Coldwater, Marion Local to face off in Touchdown 7′s Game of the Week

MARIA STEIN — Coldwater and Marion Local have enjoyed almost unbelievable levels of success in football since 2000. The yearly matchup is always highly anticipated and the two teams didn’t play because of the shortened schedule due to the pandemic in 2020.

Both teams are once again state title contenders and state ranked. Marion Local is the top ranked team in Division VII and the Flyers are 8-0. Coldwater is 7-1 and ranked 3rd in Division VI.

This matchup is one high school football plans all across the state have their eyes on.

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“Kind of means more,” Peyton Otte, Marion Local senior quarterback, said. “Some games come you see the crowds at some of these games it’s massive. Everybody just kind of gets into it. Kind of feels like an Ohio State-Michigan kind of week.”

“I think it has to be due to our playoff success,” Tim Goodwin, Marion Local’s head coach, said. “When both teams made long runs in the tournament year after year and went over to Massillon or Canton six to eight years in a row, you get some name recognition there I guess.”

Marion Local made it to nine consecutive state championship games from 2011 to 2019. Coldwater played in eight consecutive state championship games from 2009-2016.

“A good respectful rivalry where our kids know their kids, their kids know our kids,” Chip Otten, Coldwater head coach, said. “Coach Goodwin’s been at Marion for whatever it’s been 20 years. I’ve been at Coldwater now for 20. It’s just a good matchup. The fans love this game.”

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The schools have garnered more and more attention especially with the recent levels of success. Marion Local and Coldwater have won a combined 48 state championships across sports. 18 of those have come in football (11 for Marion Local, 7 for Coldwater).

The Midwest Athletic Conference has been exceptional on the gridiron as well. The conference boasts 37 state championships in football, not including six that Versailles won prior to joining the MAC.

It’s not uncommon to see multiple teams from the MAC win state championships in a single season.

“It’s just awesome that we even get the opportunity to play in this type of game,” Darin Schmitmeyer, Coldwater senior linebacker, said. “It’s definitely just a game that every kid just dreams of playing in. We just love rivalry week and we just want to go out there and give it all we got and show people that we’re the best team in the MAC.”

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“Feels good for our programs, feels good for our towns that people are watching gosh way back when I was playing I guess people in Dayton had no idea that Coldwater even existed let alone played good sports,” Otten said. “That 30, 40, 50 years of excellence in our area has brought a lot of attention which is great.”

Four of the last five regular season meetings between Coldwater and Marion Local have been decided by six points or less. Both teams expect a similar battle Friday night.

James Rider

James Rider

I was born in Virginia and have moved several times in my life as a member of an Air Force family. I've lived in Virginia, California, Germany, England, and Ohio. I graduated from Centerville High School and then went on to attend Ball State University where I graduated with a bachelor's degree.