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WBL Football Preview Capsules

September 6, 2012

See the FanFare high school football preview inserted in Thursday's Evening Leader.

The Western Buckeye League features key match-ups when Ottawa-Glandorf travels to Shawnee, Wapakoneta hosts Bath and Celina goes to Defiance.

St. Marys (0-2, 0-1 WBL) at Elida (2-0, 1-0 WBL)

Elida is looking to go to 3-0 for the first time under head coach Jason Carpenter.

Carpenter went back two seasons ago to the last time the Bulldogs were playing for a 3-0 start to find some motivation for his team this week in its game against St. Marys. Two years ago the Bulldogs began the season 2-0, only to lose to a Van Wert team that ended up going 5-5.

"We were looking at the film two years ago and thought we had a really good shot at beating Van Wert and starting 3-0," Carpenter said. "Our kids got big heads and we learned a lesson because Van Wert came out in the second half and whooped our butts. I think our guys know that this is one of those trap games where if we don't come out guns blazing and give St. Marys hope, then we're in for a long game. Hopefully we can jump out early."

St. Marys is looking to jumpstart an offense that has scored just seven points in each of the first two games and a defense that gave up seven passing touchdowns in the first half last week against Kenton.

“I want to see them fight,” St. Marys head coach Greg Phillips said. “When you come off a really, really tough loss like we had last week and even the week before, you want to see them regroup, play together and fight."
 

Bath (1-1, 0-1 WBL) at Wapakoneta (1-1, 0-1 WBL)

Wapakoneta lost 21-14 to Elida last Friday night, a startling loss for a Redskin team considered to be one of the favorites to win the WBL title in 2012. Elida kept the Redskins from scoring four times in the red zone. Bath has averaged 47.5 points per game in the first two games this season. Last year's game was a classic, with Bath coming up short by one point of upending the Redskins in Wapak's 14-13 win.

Ottawa-Glandorf (2-0, 1-0 WBL) at Shawnee (1-1, 1-0 WBL)

O-G survived a late scare against Celina to hold on for a 28-26 win. Now the Titans will face another upstart team that looks to be much better than they were a season ago. Shawnee lost in Week 1 to defending state champion Marion Local and then blasted Van Wert 41-6 last week. Kenton has won 10 straight games on the road in non-neutral site games dating back to 2010.

Celina (1-1, 0-1 WBL) at Defiance (1-1, 0-1 WBL)

Celina lost for the first time last week, 28-26, to league favorite Ottawa-Glandorf, but the Bulldogs proved they’ll be a tough out this season after a dominating win over Versailles and a torrid fourth quarter comeback against the Titans. Braden Billger went 15 for 21 for 196 yards through the air for Celina last Friday against the Titans. Zach Hembree rushed for 96 yards. Defiance picked up a WBL opening win over Bath 42-32 last week. Jerry Buti’s defense has struggled so far, however. The Bulldogs are giving up 44.5 points per game through two weeks.

Van Wert (0-2, 0-1 WBL) at Kenton (1-1, 1-0 WBL)

Kenton put up 56 points against St. Marys’ defense in one half. Who knows how many the Wildcats could put up against a Van Wert defense that allowed 56 points to Bryan in Week 1 and 41 points to Shawnee last Friday night.

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