TC’s Moore, Clyde’s Gray picked for North-South game
Two area players and a local coach will have their football seasons extended through the spring after being chosen Tuesday for the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association North-South Classic.
The Classic is split into two games, one for Division I-III schools, and the other for Division IV-VII schools. Both games occur April 26 at Dayton’s Welcome Stadium, with the large schools kicking off at 1 p.m., followed by the small schools at 4:30 p.m.
Columbian’s Isiah Moore and Clyde’s Derek Gray will play in the opener for the North, with both suiting up on the offense.
For Moore, a 6-foot-4, 305-pounder who will play at Bowling Green State University, the game offers one more chance for him to shine on the high school field.
Columbian coach Brian Colatruglio expects nothing less from his three-year starter.
“This is a great honor. This comes from other coaches around the state, guys who watch film and know. They’re picking the best of the best. It’s a great honor and a great experience for him,” he said. “He’s going to be playing at the Division I level and this is a great chance for him to seek how he stacks up against other players in Ohio.
“He’s definitely one of the top linemen in the state of Ohio,” Colatruglio said. “I coached in this game last year and as a junior he would have been the best lineman on the team. There’s no doubt he’s talented enough to play in this game and hold his own against the competition.”
He held it during his senior season.
Moore, who was named the district’s top lineman, anchored an offensive line that helped the Tornadoes gain 2,391 yards and win 10 games in a row before bowing out in the regional semifinals.
Clyde’s Derek Gray made the North’s roster, after helping the Fliers to the Division II state semifinals.
The first-year player primarily saw time as a wide receiver, catching 13 TD passes
“It’s an honor; I know not that many people from this area get into it,” he said. “I’m gonna try to do the best that I can in that game and try to support my area and do as well as I can.”
Gray’s basketball and football coach, Ryan Carter, said it’s great to see his player recognized.
“I was fortunate enough to play in that game, and I know what it’s all about,” he said. “You play against some of the best players in the state, and I think that’s a great honor for him.”
Carey coach Todd Worst will serve as an assistant for the North in the small school game, and said he hopes to learn as much as he can in a variety of areas.
He’s not sure yet where he’ll be utilized, but he has an inkling where he won’t.
“Well, considering my background in the wishbone and in running the ball, I think they’re leaning toward a more spread offense,” he said with a laugh. “That’s why I’d like to learn some more about the spread.
“It makes me a little nervous,” he said of being picked. “You just don’t know what’s going to be expected and if there’s any expectations coming into it. I just try to fill in the holes wherever they ask me to and give some good ideas when asked.”