By STU SWARTZ
SPECIAL TO THE GOSHEN NEWS
Tom Wogomon of Northridge has engineered one of the more remarkable comeback seasons in local high school football history.
It’s not the first time he has performed that feat.
As head coach at Wawasee in 2009-10, Wogomon had the Warriors go from a 2-8 record to 6-4 in 12 months.
Wawasee also went from 3-5-1 to 7-2-1 under Don Storey in 1969-70 and from 4-6 to 9-5 under Myron Dickerson in 1984-85.
Northridge’s one-year reversal is not unprecedented.
The Raiders improved from 3-7 to 8-1 under the coaching of Bob Cornell in 1973-74 and from 2-9 to 6-5 under Jonathan Kirkton in 2008-09.
Goshen has enjoyed several “famine to feast” turnaround seasons in its long and storied history.
The Redskins went from 2-5-1 to 7-0-1 in 1922-23 with Roscoe Abbett the coach. Dal Whittle, Walt Hills, Jack Rathka, Clark Baxter, Vernon Chapman and Harrison Berkey were among players.
Bud Kerr guided GHS from 2-6 to 5-2-2 in 1940-41 with Don Whitmer, Walt Foxx, Floyd Koch, Chuck Keil and Ted Ogle among key players.
Goshen improved from 1-4-3 to 7-3 in 1957-58 under Coach Don Yoder and standout players like Bud Smith, Dan Berkey, Jim Yoder, Steve McCann and Steve Ellis.
GHS went from 2-8 to 6-4 under Joe Springer in 1964-65. Tom Stark, Steve Pittman, Gary Sherck, Jerry Hollinger, Floyd Trosper, Tom Goss, Don Ogle and Steve Huber were among players contributing.
Bill Doba was head coach when Goshen went from 1-9 to 6-4 in 1968-69. Among Redskins were Howard Delcamp, Dave Hess, Mike Clason, Steve Minnich, Bruce Huser, Jim Fretz, John Hawkins and Jim Whitehead.
Goshen jumped from 1-8 to 7-3 in 1974-75 under the guidance of Ken Mirer. Key players included Glen Miller, Karl Herr, Doug Nisley, Kirby Thompson, Mike Beachy, Kevin Cotherman, Andy Rieth, Richard Klatt and Mark Huser.
Fairfield's best turnarounds were 1-9 to 7-3 in 1977-78 under John Weaver, 0-8 to 5-4 in 1987-88 under Jim Jones and 4-6 to 11-1 under Bob Miller in 2005-06.
Concord went from 2-8 to 6-4 under Tom Conn in 1976-77 and from 2-8 to 10-5 under Tim Dawson in 1997-98.
NorthWood improved from 2-7 to 6-3 under Dan Ransberger in 1969-70 and West Noble from 3-6 to 9-1 under Harold “Dutch” Raether in 1973-74.
Wogomon is a 1986 graduate of Goshen High School where he was a 5-9 (160) inside linebacker under the coaching of Ken Mirer and Randy Robertson.
Wogomon led Goshen with 76 tackles, 68 assists and three fumble recoveries in his senior year.
He had 10 tackles and nine assists in a season-opening 7-0 home win over Northridge, 12 and seven in a game at Plymouth.
Other seniors on the 1985 GHS team were Dennis Bailey, Alex Garcia, Rod Geiser, Shan Hartsough, Matt Jerlecki, Dave Kercher, Trent Lambright, Brad Lehman, Greg Neff, Mike Rohn, Tom Unzicker and Dennis Wilcox.
As a junior, Wogomon had 44 tackles and 33 assists.
Pairings for the 41st annual state football tournament are scheduled for tonight with a network telecast at 7.
Goshen and Concord are in a Class 5A sectional with Central and Memorial. The winner advances to a regional game against the champion of a sectional involving No. 5-ranked Mishawaka, No. 6 Munster, Michigan City, South Bend Adams and LaPorte.
With only four teams, the local 5A sectional will have a bye Oct. 25, then play Nov. 1 and 8.
Northridge, NorthWood and Wawasee are in a 4A sectional with No. 10 Dwenger, No. 14 East Noble, Angola, DeKalb and Leo.
In the other Northern 4A sectional are No. 2 New Haven, Norwell, Marion, Logansport, Jay County, Frankfort, FW South and Columbia City.
Fairfield and Jimtown are in a 3A sectional with Culver Academy, Maconaquah, Peru, Rochester, Tippecanoe Valley and No. 17 Twin Lakes.
No. 1 Andrean heads the neighboring sectional with Calumet, Gary Wallace, Roosevelt, John Glenn, Hammond, Knox and Mishawaka Marian.
Lakeland and West Noble are in yet another 3A field with No. 13 Concordia, Bellmont, Luers, Garrett, Heritage and Whitko.
That champion advances to a regional to play the winner of a sectional involving No. 3 West Lafayette, No. 8 Yorktown, No. 9 Delta, No. 14 Western of Kokomo, Blackford, Eastbrook, Mississinewa and Northwestern of Kokomo.
Regional games are Nov. 15, semistates Nov. 22 and the six state championship games Thanksgiving weekend.