By From staff reports
The Flyers posted a dominating 22-14 win over the Tigers, which gave the team a much needed boost for the rest of the season.
This year, the Flyers have done a 180-degree turn and are 4-1 and state-ranked as the team makes the trip to Hole Field on Friday.
The Tigers, however, are 5-0 again and the top-ranked team in Division V as this long-time rivalry continues.
Marion went through a lot of troubles last season in finishing 4-6 and missing the playoffs for the first time in Tim Goodwin's tenure as head coach.
Versailles, meanwhile, lost two of its next three games -- to Coldwater and St. Henry, before rebounding and making the Division IV state final to finish 11-4 on the season. This year, Al Hetrick's team has been solid with a number of players doing the damage. Versailles has posted two shutouts and have allowed just 26 points on the season (5.2 ppg.) while averaging 45.8 points of offense per game.
The Flyers, though, have had the best of the series, which dates back to 1946, having won five out of the last six meetings.
Marion -- The Flyers' defense shined last week in pitching the second straight shutout of the season with a 14-0 win over Minster. Marion shut down the running game and has allowed just two points the last nine quarters -- a safety against St. Henry.
This week, the Flyers will have to contend with a multi-faceted offensive attack. Five players have rushed for 120 yards or more and three have 260 yards or more this season. Nine players have also scored at least two touchdowns.
Containment of the big play is the key to the game for the Flyers since the Tigers are loaded with big-play potential.
Keep an eye on... Luke Homan, #25, sophomore linebacker.
Homan has been a solid player on defense this season, leading the Flyers with 35 tackles and four sacks.
Versailles -- The Tigers were given their first big test of the season last week against the then-Division VI number-one ranked St. John's Blue Jays. The Tigers passed the test with flying colors winning by nine in hostile territory at Stadium Park.
Now the bulk of the remaining schedule has some teeth. After Marion, Coldwater (week eight) and St. Henry (week nine) await. Last year that made for two losses and put the Tigers' playoffs chances in limbo for a short time.
The Flyers are improved over last season with experience everywhere. Last year the Flyers gutted their way to a win at home and this year experience will be a key.
Marion will try and get Curtis Moeller started on the running, but sophomore quarterback Chris Stucke has been solid all season and has a solid receiving corps in Mitch Thobe (319 yards on 18 catches) and Damon Bertke (10 catches for 100 yards).
Keep an eye on... Brian Schwie-terman, #76, junior defensive end.
The Tigers had to replace their defensive line this season after graduation took a healthy chunk of it in June.
Schwieterman has stepped in nicely to make the transition a comfortable one.
Schwieterman has 20 tackles -- one of four players with that total or more -- but leads the team and is among the area leaders with four sacks.