Tanner Printz runs up the middle for a 19-yard TD in the Patriots 56-6 Football Playoff win over Miami Valley Christian. (Dale Barger Photo)

Tri-Village to Host 2nd Round Game in Football Playoffs

NEW MADISON – The #2 Tri-Village football team hosted an OHSAA DVII Region 28 playoff game with #15 Miami Valley Christian of Cincinnati.  The Patriots overwhelmed the Lions by a score of 56-6 to move on to the second round.

The Patriots scored on the opening kick-off with Senior Jason Hale going straight up the middle for a 75-yard return and with just 6 seconds off the clock Tri-Village led in the game 7-0.

Before the first quarter was up Hale scooped up a fumble around mid-field and returned it for a 54-yard touchdown, his 4th scoring return of the season and 2nd in a span of just one quarter.

“Our goal is to execute on special teams and both offense and defense was able to do that. With Jason scoring on specials and defense it put us in a great position to pull away early in the game tonight,” Tri-Village coach Robert Burk said.

Hale has been a spark plug for us all year and when he gets his hands on the ball he makes plays.  Those 2 returns make 4 total return TDs by Hale on the year,” Burk added.

The Patriots were able to sandwich in between a 77-yard touchdown run by Reed Wehr and a 35-yard pass from Braden Keating to Justin Finkbine for scores to put the PATS up 28-0 at the end of the 1st quarter.

In the second quarter TV scored on a 19-yard touchdown run by Tanner Printz and a 17-yard run from Wehr. Then Keating connected again with Finkbine for a 24-yard score to end the half up 49-0.

The Lions would open the 2nd half with a long 46-yard pass for a score denying the Patriots a shutout.

But with the game securely in-hand and a running clock TV finished the game with one more score on an 8-yard run by Joshua Randall.  The Patriots efficiency on offense was an impressive 42 points in just 25 offensive snaps in their 56-6 win. 

With the expanded 16 team play-offs the team with the better record can host the first two rounds which give Tri-Village home field advantage they will need as they take on the defending DVII state champion New Bremen Cardinals.

“We always tell our kids winning is a precious thing and now we have an opportunity to have the reigning state champs come to our place in a win or go home scenario, you can’t ask for a better situation than that.  New Bremen is a very good team, and we expect to get their best,” Coach Burk said. 

New Bremen comes in with returning quarterback David Homan who was the MAC offensive player of the year.  The 8-3 Cardinals losses this year were to Marion Local, Versailles and St. Henry so the Patriots will be playing a battle tested team.

“We’re going to put in a full week of work to get ready for them, it should be a lot of fun,” coach Burk concluded.

Senior Jason Hale bolts up the middle on the opening kick-off for a 75-yard touchdown return. (Dale Barger Photo)
Reed Wehr slipped this tackle and ran 77-yard for a TD in Patriots win. (Dale Barger Photo)
Wyatt Plush wraps up the Lions ball-carrier and takes him to the ground. (Dale Barger Photo)
Seth Cook closes in to make a tackle behind the line of scrimmage. (Dale Barger Photo)
Austin Rismiller stops this receiver in his tracks after making a catch. (Dale Barger Photo)

Dale Barger / Sports Editor

Dale Barger is a lifelong sports enthusiast and has covered high school athletics for nearly 20 years in Southwest Ohio and now becomes sports editor for Darke County now. For 18 years Dale has been a sportswriter for The Daily Advocate and has been published in online sorts magazines and conference websites. Dale is also an accomplished photographer who has captured thousands of athletes in action over the years. Dale is a member of The Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association and was a 2019 recipient of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Southwest District Media Service Award. Dale lives on a 72-acre farm outside of New Madison, Ohio and is married to Rita Ann (Fourman) Barger and together they have two sons and three grandkids. If you don’t see Dale at a sporting event you might catch him following his other passion – photographing nature and wildlife. Contact Darke County Now Editor Media Sports Editor Dale Barger at dbarger@darkecountynow.com.

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