good run defense and good run offense and an effective passing game,” he told Swankonsports.com, “Last week, from the middle of third quarter on we played quick and we played physical, we just didn’t do that from the start of the game.”

          Periot thinks this a Monroeville team that is best at running the football right now, but they want to be more balanced when they have the ball.  “I think part of coaching is finding your team’s identity.  I think right now we are running the football on offense pretty good, but there is still room for improvement.  With a lot of new faces I think we are still looking for that identity.  We are not giving up on our passing game.  We think we have some good receivers.  On defense we are still finding some answers on personnel,” he said.

          Monroeville plays at Seneca East on Friday night.  The Tigers have already beaten two Firelands Conference teams rather handily in South Central (45-13) and Plymouth (34-7) over the first two weeks.  Seneca East runs out of the spread formation and Periot says they do a lot of different things.  “They do go under center a little bit, but they are balanced on their run and pass tendencies.  Their quarterback is probably their number one threat running the ball.  They have one of the best receivers in the whole area in the Schaffer kid.  He’s a real fast kid and a real tall kid.  We have to know where he is,” said Periot.

          The winner of the Monroeville-Seneca East game puts itself in position for the playoffs, but Periot doesn’t even want to think about that at this point.  “The postseason, wow, that’s so far away right now.  We are focusing on today and practice and getting ready for Seneca East,” he said. 

 

 
   

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