Marietta High is in a spoiler's role.
The underdog Tigers are also playing for pride as they are scheduled to host Dover in an East Central Ohio League football game at 7:30 p.m. this Friday at Don Drumm Stadium.
Finally, after three consecutive road games and losse, MHS (2-6 overall, 1-3 ECOL Scarlet Division) is back home to close out the season, first against the Dan Ifft-coached Tornadoes (7-1, 3-0) and then versus the Zanesville Blue Devils on Oct. 28.
Dover, which has now won 32 straight league games, was rated No. 3 in Region 11 in Ohio Division 3 going into last Friday night's Cambridge game at Crater Stadium. The top eight schools in each region qualify for the postseason playoffs.
"The coaches and I spent most of (Sunday) looking at Dover (on film)," said first-year Marietta head football coach Bob Springer. "They're simply a very good football team who should go far into the playoffs."
Dover had a stiff test on the gridiron against visiting Cambridge (6-2,3-1) but prevailed 31-24. The Tornadoes have now captured six consecutive wins against the Bobcats.
Dover senior quarterback Derik Swinderman led the way, completing 17 of 30 passes for 266 yards and three touchdowns - two of which went to junior Trey Wallick.
Wallick finished with four receptions for 59 yards and junior Mason Mamarella also had four catches for 59 yards and one TD. Senior Logan Maholm led all receivers with seven snares for 83 yards.
"They spread the field most of the time and go empty backfield," Springer said. "They throw, throw, throw, requiring a lot of weekly adjustments for most teams.
"Formation-wise, they will go trips on one side and twins on the other, the QB (Swinderman) is more than capable of running to the point that they also run a couple of unconventional formations. The 'A' which spreads the O-line into three groupings with the QB, an RB, center and another linman in the middle of the field. It can turn the game into a four-on-four contest."
Defensively, Dover was unable to contain Cambridge's Dashaun Lewis, who rushed for 204 yards on 32 carries and one touchdown. Bobcat QB Trevor Wilson also completed nine of 15 throws for 102 yards and two scores.
"Defensively, Dover runs almost every D we see - a three-front, a four-front and a five-front," Springer said.
Marietta, with Dedder Baker and Mitchel Gearhart carrying the football, should be able to run on Dover. Gearhart had a team-leading 45 rushing yards on five carries against host Bishop Rosecrans last Friday night.
QB Justin Futrell should be able to throw the ball, too, against the Tornadoes.
On the subject of Rosecrans, MHS struggled offensively against the DVI Bishops at John D. Sulsberger Memorial Stadium in Zanesville, dropping a 28-0 decision. This was the first time this season that the Tigers have been kept off the scoreboard.
Marietta finished with seven first downs and 150 total yards. The Tigers nearly averted a blanking but a second-quarter field goal attempt was blocked. Prior that kick, the orange and black, running out of a power-I formation, had had an 11-play drive stall at the Rosecrans 15.