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Margaretta-McComb: Roth versus Roth

Mark Hazelwood • May 12, 2015 at 5:32 PM

It's all even.

And on that note, perhaps it's time to put an end to the McComb-Margaretta series now that each Roth brother has a victory over the other.

"Now we can call it a draw, we're done," said McComb coach Aaron Roth, a 1985 St. Mary Central Catholic graduate. "I can tell Troy now that we tied it up, we can put an end to it now."

Margaretta coach Troy Roth, a 1988 SMCC graduate, said other than the pregame pleasantries, not much changed when facing his older brother.

"It's not any different, although the pregame obviously is because a lot of us are friends with their players and coaches," Troy said. "It's a little more friendly, but once the game starts it's just another team over there with another coach."

McComb won the game, 51-41. The two brothers faced off back in 2003-04, with the Bears winning in a season that saw Margaretta claim their only Sandusky Bay Conference championship in the past 45 years.

Adding to the family moment was McComb's top player is Mason Roth, Aaron's son and Troy's nephew.

Mason being a senior played a big role in the game being scheduled, according to Troy, Margaretta's Athletic Director.

"It just kind of happened, but we always talked that when my nephew was a senior it'd be nice to bring him here and let people see him," Troy said. "And that's because Aaron was a very good player in this area, and people still follow him and like to see how he does.

"We talked and both teams had an opening so it worked out. We knew they were a good team, so we wanted to upgrade our schedule a little bit and I thought we did that with the quality of opponent they were."

A regional team two seasons ago at 20-4, the Panthers finished 17-4 last season and have high hopes for another Sweet 16 run and beyond this season.

"Three of them are three-year starters who have been in the regionals before and won their first 12 games in football this year, so they are used to winning," Aaron said of his team. "It's a good feeling for them, but this is a team that worries about what's in front of them and not down the road, and that's huge."

Aaron Roth was more than willing to bring his team to Castalia, and not just for a family visit.

"It was good because I knew they had a good team," he said. "And I wanted to expose our kids to a different kind of basketball somewhere they've never been before against a style they're not used to.

"Margaretta played a great game, so we got exactly what we wanted out of it."

Aaron agreed with Troy that once the game starts, he doesn't notice he's coaching against his brother. However, he also found himself more nervous than usual.

"Before the game for some reason, I was really nervous," he said. "I was in a regional final eight years ago as a coach and I don't remember being that nervous.

"It's not just coaching against your little brother, but having family and friends you haven't seen for a while. It's just a different feeling from what I get on a regular Friday night."

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