Tipp braces for showdown with Trotwood

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Tipp braces for showdown with Trotwood

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Bill Lackey
The Tippecanoe defense has met all challenges, including Shawnee quarterback Saalih Muhammad. Bill Lackey/Staff

Think unbeaten Tippecanoe might be on an emotional high going into tonight’s historic high school playoff football game against Trotwood-Madison?

“No doubt,” Tipp coach Charlie Burgbacher said. “Everybody’s going to say where does this (Tipp) team rank. It’s not fair to teams of the past, but this team is pretty darn good. They’ve had the motivation to set the bar high. They’ve heard about the other teams that we’ve had. These kids want to establish a new bar.”

All the remaining area teams in the playoffs can do just that by winning Week 3 postseason games this weekend. Tipp (12-0) and mighty Trotwood-Madison (9-2) get top billing at 7:30 p.m. today in a Division III, Region 14 showdown at Piqua’s Alexander Stadium – Purk Field.

Also today, it’s Alter (11-1) vs. defending D-IV state champion Clinton-Massie (11-1) in a D-IV, Region 14 final at Welcome Stadium. In a rare D-V, Region 22 final between Ohio Heritage Conference rivals, it’s Mechanicsburg (10-2) vs. West Liberty-Salem (10-2) at Wapakoneta Harmon Field.

At 7 p.m. Saturday, Wayne (11-1) carries the last remaining area D-I, Region 2 hope vs. Hilliard Davidson (12-0) at Upper Arlington. In D-V, Region 16 it’s Coldwater (10-2) vs. Huron (9-3) at Findlay and Hamilton Badin (10-2) vs. West Jefferson (11-1) in a D-V, Region 18 contest.

Finally, Triad (12-0) plays Marion Local (12-0) in a D-VII, Region 26 battle of unbeatens.

All the Division II-VII winners advance to next week’s state semifinals. The D-I winners move on to a regional final. Neutral sites for the next round’s games will be announced by the Ohio High School Athletic Association on Sunday.

Tipp and Trotwood have never played. This intriguing contest only came about because both fielded outstanding teams and, as expected, went deep into the ultra competitive and restructured D-III playoffs. Trotwood has been to three straight D-II state title games, winning in 2011. But the Rams fell to D-III this season, same as Tipp.

Tipp ruled the Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Trail division this season. Trotwood did likewise in the Greater Western Ohio Conference North. Never has a CBC team played a GWOC team this deep into the playoffs.

“It should be an exciting game,” said Burgbacher.

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