High-powered Senecas, Golden Bears set to face off

Tonight at Frost-Kalnow Stadium, Calvert will face a daunting task.

Slowing down the Gibsonburg offense.

Behind the quarterbacking of Ryan Clark, the rushing of Madison Jaso and a powerful offensive line, the Golden Bears are averaging more than 49 points a game.

Calvert coach Todd Fox knows how tough the Gibsonburg offense can be. When the teams clashed a year ago as Toledo Area Athletic Conference rivals, the Golden Bears lit up the scoreboard with a 50-26 win.

“You just try to slow it down, and hopefully your offense can respond to their offense,” Fox said. “They have a lot of weapons and they’re very well-coached.”

Gibsonburg coach Steve Reser, a Calvert graduate, is expecting a tough test from the Senecas.

“We know this is a big game; every game is a big game,” Reser said. “We know Calvert has a good football team. Coach Fox does a good job. We know it will be a great test for us Friday night. (The Senecas) are very effective at what they do.”

And on offense, Calvert can do almost anything, with a good offensive line and maturing quarterback in Park Hemminger. It also has a solid running back in Fred Fabrizio and hard-to-defend receivers in Alex Keller and Corbin Kantner.

Reser said he knows the Calvert offense will make plays.

“They’ve had a nice balance, more so than in previous years,” Reser said. “All we need to do is be realistic. There will be plays made on both sides, but (we need to make sure) we’re not so high on the mountain and not too low in the valley.”

As for Gibsonburg’s offense, Fox said he’s impressed with the depth it has. The team lost Jaso for a game, and has played at times without some starting linemen, but has remained effective.

“We knew,” Fox said of the Golden Bears’ depth. “We knew Jaso’s a very good running back, but they also have some other backs who are very good. Clark was the (TAAC) league MVP last year, player of the year offensively, so he’s very good. Out at the edge receivers, they’re very good, and then they’ve got some great offensive linemen, so offensively they’re very strong, and just as strong defensively.”

Reser said he’s impressed with the Senecas’ defense.

“I really think they’re good all over,” he said. “We’re gonna need to be sound. We’re gonna need to take what Calvert gives us and be patient.”

Calvert is coming off a lopsided win over Lakota, and was asked about carrying that momentum over.

“Each week we try to get better, and each week we find what we need to get better at,” Fox said. “I think last week was the first time we put all of the pieces together, but we found some things we need to improve on this week. We need to finish plays, we need to keep playing until the whistle blows. For us, it’s just part of the season process, getting better every week.”

Kickoff is at 7 p.m.