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Vote: Who had the best performance in the 2023 Ohio high school football state championships?

Tell us who had the best performance in Ohio high school football state championships

This past weekend, the Ohio High School Athletic Association held the football state championship games in Canton at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium.

There were plenty of good performances across the seven games and here are the candidates for the top ones. Read through the nominees and cast your vote.

Voting ends Sunday, December 10 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Will Beers, Kirtland

Scored two touchdowns in the Division VI championship game win over Versailles, including a 90-yard kick return in the second quarter.

"His kick return when it was 13-7 was big," Kirtland head coach Tiger LaVerde said. "They had a little momentum. And I don't know how long it was 90 yards or something, but that was a big momentum change." 

Chase Bond, Massillon

Blocked a punt in the second quarter of Massillon's 7-2 win over Archbishop Hoban in the Division II state championship game that led to the only touchdown of the game.

“I knew I knew it was going to happen before the play type of thing," Bond said. "I just refused to be blocked."

Marquan Braswell, Toledo Central Catholic

In the 27-7 Division III state championship game win over Bishop Watterson, Braswell had 169 yards rushing and a pair of touchdowns on 22 carries. His biggest run of the game might have been one on which he didn't score, as he went 72 yards to the Watterson 5 midway through the fourth quarter to set up the final touchdown of the game. 

"I was mad that I didn't score but I was I was happy," Braswell said. "I was happy that I got the yards that I got and got my team to seal the game."

Griffin Bruns, Marion Local

His 80-yard interception return for a touchdown in the second quarter of the Division VII state championship game was a backbreaker for Dalton, as it put Marion Local up 21-0.

"The pick-six obviously was a backbreaker when they had that nice drive, Griff made a great read on that," Marion Local head coach Tim Goodwin said.

Nate Gregory, St. Edward

In a win over Springfield in the Division I state championship game, Gregory led the charge defensively for the Eagles with 13 tackles, a sack and 3.5 tackles for loss. 

D'Shawntae Jones, Glenville

The senior running back had 161 yards and a touchdown on 30 carries as Glenville won its second straight Division IV state championship with a 38-3 win over Archbishop Alter. 

"I still say he's under recruited," Glenville head coach Ginn, Sr. said. "I don't know what they want. I don't know what they are looking at. Their evaluation is poor to me. What you can get in him you can't see on film first of all. He's a bulldog inside. He loves football. But I don't know what they want. They have their reasons but somebody is going to get him. If you don't take him, he is going to beat you."

Jayvin "Bay Bay" Norman, Springfield

In the loss to St. Edward in the Division I championship game, Norman had 76 yards rushing and a touchdown and also took a kickoff return 93 yards for a score.

Kyle Otte, Marion Local

The senior running back had 66 yards rushing, 32 yards receiving and 44 yards in punt returns and also had a rushing and receiving touchdown in a 38-0 win over Dalton in the Division VII state championship game

Dorian Pringle, Massillon

The senior led the Tigers with 14 tackles, including a pair of tackles for loss, in Massillon's 7-2 win over Archbishop Hoban in the Division II state championship game. He had missed the last several games with an injury.

“It was pretty important to me (to play),” Pringle said. “I just wanted to suit up again with my brothers for one last time and try to bring something else to the team like energy.”

Dominic Purcell, Bishop Watterson

In the loss to Toledo Central Catholic, Purcell set an OHSAA state championship game record (regardless of division) for the most tackles in a game with 21. He also had a sack and 2.5 tackles for loss.

Brayden Richards, Perry

Richards finished with 124 yards rushing and a score on 11 carries and also completed three of his four passes for 61 yards and touchdown and caught two passes for 41 yards as Perry defeated Liberty Center  21-14 in the Division V state championship game.

Luke Sivon, Perry

In the Division V championship game win over Liberty Center, caught a 42-yard touchdown pass from Walter Moses and then a 37-yarder from Brayden Richards. He finished with seven catches for 139 yards.

Ruel Tomlinson, Glenville

In a 38-3 win over Archbishop Alter in the Division IV championship game, the quarterback threw for 207 yards and three touchdowns and added 83 yards and two scores on the ground. 

"I'm proud of him," Glenville head coach Ted Ginn, Sr. said. "For three years (at Walsh) he really never played. But I've known him ever since he was a little boy. To see him come and develop to lead us all the way to a state title, it shows he can achieve at the highest level in the position of quarterback."

Brandon White, St. Edward

In the 31-21 win over Springfield in the Division I championship game, the sophomore running back carried the ball 32 times for 235 yards and three touchdowns. 

The thing about it is vision in the hole," St. Edward head coach Tom Lombardo said. "He sees the cut, sets up his box and he accelerates. And a lot of that is that is not kind of teachable."

Damarion Witten, Glenville

The Ohio State commit had 86 yards receiving and a pair of touchdowns as the Tarblooders defeated Archbishop Alter 38-3 in the Division IV state championship.

"He can play seven positions on the football field and can be a pro at all of them," Glenville head coach Ted Ginn, Sr. said. "He can kick, he can punt, he can quarterback, he can be receiver, he can be tight end, he can be a defensive end, he can be a safety. He can do it all. He's real special. And I think he's gonna be a superstar at Ohio State."

(Feature photo: St. Edward running back Brandon White protects the ball on a run during the 2023 Division I state championship game on December 1, 2023. Photo credit: Jeff Harwell, SBLive Sports)

-- Ryan Isley | | @sbliveoh