DARKE COUNTY – Tri-Village’s first varsity football game will highlight week one’s slate of high school football action in Darke County.
After starting a football program and playing a junior varsity season in 2015, Tri-Village is moving up to a varsity schedule this season. The Patriots will play as a conference independent this year before next year’s planned entrance into the Cross County Conference.
Tri-Village, which is a Division VII program, will play its first varsity game against the Jefferson Broncos at 7:30 p.m. Friday in New Madison. One year ago Jefferson went 3-7.
Mississinawa Valley is starting off the 2016 season with a home game against cross-town rival Union City, Indiana. Mississinawa Valley, which is coming off a 0-10 season, lost 26-14 to Union City last year. Union City started its regular season last week with a 55-7 loss to Tri.
Bradford also is starting off the 2016 season with a home game against Midwest Athletic Conference member New Bremen. Last year New Bremen beat Bradford 21-0 for its lone win of the season. Bradford, which is in its second consecutive season of conference independence in football, went 4-6 a year ago and finished strong with three wins in its final five games.
Greenville will begin its season with a road game at Eaton. Last year the Green Wave withstood the Eagles’ 20-6 second half surge to win 30-20. Greenville went on to finish the 2015 season with a 4-6 record while Eaton finished 2-8.
Versailles, a Division V team, will travel to Division III Celina for its season opener. Last year Versailles beat Celina 28-7 in the season opener, but the Tigers finished the 2015 season with a 4-6 record while the Bulldogs went on to a 7-3 mark in the regular season and an appearance in the Ohio High School Athletic Association playoffs.
Arcanum will try to start the 2016 season off right with a game against Riverside in DeGraff. Last year Riverside, who went 9-1 in the regular season and earned a spot in the OHSAA playoffs, beat Arcanum 20-7. The Trojans ended up losing their first five games before rebounding and winning five straight to finish the season 5-5.
Ansonia has a long distance to travel in week one as the Tigers go to Columbus West High School in Columbus to face Africentric Early College. Last year Ansonia beat Africentric in a 44-42 shootout. Both teams went 2-8 in 2015.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.