GALION — In 2018, Northmor’s football team accomplished something that no other team had done in the program’s history. Technically, the Knights did three things.
On Nov. 2, the Knights hosted the Chillicothe Southeastern Panthers in their first home playoff football game. Northmor won that game 28-16,, the first football playoff win in school history. Although their season ended the following week against Beverly Fort Frye, 41-23, for the second season in a row, the Golden Knights’ 10 wins in a season also was the most in program history.
This season, Northmor looks to continue that momentum, and will do so with much of the same team as a year ago.
Even with D’Marcus Hudson, Tony Martinez and Cole Dille graduating, not much else on the roster changes. Hudson earned first-team, All-Ohio honors last season while Martinez and Dille received first-team, all-conference nods.
Another key element gone this season is Conor Becker, a first-team, All-Ohioan in 2018, as well as a state champion wrestler, wh0 is down with a knee injury.
Despite the returning roster and recent success, head coach Scott Armrose, isn’t making any promises.
“Last season we feel like we turned a corner as a program,” he said. “We expect to compete in every gamey. At the same time, we have to understand that any past success does not guarantee success in the future. We’ve had a great offseason in the weight room and are excited to see how it pays off on Friday nights.”
At quarterback this season is returning team captain Hunter Mariotti, now a senior. Mariotti threw for more than 1,500 yards last season and tossed 20 touchdown passes, with just three interceptions. Wyatt Reeder looks to step in as the fullback as Mariotti’s passing options remain the same with Gavin Ramos and Blake Miller.
Ramos was second-team, all-conference a season ago while Miller — also a force on defense — earned special mention All-Ohio and first-team, all-conference nods at tight end. Most of the offensive line returns, including team captain Brandon Planey. Planey racked up first-team, all-conference, first-team Central District and special mention All-Ohio accolades last year. Planey, like Miller, is also a fantastic defender.
The Golden Knights begin play Friday, Aug. 30 — at home — against Elgin. Following non-conference meetings with Worthington Christian and Lucas — both away — Northmor returns home to begin Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference play against Centerburg on Friday, Sept. 20.
“Highland has proven itself the team to beat in the KMAC,” Armrose said. “They graduated a really good class, but had a dominant junior varsity team last season. East Knox returns many starters from an 8-2 team. Centerburg and Cardington had many young players last year and will both be much improved this season. The KMAC will be competitive again this season.”
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