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North last Oldham standing

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North Oldham only Oldham left after 42-20 playoff win

By Jason Stamm

GOSHEN --- It wasn’t pretty, but North Oldham coach Billy Martin said afterward that he’d take it.

The Mustangs scored the game’s first 29 points en route to a 42-20 win over visiting Valley in the first round of the Class 4A state football playoffs on Friday.

But North Oldham didn’t make it easy on itself.

“Anything this time of year, you’re just happy for it and move on,” Martin said. “It doesn’t matter how we get it and it doesn’t change the fact that there’s 16 teams left in our division and we’re one of ‘em. To be honest, we’re about 20 inches away from being undefeated.”

Two of the Mustangs’ first three possessions ended in a turnover on downs. Luckily for North Oldham, the Vikings couldn’t get anything going either, turning the ball over on downs on three of its five first half possessions and punting on the other two.

“We just started off slow because we weren’t fully ready for the speed they came out with and the intensity right off the bat,” senior quarterback Cameron Renaud said. “We just couldn’t match it right off the bat, but we stepped up and matched it in the second quarter.”

Renaud was slow to start himself, completing one of his first four passes for a loss of two. He and the rest of the Mustangs’ offense jump-started with his 35-yard pass to senior wide receiver Jacob Sanders on a fade route with 5:57 left in the second quarter to put North Oldham up 14-0.

“We were just hitting our blocks and hitting the holes really hard,” Renaud said. “They just couldn’t stop us.”

The Mustangs added another touchdown before halftime on a 58-yard shovel pass from Renaud to junior wingback Jake Evans. Renaud finished the night 7-13 for 165 yards.

From there, North Oldham did the bulk of its damage on the ground. Junior running back Jacob Raymond was the primary catalyst, with 11 carries for 125 yards. His 31-yard touchdown run with 7:51 left in the third quarter gave the Mustangs a 28-0 lead.

“Our line was phenomenal,” Raymond said. “At the beginning, they were blitzing hard on motion sweeps. We adjusted to that and picked it up and it started working.”

Valley scored three touchdowns over the final three quarters, but overall gave Martin plenty to be pleased about.

“It was just us adjusting to what they were doing,” he said. “We did a pretty good job getting into formations and different things to give us numerical advantages in certain spots.”

With losses by Oldham County and South Oldham, North Oldham is the lone Oldham team still alive in the playoffs. The Mustangs will travel to Western on Friday in the second round of the playoffs, game-time to be announced. At 6-5, the Warriors defeated Waggener 28-15 in the first round of the playoffs on Friday.

“We’ll look back at the film and see plenty of things we need to work on,” Martin said. “We’re just thankful we have the opportunity to work on those things. Penalties are a big thing I’m not happy with. We’re too disciplined and too good to get some of those penalties.”

Emails us about this story at: sports@oldhamera.com.