Morenci football season to open 08.25.2010

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

The Jonesville football roster lists only 20 players for 2010, but even that looks like a luxury to Morenci coach Tom Saylor.

The Bulldogs had only 14 players when they faced three teams in scrimmage action last week, and that included a couple boys who will be ineligible for the season opener this week.

“If everybody comes back who should, I would have 16 players Friday,” Saylor said.

That includes two sophomores moved up from the junior varsity.

Saylor said a squad this small is something he’s never experienced in his long coaching career, but he’ll take what he’s got and get ready for a visit from the Comets Friday night.

The 7 p.m. game might be the first time the two teams have ever met—at least in 60 years. Records going back to 1950 show no match-ups between the two schools.

“Jonesville looks pretty good,” Saylor said, noting a very highly regarded senior tackle (6-4, 300 pounds). “They’re disciplined and they get off the ball well.”

Saylor figures into an ironic twist to the contest. The Jonesville coach, Josh Lindeman, was coached by the Luma brothers at Hudson who were in turn coached by Saylor.

Morenci has two starters out with injuries and two others sitting out from academic problems last spring. Mitch Schmucker, a would-be two-way starter, is out for the season from an automobile injury suffered several weeks ago.

Still, Saylor says he had a solid core of talented players along with some inexperienced ones that he’ll have to work into the lineup.

Quarterback Brett Bovee is back to call signals and sophomore Hayze Wolf will serve as a backup.

Senior lineman Nick Wilson will be moved to a tight end position, but there will still be plenty of size in the interior of the line. In fact, three players alone tally about 1,100 pounds, with Peter Bach in the middle.

With so many key players missing from the Bulldog lineup, Jonesville could be hard to beat, Coach Saylor, but it’s not an impossible task.

• Morenci’s junior varsity team kicks off the football season at 6:30 p.m. Thursday with a trip to Jonesville.

  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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