Kettering Firebirds announce 2022 varsity football schedule - Ohio High School Athletic Association adds two new sports


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Kettering, Ohio – The Kettering Fairmont Firebirds varsity football team announced their 2022 schedule this morning. The Firebirds will be hoping to improve on their 6-5 overall records and 3-4 league record that got them a 5th place in the 2021 Greater Western Ohio Conference (GWOC) final standings. Kettering made the 2021 postseason but lost to Perrysburg 14-0 in their opening game.

The Firebirds will open their season on Friday, August 18, 2022, against their crosstown rival Archbishop Alter Knights. The 2022 Battle of Kettering will take place at Kettering’s Chester A. Roush Stadium. The 2021 Knights finished the year with a 6-6 overall record. They were 3-2 in the Greater Catholic North conference and placed 3rd. In 2021 the Firebirds opened their season with a thrilling win at the Battle of Kettering beating the Knights 16-7.

In week 2, the Firebirds will square off against the Trotwood Madison Rams. The game will take place on Friday, August 26, 2022, in Trotwood. The Rams were 4-6 overall in 2021. The Firebirds handily defeated the Rams in 2021 by a score of 35-0.

On Friday, September 2, 2022, Fairmont will return to Kettering’s Roush Stadium to take on the La Salle Lancers of Cincinnati. La Salle is an all boys Catholic school out of Cincinnati. The Lancers play out of the Greater Catholic South conference. In 2021 they had a 7-6 overall record but finished last in conference play with an 0-3 conference record. The Kettering Sentinel could not locate any records of any previous varsity football games between the Firebirds and Lancers. The two teams definitely have not played since Head Coach David Miller took over the Firebirds

On Friday, September 9th the Firebirds will travel to Clayton to open their 2022 Greater Western Ohio Conference GWOC schedule against the Northmont Thunderbolts. Northmont ended the 2021 season with a 3-7 record. They were only 1-6 in GWOC play and finished 7th. The Firebirds beat the Thunderbolts in 2021. But it was a tough game with the Firebirds narrowly edging Northmont 24-21.

Then on Friday, September 16, 2022, the Firebirds will return home for a matchup against the Springboro Panthers. The Springboro game will also be Kettering’s 2022 Homecoming game. In 2021 Springboro was 5-5 overall. The Panthers finished one spot ahead of Kettering in GWOC with a 4-3 conference record. The Firebirds will be looking to turn the tables on Springboro this year after losing to the Panthers in a hard-fought close 2021 game by a score of 15-14.

Week 6 will feature Kettering Fairmont taking on 2021 GWOC Champions and State 2nd place finisher Springfield Wildcats. The Firebirds will have to travel to Springfield for this matchup. Springfield finished 2021 with a 13-2 overall record. They only had one regular season loss to Miamisburg 22-21. They also went 5-1 in the postseason losing only the Championship game 23-13 against Lakewood St. Edward. The Firebirds never scored in their 2021 matchup against the Wildcats, losing 17-0.

On Friday, September 30th the Firebirds will return to Kettering to go up against the Miamisburg Vikings. Despite edging eventual GWOC Champion and State runner-up Springfield by a point, the Vikings finished the 2021 season with a 6-5 record. They were 3-4 in GWOC play and finished 6th
in the conference. The Vikings were actually tied with the Firebirds in the conference, but Kettering won the head-to-head tiebreaker by beating Miamisburg 24-6 in their 2021 matchup.

The Firebirds will open the month of October with their final regular season road game against the Wayne Warriors on October 7th. Wayne finished the 2021 season with an 8-3 record. They were 6-1 in GWOC and placed second because they had 2 regular season losses, including their head-to-head battle with Springfield, 21-14. Kettering lost their 2021 matchup against the Warriors 17-14 in yet another close game.

On Friday, October 14, 2022, Fairmont will battle the Centerville Elks. The 2022 matchup against the Elks will take place at Kettering’s Roush Stadium. The Elks were 8-4 on the 2021 season. They were also 5-2 in GWOC play, which was good enough for a 3rd place finish. In 2021 the Elks and Firebirds played the Firebird’s only overtime game of the season. The Firebirds came out of that overtime battle on the losing end, 28-21.

The Firebird’s final regular season game will be against the Beavercreek Beavers on Friday, October 21, 2022. Kettering will wrap up the 2022 campaign at Roush Stadium. In 2021 The Beavers were 0-10 and did not participate in the postseason. They were 0-7 in GWOC play and finished in 8th
place in the conference. The Firebirds beat the Beavers in their final 2021 regular season game by a 46-19 score.

With the 2022 schedule set, Coach Miller and the Firebirds can now focus on improving on their 2021 season performance. In 2021 the Firebirds had a 1-dimensional rushing offense lead by conference rushing leader Drew Baker who GWOC says rushed for 1533 yards. Fairmont Quarterback Male’k Hillon was only 10-15 for 162 passing yards on the year. According to GWOC Hillon was a Senior and Baker was a Junior during the 2021 season. So, it will be interesting to see if the Firebirds can develop a more well-rounded offense in 2022 or if the loss of their Senior Quarterback will result in the team relying even more upon their talented veteran rusher Baker.

In other High School Prep Sports news, the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) announced on January 13, 2021, that they will be adding Girls Wrestling and Boys Volleyball to statewide athletic offerings. According to OHSAA, the Board voted unanimously to add these sports to the 2022-23 season lineup. The addition of the two sports now gives OHSAA a lineup of 28 sports, 14 boys and 14 girls. OHSAA also announced that they are looking to partner with a group to provide Esports (gaming) tournaments.

Kettering Athletic Director Chris Weaver says that the OHSAA move to add Boys Volleyball and Girls Wrestling will not have a significant impact on Kettering athletics. Weaver said that Kettering has had a boys volleyball program for 8 years. He also said that currently the district only has 2 girls competing in wrestling. Consequently, Weaver stated, “Although we don't anticipate starting an all girls team immediately, it could be something that happens in the future if there's enough interest.”

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