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MAC power stands in way of state final berth for Columbus Grove

A MAC power stands in the way of Columbus Grove’s shot at a state championship on Saturday night at Sidney High School.
The Bulldogs will face state championship favorite Coldwater in the state semifinal with the winner advancing to next Sunday’s state title game against the winner of Fort Frye and New Middletown Springfield.
“They’re the best-coached team I’ve seen,” lauded Grove leadman Andy Schafer. “They’re just sound football players. They don’t make mistakes, they know the game and they’re always in the right position. They understand how to read keys.
“I’m not saying any of the teams we’ve played aren’t doing it right,” added Schafer. “Coldwater just does it differently and they know the game. Secondly, they know the weight room. Those kids are strong. You look at them and watch video, they’re put together and strong kids.”
A MAC program has been in the state semifinals every year since 1994. New Bremen is also in the state semifinals from the MAC in D-VII this weekend.

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Episode 44: Black Swamp Football Podcast

Tony Haynes and Lynn Groll look back at Columbus Grove’s Region 22 championship victory over Fairview while looking ahead to the Bulldogs’ matchup with top-ranked Coldwater in the state semifinals this Saturday.

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Column: Grove ends 240 days of torment

March 12, 2020: A dark day for winter sports athletes around the Buckeye State.
It was the day the OHSAA suspended all winter sports tournaments due to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
For Columbus Grove, it was a day several athletes had their livelihoods taken away. The unbeaten and top-ranked Bulldogs’ boys basketball team was set to play for a regional championship that night at Bowling Green State University’s Stroh Center against Parkway.
Meanwhile, a trio of Grove wrestlers were set to compete at the state wrestling tournament the next day in Columbus.
However, the Grove roundball team and grapplers Jeff Meyer, Dylan Sargent and Dakota Sargent never got their chance at state glory when the OHSAA called off all sports that Thursday afternoon.
The decision shook Columbus Grove head football coach Andy Schafer to his core, with several of his football players affected by the decision.

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Reynolds’ halftime speech ignites second-half Columbus Grove surge

DEFIANCE – An inspiring halftime speech from senior quarterback/defensive back Blake Reynolds left an impression on his Columbus Grove teammates and coaches on Saturday night in the Division VI, Region 22 championship game at Defiance High School.
The Bulldogs outscored Fairview 28-7 in the final 24 minutes to break a 14-14 halftime deadlock on the way to a 42-21 triumph.
Columbus Grove, which is now 5-0 in regional championship games, will play state power Coldwater in the state semifinals next Saturday at a site to be determined today by the OHSAA. The top-ranked Cavaliers rolled past Mechanicsburg, 35-14, in the Region 24 championship game Saturday night. The victory was the 600th in program history for the MAC juggernaut that’s won six state championships, finished state runner-up six times and is making its 16th Final 4 appearance.
Grove is playing in its first state semifinal since 2014 following three straight appearances from 2001-03.
“I can’t talk highly enough about our seniors,” said Grove headman Andy Schafer. “I wish I had a recording to capture the moment in the locker room when Blake – really for the first time ever – shared his heart. He got up in front of the team at halftime and shared his heart. There were tears, there was leadership.”

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Grove and Fairview set up for colossal clash in Region 22 championship tilt

It all comes down to this.
Division VI’s rugged Region 22 championship will be decided in Saturday evening’s skirmish between Columbus Grove and Fairview.
The Apaches had the right to host the game but moved the game to Defiance’s Fred J. Brown Stadium to allow for more spectators.
Both teams enter the dustup with perfect 9-0 marks.
Fairview, playing in its second regional championship in the last three years, has never ventured to the state semifinal in program history. Grove will be looking for its fifth Final 4 showing.
The winner will advance to the state semifinals at a site to be determined on Sunday against the winner of the Region 24 championship: Mechanicsburg at Coldwater.
Last week’s regional semifinals were vastly different for both Fairview and Columbus Grove.
Fairview had to erase a 27-7 second quarter lead at Colonel Crawford to rally for a 35-34 victory. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs rampaged past Archbold, the top seed in the region.

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NEW one-week playoff pick ’em contest

Get your picks in! We have a new contest this week. The individual picking the most game correctly will receive a $50 gift card from Herm’s Meats in Napoleon! To enter, you must pick all 26 of the playoff games from around the state this weekend (2 Division I state semifinals and 24 regional championships in Divisions II-VII). Your picks must be emailed to blackswampfootball@yahoo.com by 6 p.m. Friday (Nov. 6) to qualify. The TIEBREAKER will be the total points scored in the Region 28 championship game so include your estimate on total points scored in that game.

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Episode 43: Black Swamp Football Podcast

Tony Haynes and Lynn Groll look back at regional semifinals between Avon Lake at Central Catholic, Fairview at Colonel Crawford and Columbus Grove at Archbold. They look ahead to to this week’s regional final between Columbus Grove and Fairview while picking winners for all 30 playoff games around the state.

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Listen in to the

Black Swamp Football Podcast

Your #1 Source for everything happening in the Black Swamp area! Lynn Groll speaks with coaches, players, and other special guests to discuss local football. Check it out on iTunes today!

Black Swamp Football Podcast

Your #1 Source for everything happening in the Black Swamp area! Lynn Groll speaks with coaches, players, and other special guests to discuss local football. Check it out on iTunes today!

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Lynn Groll

Publisher of

Black Swamp Edition

of Touchdown Publications Magazine

Lynn Groll has been covering football in “The Black Swamp” area since 2002 and his enthusiasm for football in the area is second to none.

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