Swank on Sports




Northmor Golden Knights High School Athletics



Northmor Still Striving to Get Better

Click here to listen to an interview with coach Zach Ruth

Northmor has won all four of its games so far this year, but they are not standing still.

They play at Cardington in a Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference game on Friday night.

After a win in the conference last week, (81-51) over Fredericktown, the Golden Knights improved to (4-0,1-0), #2 in the Swankonsports.com boys’ basketball coaches poll in the small school division.

After playing four games in eight days, the Golden Knights will have a week off. Coach Zach Ruth says it has allowed them to get in some practice time. “I think any coach when you have a bunch of games like that and you are winning you just want to keep going. We were actually scheduled to play Danville (Tuesday) night an that would have been our fifth game, but with their football success they moved that game to the 23 of this month. It was like since the games started here we have finally been able to get back and do some break down drills this week. Kind of get back more into a routine other than just preparing for the next game,” he said.

Ruth says they have worked hard in practice this week to challenge the kids and keep them sharp. “Us as coaches have to think outside of the box and try and think of some things to challenge them. For example, (Wednesday) night in practice we were doing break down stuff with the JV’s. If the JV’s got an offensive rebound we had to do 10 push ups. If they got an uncontested shot we had to do 10 pushups. You have to really challenge them,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “I have never been a fan of letting kids think they have arrived because I think that is a disaster waiting to happen. We like to really challenge them on that. Another thing we have done is we have done a lot of drills where we have to get so many reps in in a certain amount of time. Just trying to keep them ready and hungry.”

Northmor is at Cardington (1-3,0-2) on Friday night. The two schools shared the title in the old blue division of the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference last year. The Pirates lost to East Knox (51-49) on Tuesday night.

Ruth says Cardington is very young this year. “Cardington is really young. I have the upmost respect for coach (Rod) Brown. We were high school friends. He graduated from Cardington when I graduated from Northmor. We help each other. Of course, we shared the league title last year. This year he is in rebuild mode running a couple of freshmen. He probably has the youngest team around. They pose a threat. They have the Garrett Wagner boy, which will contend for player of the year in our league. He is a pretty good one. We can’t leave him. We just have to play our game one quarter at a time, one game at a time. We have to be prepared to see some junk defenses and some zones, so we have been working on that as well,” said Ruth.

Published 12/14/17

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Northmor Rallies Past Colonel Crawford

Demetrious “Meechie” Johnson’s two free throws :04 seconds left in overtime sealed Northmor’s (66-63) win over Colonel Crawford in an exciting non-conference boys’ basketball game at Northmor on Wednesday night.

Colonel Crawford held the lead for most of the night. The high watermark was a 13 point lead (41-28) with 1:51 to go in their quarter after a basket by Jordan Fenner, but the Golden Knights would outscore Crawford (26-13) over the final 10 minutes to tie the game at 54 after four quarters.

“We didn’t give up at all. The kids were laughing at me because in a time out I told them you guys look scared and I can’t help you because I have never been scared in my life. I said that is the mentality we have to play with here. We preform when our backs are against the wall. I mean Pleasant had the perfect storm to beat us Friday. I thought Crawford had the perfect storm to beat us (Wednesday) night,’ he told Swankonsports.com after the game, “The Kegleys are out of the game with foul trouble, the bench steps up. I can’t say enough. I personally thought that you can’t press Colonel Crawford and we went to the press and we turned them over. We got right back in the game. The complete tide of the game changed. It was a fun game, gosh.”

Brody Martin’s three at the third quarter horn gave the Eagles (1-1) a (46-38) advantage with eight minutes to play, but Northmor went ahead for the first time since the 4:35 mark of the first quarter on Johnson’s steal at midcourt and layup with 2:15 to play in the game giving the Golden Knights a (52-51) lead.

Colonel Crawford coach Davis Sheldon says they just gave it away too much. “The bottom line is you can’t turn the ball over and we had a lot of turnovers when they made their run. That can’t happen. We didn’t take care of the basketball and turnovers hurt us during the run. I was very proud of our effort. Our game plan defensively was good. “Meehie” is a heck of an athlete, we all know that, but turnovers is what did us in. It was not the end of the game, it was turnovers. When I look at the second half and you have 13 turnovers. Those are guys that don’t normally turn it over. That is what cost us,” said Sheldon.

It looked like the fat lady was heading to the mic with :12 seconds to play in overtime as Northmor held a five point lead (63-58,) but Cameron McCready hit a 35 footer to cut the lead by to two (63-61) with six seconds left. Northmor made three of four free throws in the final five seconds to put it away. “You have to take care of the ball, rebound, and hit foul shots. I’ll tell you what Cameron McCreary is one of the best around and I think I have one of the best around. He made it interesting last year up at their place. He kept banking in threes to keep them in it. That one he hit there towards the end was probably 30, 35 feet. He won’t go away. I label that as maybe a district championship like game. That is the type of atmosphere, the type of team, that is the kind of team we will see. At the end of the night we gain a lot of confidence and I think we gave Colonel Crawford some things to work on, they will make adjustments, it will make the better too,” said Ruth.

With Tyler Kegley, Kyle Kegley and Black Miller all over 6’5”, the Golden Knights held the size advantage, but Sheldon says it wasn’t those guys that killed them on the glass. “They had 14 offensive rebounds and that is a lot. A lot of them were Meechie. He just goes in and throws something up and then just jumps over you. There is a reason he has won the state long jump how many times. We had trouble keeping him off the glass. It wasn’t the Kegleys, it was Meechie and Plecther that willed themselves. But, we can’t turn the ball over that much like we did in the second half. That was the frustrating part. Our offense was really good, but when you turn it over you don’t get shots up. You can’t score. You can’t do what you need to do. That is where we struggled a little bit,” said Sheldon.

Pletcher had 21 and Johnson 19 for the Golden Knights. McCreary had 20 and Harley Shaum 14 for the Eagles.

Northmor has designs on a Knox Morrow Athletic Conference title and a long division three tournament run. Ruth says a game like Wednesday night is going to help them get better. “These are fun. I can not phantom what is would be like to be one of our players. We talked the other day that some kids play a whole high school career and never get to this juncture of a game or atmosphere and my kids are living it about every time we step on the floor. I can’t stress enough it is great to be a Northmor Golden Knight right now,” he said.

Published 12/07/17

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Northmor Excited by the Challenge

Northmor is in a position they have rarely been in until the last two years they are now the hunters not the game.

They host Colonel Crawford in a battle of basketball titans on Wednesday night. They begin play in the new Know Morrow Athletic Conference on Friday night against Fredericktown.

After beating Marion Pleasant in their first game last Friday (38-37) with a free throw at the end, they dominated Bucyrus (72-33) last Saturday.

Coach Zach Ruth says they got into more of a grove against Bucyrus. “We were wound tighter than a fiddle on Friday night and hopefully we got that out of the way and went up to Bucyrus on Saturday night and we settled in. Friday was a big mental challenge for us, but I think that is going to go a long way with us,” he said.

However, Ruth believes the experience against Pleasant will help them a lot too because they had to get a stop and a rebound to get in position to win the game. “I have always judge all sports when the other team has to spend so much time preparing and trying different things that they are not comfortable with that is a sign that you have a good squad. Pleasant was trying some things that I never saw Pleasant do before. Bucyrus has a new coach up there and he is feeling things out. Some of these marque matchups teams are really putting a lot of emphasis. I can’t wait to see what kind of wrinkle coach (David) Sheldon is going to throw at us (Wednesday) night. We are prepared for things and I have my kids trained. These little things, these little mind games, I love because it is going to make us better,” said Ruth.

Colonel Crawford (1-0) is at Northmor on Wednesday night. The Eagles beat Mansfield Christian (63-47) in their opener. Ruth says it should be a great battle. “(Wednesday) night’s game, I mean there are some good players in the area at all of the schools, but (Wednesday) night’s game features to of the better point guards in the area in all divisions. Then you are going to have two big post guys inside going at it. It is going to be a good one,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “I anticipate it coming down to crunch time. The gym is going to be sold out. It is going to be like a conference title or district title atmosphere. I am just so happy for the kids to be part of that in the third game of the season on a Wednesday night.”

Ruth adds the game against Fredericktown is just as important because it is a league game. He says teams in the new league are going to be ready to play them. “My kids hear me say that’s why you play the game. I hate arrogantcy, but we are confident that when healthy we should be the front runner in the new “KMAC” league, but with that we are going to get everybody’s best shot. Even the team’s that aren’t supposed to do very good, we are going to get their best shot. If they can hang with Northmor or knock Northmor off some schools may label that as a success. We have just got to be prepared because people are going to try and bring it every night to get us and what a great place to be in,” said Ruth.

Published 12/06/17

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Northmor Chomping at the Bit

Northmor is coming off the best basketball season in school history and they are ready to better that this season.

They open by hosting Marion Pleasant on Friday night and then head to Bucyrus on Saturday night, both are non-conference games.

Coach Zach Ruth says the players are really kicking at the barn stall to get going on what they believe is going to be an outstanding season. “We are ready to go. We have kind of been ready to go we are just tying to keep them challenged and try and keep them hungry. Some coaches I know, and I have been on that end of it, you wish you kind of had a couple more weeks. I think we could have started last week, so, yeah, we are ready to go,” he said.

Ruth adds these Golden Knights are not just great players, but great kids, and they have spent the preseason kind of filling in the cracks if you will. “I am blessed with the group of kids I have. Not only are they phenomenal on the basketball court, but they are just as good outside the court and in the classroom. It makes it really easy. It really makes my job easy,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “We have kind of really focused on the little things this year. You know, last year it was the big things. We had never been in contention for a league title and we got that out of the way. Now. We are really working on the little things.”

For many years the two schools were part of the old small school division of the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference. Pleasant remains in the “MOAC,” but Northmor is now in the new Knox Morrow Athletic Conference.

Ruth has respect for what Pleasant does as a total sports program and knows the Spartans are going to be tough and physical on Friday night. “Pleasant is a school district that I am hoping that we can be with the success we have had. Pleasant when they take the field or court or whatever sport they are expected to win. This the first game they have played without the Craycraft boys and a lot of people are concerned with them, but at Pleasant it is next man up, the next guy in line and they go. They are going to get up and defend. It is going to be a tough one. We got them at their place last year and I know they are going to try and spoil our opening night,” said Ruth.

Published 11/29/17

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Northmor Ready to Get Going

Northmor had a tremendous basketball season last year and the Golden Knights show the potential to be even better this winter.

Coach Zach Ruth says they have shown good things and right now he is trying to keep them from going stale before they open the season next week against Marion Pleasant. “We come in with an experienced group of seven seniors, two of them have never missed a varsity quarter. Brock Fletcher is a three year varsity starter. It is to the point now we are ready to go and it just trying to keep them challenged over break and next to week to get them ready for opening week and the game next Friday with Pleasant,” he told Swankonsports.com before practice on Wednesday morning, “I have been pleasantly happy with the scrimmages. We have scrimmaged some big schools. We have a big one Friday morning up at Norwalk with Anthony Wayne and Edison. That will be a really good test of where we are at.”

With their height and athleticism the Golden Knights are going to see a lot of different defensive combinations and Ruth says they have to be ready for those. “In the scrimmages we have been playing with some of the bigs at point guard and moving some of the guards into the post, interchanging, keeping them challenged for some things that could present themselves throughout the season. Will are going to see a lot of zone, we are probably going to see a lot of specialty defenses. We had a scrimmage last Friday and a team zoned us all five quarters. It was good for us because we are going to see a lot of it. That is what this early season stuff is for to get us ready for the season and a big run,” said Ruth.

Northmor qualified for the football playoffs for the first time ever this fall and Ruth says they are carrying a lot of momentum into the basketball season. He says it is good to be a Golden Knight. “We had a phenomenal last year with the school’s first ever league title, followed by the best summer we have ever had, followed the best football season the school has ever had. The community is ready to go, the kids are ready to go. It is a blessing to be part of Northmor right now,” he said.

Published 11/23/17

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Northmor Feeling Good and Confident

Northmor is playing on week 11 of the high school football season for the first time ever.

They are certainly the feel good story of the fall of 2017. The girls’ volleyball team at Northmor made the district final too.

The football team plays at Beverly Fort Frey (9-1) on Friday night in a first round game in division six.

They say there is nothing in a school’s history like their first district title in basketball or their first playoff appearance in the football. Coach Scott Armrose says this is a special time at Northmor. “It feels great, it really does. I am just happy to be a part of it. It’s exciting for our community. It’s exciting for our coaching staff. It’s exciting for our players. It’s an exciting time to be involved in Northmor football,” he said.

The goal of the football program is to be excited, but stay focused. Armrose says they won’t be easy. “That is the challenge. There is so much excitement in our school right now. We told the boys this is a regular week of practice. We are going to stay focused. We are going to approach it like a regular week. We will keep our schedule the same. Everything is exactly the same. It is just a week, it is an extension of the season. We are going to try and be consistent with what we have done all year,” said Armrose.

Fort Frye has lost only once this year, that coming in week two (6-0) to Johnstown Northridge. The Cadets have allowed only 81 points all season, that’s just over a touchdown a game. In mid-season they produced three shutouts in four games. Over the last seven games they have scored at least 30 points in six of them, all wins.

Armrose says the Cadets are a very physical team, much like the team they played last week in Highland. “Fort Frye really reminds us a lot of Highland. They are a big, physical team. Their colors are similar to Highland. They run a similar offense to Highland. They like to run the ball and work the clock. They are physical on defense. They aren’t real big up front defensively, but they’ve got really good team speed. They are a tough football team,” he told Swankonsports.com on Sunday evening, “They are 9-1 on their season. They have a lot of big wins. They lost early in the year and they have kind of gotten on a roll. This will be their third straight year in the playoffs. They lost last year in the regional championship game.”

Northmor (8-2) beat Highland (34-12) last Friday, stopping Highland from winning an outright title in the Knox Morrow Athletic Conference. Armrose says that was their best win their best win this year. He liked their approach to the game. “We are a confident football team right now, we really are. That is what we told our boys going into last week with Highland. Highland was we felt the best team we had played all season. We said if we play our best football and go into the game relaxed and confident. Our boys are certainly always relaxed and they play confident all night long and I think we will continue to do that. We play our best football when we are relaxed and we are out there having fun we play with confidence and that is what these boys do,” said Armrose.

Northmor has one the biggest playmakers in this part of the state in quarterback Demetrious Johnson. Armrose says he thinks the Fort Frye coaching staff has reviewed their film more than once. “We can’t be a match-up that anybody looks forward to. When you get a glance at Demetrious Johnson on film you don’t say, oh good, we play these guys. I know we are a nightmare as far as match ups go, we really are. Then as they start to watch Demetrious they see the other weapons that we have. We are a tough match up without a doubt just from the standpoint of watching “Meechie” offensively,” he said.

Published 10/30/17

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A Win Puts Northmor in Playoffs

2017 could be a watermark season for the Northmor Golden Knights.

A win on Friday night over one loss Highland will put them in the postseason playoffs for the first time ever. If they lose it will be up the mathematicians. Right now, Northmor is fifth in their division six region. They need to finish in the top eight.

Last week, they hammered Centerburg (49-0) in play in the Knox Morrow Athletic Conference.

Coach Scott Armrose says played four solid quarters on both sides if the ball. “It was a really good effort on both sides of the football. We did exactly what we wanted to do. We wanted to get a fast start and we didn’t want to let up. We thought against Mt. Gilead the week before we kind of let up in the second half and we didn’t want to do that last week. We wanted to take care of business from beginning to end and we did a good job of that,” said Armrose.

There are a lot of teams just kind of playing out the season, but not the Golden Knights. Armrose, in his first year as head coach, says that is kind of cool. “That is what it is all about to make these games last in the season meaningful and that means you much have had a pretty good season to this point. To be part of Northmor football and to play meaningful games in October it is pretty darn exciting,” he said.

Northmor (7-2,4-2) hosts Highland (8-1,6-0,) who has secured no less than a share of the conference title. They lead Danville by a game.

Armrose says Scots are a physical team and that is what makes them good. “Their physical style of play, without a doubt, on both sides of the ball. Offensively, they have a big strong offensive line. They don’t do anything fancy they run right at you. Defensively, they just play a physical defense with in your face man coverage and they beat you up all over the place. What makes Highland so good is how physical they are,” said Armrose.

He says all football teams are physical, but they have to make sure they are at Highland’s level on Friday night. “When you say that football is a physical game and to say that somebody is more physical than other teams you kind of laugh. With the way that the game has turned to the spread offense there aren’t a lot of teams that play a physical offense like Highland does anymore. We want to match their physicality,” he said.

Demetrious Johnson is electric as the Northmor quarterback and Armrose says they need to feed him the ball a lot. “When you talk about how physical Highland is fortunately we play a pretty physical game too. We also go into every game knowing we are going to have the best athlete on the field and we have all season long,” he told Swankonsports.com on Monday, “We are going to try and take advantage of that without a doubt. We don’t hide the fact that Demetrious is our main weapon. They are going to have to try and stop and contain him. When they do that that opens things up for other people.”

Published 10/24/17

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The Assignment is Clear For Northmor

Northmor has never made the playoffs and they have a really good chance this year, but they have to keep winning if they are going to do it.

Right now, they stand sixth in their division six computer region. The top eight make it.

They outscored Mt. Gilead (54-26) last week and coach Scott Armrose says the nice thing was they were able to spread things around more than they have in some other weeks. “The great thing about our offensive performance Friday night was we completed all kinds of passes and we spread the ball around,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “It wasn’t just “Meechie” carrying us on his back. “Meechie” only had 10 carries, so we did a lot of things well Friday night other than running “Meechie.” We got a lot of other people involved in the offense and it is fun when we do that.”

Armrose they certainly have other players other than quarterback Demetrious Johnson that can do some things and make some big plays. “We have have Conan Becker, who has run the ball really hard all season long and Conan is a very good running back, he has close to 600 yards rushing. He is doing a great job. We have Wyatt Reeder and Coner Becker and Kyle Kegley and Chris Bood, who can all go up and catch the ball. They are good receivers. So, we have other weapons that we can use and given the opportunity we will use them,” said Armrose.

Northmor (6-2,3-2) plays at home Friday night against the Centerburg Trojans (2-6,1-4,) who lost to Danville (41-0) last week “KMAC” game.

Armrose says Centerburg plays pretty good defense. He says he would like to get some scores early. “Centerburg has had very tough defensive shows this year. They have been in a lot of games, late in the game where their defense has kept them in it. They have struggled offensively to keep thing going. We look for a battle Friday night. We look for Centerburg to plat tough defense against us. We need our defense to come up big to limit their points,” said Armrose.

The Northmor coach says a win is a must or next week against won’t mean anything. “We absolutely have to take care of business this Friday night. Centerburg is the only team on our mind right now. We are focused solely on this game and we know it’s a big one and we have to come out and take care of business,” he said.

Published 10/20/17

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Northmor Not Thinking of Playoffs… Yet

Northmor is a school that has never made the high school football playoffs, but they have a chance to do it this year.

They in the number five spot in their division six region after seven weeks of play. They need to finish in the top eight at the end of week 10.

They play at winless Mt. Gilead this week in a Knox Morrow Athletic Conference game.

Last week, they kind of dropped out of contention in the league when they lost (32-28) to unbeaten East Knox. They now trail the Bulldogs and Highland by two games with three to play.

Coach Scott Armrose says the Bulldogs just had one more play than they did last week. He says it was a heck of a game. “East Knox is a good football team and they played one heck of a game. We scored and they scored and we scored and they scored and it was back and forth. They just made one more play than we did,” he said.

When it comes to the postseason, Armrose says they can’t be watching the computer standings, they have to keep their focus on Mt. Gilead. “It has never happened in our school’s history and we know that opportunity is there. We are going to need help and we are going to have to take care of business. What it comes down to this week is beating Mt. Gilead and we know that is what it is all about,” said Armrose.

The Golden Knights (5-2,2-2) are at Mt. Gilead (0-7,0-4) this week. The Indians played really their best game of the season, at least in league play, when they lost at Centerburg (35-24) last week in a league game.

Armrose says injuries have killed Mt. Gilead this year, but when they have all of their players they can do some things. “Mt. Gilead has struggled this season as far as getting wins. They have battled a lot of injuries and their numbers are down just a little bit and the have had a hard time keeping their team on the field,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “When they are healthy and have everybody full force they can be a dangerous football team. They have a good receiver in Mollohan, number 16. He is a big kid and a good looking athlete on both sides of the ball and he is dangerous. Mt. Gilead has a quarterback that can throw well too.”

Published 10/13/17

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Northmor Must have Win

Northmor trails co-leaders Highland and East Knox by a game in the Knox Morrow Athletic Conference and they almost surely need a win when then host the Bulldogs on Friday night.

Falling two games back with three to play would be pretty tough to recover from when it comes to winning the conference title.

Last week, after losing to Danville the week before, the Golden Knights (5-1,2-1) demolished Cardington (32-7) in a league game.

Coach Scott Armrose says they were able to adapt as they game went on. “We got off to a slow start again, but we adjusted well as the game went on and the kids really played hard and we were able to pull away in the second half,” he said.

He added it was good to get the monkey off their backs. “It feels really good to get that awful taste of losing out of your mouth. It sticks around with you for the whole week and it feels go to get that out of your mouth,” he said.

East Knox (6-0,3-0) whipped Centerburg (34-0) in a league test last week. Armrose says this is an outstanding football team they will be facing. “It is a very good football team. You don’t get to be 6-0 unless you are a real good football team. On both sides of the ball offensively and defensively they have done some real good things. They are a very good football team,” said Armrose.

East Knox is a football team that is blessed with a lot of speed. Armrose says they use that well on both sides of the ball with their passing game and their blitz package on defense. “East Knox is a spread, pass football team. They have a quarterback that is as good as we have seen all season. They use the whole field. He has a great arm. He throws it well underneath, he throws it well deep. They have a couple of kids that run the ball really hard. They are not real big up front, but they have really good overall team speed,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “Defensively, they are a 3-3 stack or a 3-5 football team. They blitz an awful lot. We have not seen this much blitzing to this point in the season. It is something we have had to work on this week. It is going to be a battle Friday night.”

Published 10/06/17

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Pass Defense a Key for Northmor

Northmor lost for the first time last week and now they have to find a way to fix some things as they get ready for Cardington in another Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference game.

Danville edged the Golden Knights (41-34) last week.

Coach Scott Armrose says they just go too far behind in the game in the first half. “We just couldn’t overcome the mistakes that we made in the first half. We were down 20 at halftime. We got an early score and then we fell down 20 again and to our boy’s credit they never gave up and they fought the whole game. We were able to make it a football game. We had a chance to score or win it at the end and we just ran out of time,” he said.

Danville knocked down a couple of passes in the end zone.

It was a loss, not a win, for Northmor, but Armrose says he found a lot of positive things about his team in that loss. “We want to forget the week before and improve every week anyway, so win or loss that is the way we approach the next week. It doesn’t matter we are going to learn from the mistakes we made. We are going to learn from the experience,” he told Swankonsports.com on Monday, “We hadn’t trailed in a football game all season and I wasn’t sure how the boys were going to respond. I can count on these boys there is no quit in them and I know that now.”

Northmor (4-1,1-1) plays at Cardington (2-3,1-1) in a conference game on Friday night. The Pirates lost (51-40) to East Knox in a conference game last Friday night.

Armrose says they have a lot of athleticism. “They have a ton of speed on both sides of the football. They are a big play team. The fullback and the quarterback have tremendous speed. It is going to be quite a challenge to say the least,” he said.

Defense has a been a cornerstone for Northmor all year, now Armrose says they must find a way to defend better in the open field. He says playing good defense is the key. “We have done that all year, really we have. With Danville is was the first week with a team that is really going to spread the field and throw the ball over you. We were used to taking on Lucas and Fredericktown and Crestview. Those teams run right at you. It was a learning experience for us. Cardington is going to be just as much a challenge as Danville was as far as running the spread offense,” said Armrose.

Published 9/26/17

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Northmor Continues to Roll

Northmor has been one of the feel good stories of the 2017 football season so far. A program that has had a lot more losing seasons than winning ones over the last 30 years, is unbeaten on the season.

They destroyed Fredericktown (43-8) last Friday on the opening night of play in the new Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference.

First year head coach Scott Armrose says it was an important win for them. “To start conference play in the first year in a new conference we felt like our football team was headed in the right direction and we wanted to make a statement and play a good game to get a good start in league play,” he said.

He adds they have scored some points, but they have been very good on defense too. “The last two weeks we have given up touchdowns late against some of our backups. We are playing very, very good defense right now,” he said.

Armrose knows who to credit when it comes to the defense that the Golden Knights have been playing this year. “Coach Morgan is our defensive coordinator. I talked to coach Morgan here in the early spring and my sales pitch was, hey, this is your defense, you call the shots, you make the plans and I going to give you the freedom to do what you want. He has done that and it is probably the best decision I think I have ever made,” he told Swankonsports.com on Tuesday, “He is insane when it comes to breaking down film. He puts in the hours and when I say hours I am not speaking figuratively, I mean he puts in the hours. He puts together a good plan, but it is not a crazy plan, it’s plan our kids can execute, and a plan our kids buy into. That is why we have been so successful defensively.”

Northmor (4-0,1-0) travels to Danville (3-1,0-1) to take on a traditional power in the Blue Devils. Danville lost their first game as part of the new league (26-0) at Highland last week in their first loss of the year.

Armrose says the Blue Devils are going to be a much different challenge for them than they have been seeing this season. “Danville is a different kind of challenge. The last few weeks we have played Lucas and Crestview and Fredericktown, teams that want to pound the ball. Danville is going to spread the field and throw the ball around. So, it is definitely a different challenge. They have five receivers and then two tight ends and three receivers. They use every bit of the field and do it very well. They have a really good quarterback in Skyler Durbin that can really throw the ball around. Then they can spread you out and he can run the ball. So, it is quite a challenge for us this week ,” said Armrose.

Published 9/20/17

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Northmor Wants to Control Point of Attack

Northmor has been fantastic over the first three weeks of the season and opens play in the new Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference by hosting the Fredericktown Freddies on Friday night.

They beat the Lucas Cubs and their football in a phone booth approach last week (26-8) in non-conference play.

Coach Scott Armrose says they were able to contain the run happy Cubs. “We were very pleased with the results and with how hard our boys played. They continue to play with a tremendous amount of heart and enthusiasm. We played very well in the third quarter and at the end of the game. That is when our boys really seem to strive and take control,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “It really has a lot to do with our defensive coordinator Dave Morgan. Three weeks in a row he has just come up with fantastic plans. They are not these crazy plans they are just plans that are boys buy into that we can learn in a week and they can execute. So, I’m very pleased with the result.”

Defensively, Armrose says they are going to be pretty consistent in their approach and just try and tweak things in little bit depending on who they are playing. “We have a system that we believe in. We run a 4-3 defense and we adjust that system slightly each week, but what the boys do each week is what they do. We believe in our system. We know it works. We can stop any offense with that system. We just have make sure we can adjust our base defense to their offense, so our boys can do the things that they can do,” he said.

Fredericktown (1-2) won its first game of the season last week in beating Utica (34-21) in non-conference play.

Armrose says the Freddies are going to try and make it hard to run the football, which is what they want to do. “They try and do some things that really make you work. The pack the box full of people. They play eight in the box and sometimes more. We are not hiding the fact that we like to run the football and that is what we are going to try and do, so that will be quite a challenge. They are big and physical up front on both sides of the ball. Offensively and defensively their lines are very good and they are going to make us work no doubt about it,” said Armrose.

In a game like this, Armrose says they know the point of attack is going to be key. “We are going to have to control the line of scrimmage. We are going to have to do the same things we have done the first three weeks. It all comes down to controlling the line of scrimmage and the Freddies aren’t going to make that easy. They have got a lot of upperclassmen playing, big kids that are strong and physical. We need to control the line of scrimmage on the defensive side of the ball. Our defense has to play with what we like to call controlled rage, like they did last week,” said Armrose.

Published 9/14/17

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Northmor Getting Ready For Lucas

Two teams off to a good start this season meet on Friday night in non-conference play as Northmor is at Lucas.

The Golden Knights (2-0) beat Worthington Christian (40-14) last week.

Coach Scott Armrose says they got off to a slow start, but he says they found some things in the second half. “We got off to a slow start. We were having trouble moving them up front. We knew they were big and it was going to be a challenge, but we also felt like if we played a physical football game eventually we would be able to overpower them. It was 14-7 at halftime and we got the ball to start the second half. We talked about getting a fast start and getting going and we ended up scoring four touchdowns in the third quarter. So, we were very pleased with that. We just need to become more consistent overall, especially up front with our young offensive line,” said Armrose.

Armrose says at halftime they just talked about things and different ways to go about it. “We reaffirmed the things we talked about before the game and the things we needed take care of getting on these guys and playing physical football. We made a few adjustments. The adjustments we make we are not drawing up new plays,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday, “We are saying their defensive end is not where we said he would be that’s okay here is how we are going to block him now. With a young offensive line we find ourselves doing a lot of those things right now, but we are learning and getting better every week.”

Lucas (2-0) is coming off a (37-7) belting of Centerburg last week.

They, of course, run the rugby style double tight, double wing offense, and Armrose says that offense is hard to get ready for. “We had an interesting practice (Wednesday) night. It was our first day of school here at Northmor. The first day of school is always a challenge. It was raining as we started our defensive practice and then we had our scout team trying to simulate the Lucas offense. To be friendly it was just a mess. It is very difficult to do,” he said.

Plymouth has adopted the same style and Lucas has seen that in a scrimmage and Armrose thinks that is a plus. “We know exactly what we need to do to slow the Lucas offense down, but knowing it and explaining to the kids that do it are two different things. We have worked hard on it this week. Fortunately we did scrimmage Plymouth early in the season, which gave us some experience and that is going to help us tremendously as well,” he said.

Published 9/07/17

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Northmor Gets Big Win; Readies for Week Two

Last week, the Northmor Golden Knights produced one of their biggest wins in at least their recent football history when then they knocked off highly regarded Crestview.

Demetrious Johnson scored three touchdowns, two on long runs, and one on a pick six to seal the win, and the Golden Knights beat Crestview (21-14) at their place last week.

They play at Worthington Christian in another non-conference game on Friday night.

Scott Armrose, in his first year as head coach, had a smile on his face all weekend and was very excited for his players, especially the seniors. “(Crestview is) a darn good football team. We wanted to make it a close game. We wanted to control the clock a little bit and be in it at the end and we might have a chance,” he told Swankonsports.com on Thursday, “We played with a tremendous amount of heart and our defensive coordinator Dave Morgan put together a pretty darn good plan to stopping a really good offense, so I was very pleased for our boys and I was proud of our seniors who worked really hard and had taken a beating the last three years and won a really big game right there.”

Northmor had won just three games over the last two years and nine over the last three.

Johnson is a former state champion in the long jump and a pretty good basketball player too. Armrose says he is a threat anytime he gets the ball in his hands. “Without a doubt, he is a playmaker. He is usually the best athlete on the field. If we can block a couple of people for him he can make plays. The ball just seems to come to him on defense too. He is dangerous on both sides of the ball,” he said.

Worthington Christian lost to Cardington, also of the new Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference, (53-14) last week.

Armrose says the Warriors are going to try and run the football and they are coached by a guy that you might have head of. “Worthington Christian is coached by an All-Pro and a Super Bowl champ in Jeff Hartings, who played for the Steelers. He has some boys of his own that play on the team and they have a lot of really good athletes. They are big up front and the Hartings kid that plays running back is big and fast and hard to stop. They didn’t have a whole lot of success running the ball consistently against Cardington, but we think they will come back and be better this week,” he said.

Published 9/01/17

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Northmor Explodes in Seventh to Beat Mt. Gilead


          Northmor scored 13 runs in the seventh inning and they rallied to beat Mt. Gilead (18-8) in a blue division game in the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference on Wednesday.

          Trailing by three (8-5) entering the top of the seventh inning the Golden Knights were able to get on a roll.

          Coach Buck Workman says his kids never give up until the final pitch and that was evident on Wednesday.  “That is the thing about our kids I don’t think we have ever given up.  We fight to the last out and (Wednesday) was no different.  We were down 8-5 and we led on the seventh with a walk and a home run and we were back within one.  You could just seem them gain and confidence and we just kept going and we put up 13,” he said.

          Northmor (8-10,4-8) has won its last three games and Workman says his kids are getting into the grove a little better at the plate.  He says the blue division has some pretty good arms.  “The thing is our league is pretty impressive.  Top to bottom every night is a battle.  You are going to struggle to get hits on some nights when you face Mack Aglin (Highland) Monday and the kid is going to Clemson.  He held us to five hits and struck out 10.  It is just not easy,” he told Swankonsports.com on Wednesday night, “Then you have to adjust to some different pitching (Wednesday) night.  The kid we saw we saw earlier in the season too and he is pretty decent.  You have to make adjustments and it took us a little while to do so.”

          You are not going to score 13 runs in an inning very often.  Workman says they have to better at doing the little things that will end up in them scoring runs.  “I think our kids are hitting the ball pretty decent right now.  What I want to see is better execution on bunts and moving runners and doing the little things like we need to do to be successful.  We have a good enough hitting lineup when they are on.  We just need to do those little things better,” he said.


Published 4/27/17

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