Tuesday, October 15th, 2013
Teams still fighting for postseason positions
By Bruce Monnin
With the seventh week of the high school football regular season now in the books, this article will be used to show the effects of last weekend's results. Another story later in the week will be used to project what is expected to happen by the end of the season.
Four Western Buckeye League teams (Defiance, Wapakoneta, Celina and Kenton) are currently in the top eight in their respective regions. Lima Bath is the only one of the other six WBL teams still alive with a legitimate chance to move up into postseason contention during the next three weeks.
By contrast, the Midwest Athletic Conference currently has only two teams in the top eight of their regions. Marion Local is guaranteed a spot in the playoffs, and Coldwater is about 99 percent of the way there. Delphos St. John's, Minster, Versailles and Anna all have a chance to squeak into the postseason but all four need to win their last three games to do so. Since most of these teams play at least one of the others before the season is over, it is safe to assume that only one, at the most, of those four teams will reach the playoffs.
The list of games in the WBL this week isn't eye-popping but Celina (6-1) will need to make sure it doesn't stumble against Lima Shawnee (2-5) while Elida (4-3) is in a similar position against Ottawa-Glandorf (3-4).
The MAC has two big games. Coldwater (6-1) matches up against undefeated Marion Local to likely determine the MAC champion, but the result will not have much effect on either teams' playoff hopes. The loser of Delphos St. John's at Versailles (both 3-4) will be out of postseason contention.
Team - Ranking (Computer Points)
Wapakoneta - 1st (16.00)
Celina - 7th (10.44)
Kenton Ridge - 8th (10.03)
New Richmond - 9th (9.49)
Trotwood-Madison - 10th (7.39)
St. Marys - 25th (0.00)
Only 13 teams still remain in playoff contention in this region and only the top 10 have a realistic chance at the postseason. Wapakoneta (6-1) used its win over Ottawa-Glandorf to maintain its hold on the top position and ahead of three undefeated teams.
Celina's last two games against St. Marys and Van Wert have been great for the Bulldogs' won-loss record. However, they have not been so good for their computer points as they dropped two more places in the standings this week. If Celina wins its last three games (including a week nine matchup against Kenton) the Bulldogs will be safely in the playoffs and may even host a first-round game. If the Bulldogs only win next week against Lima Shawnee and in week 10 against Elida, then the eighth and final playoff spot seems most likely.
Columbia - 1st (12.55)
Coldwater - 3rd (11.63)
Doylestown Chippewa - 8th (9.98)
Creston Norwayne - 9th (8.54)
Ottawa-Glandorf - 21st (3.14)
Van Wert - 26th (0.00)
Coldwater remains in third place after defeating Anna (2-5) as the Cavaliers are still benefitting from wins over Bishop Hartley, Versailles, Delphos St. John's and Minster. A win against Marion Local should enable the Cavaliers to start printing tickets for a home playoff game, while a loss means Coldwater will likely have to wait another week before it can clinch a playoff spot.
Ottawa-Glandorf is now officially out of playoff contention.
West Liberty-Salem - 8th (7.46)
Minster - 13th (4.49)
Anna - 14th (4.40)
Parkway - 16th (3.72)
Versailles - 17th (3.51)
St. Henry - 23rd (0.57)
New Bremen - 24th (0.00)
Minster takes over as the best of the six MAC squads in this region, mostly thanks to its four wins against other MAC teams in the region. However, the top eight teams are separating themselves from the rest of the region. No matter what happens, none of the MAC teams will be able to crack the top eight after this week's games.
Parkway, St. Henry and New Bremen are now officially out of contention. Minster, Anna and Versailles all need to win their final three games to keep their playoff hopes alive, and even in that case only Minster would be likely to break into the top eight teams.
Triad - 1st (14.74)
Marion Local - 2nd (12.69)
Portsmouth Notre Dame - 8th (6.86)
Riverview East Academy - 9th (4.39)
Fort Recovery - 15th (2.62)
Undefeated Marion Local fell to second as its win over St. Henry (1-6) did not allow the Flyers to keep pace with Triad. Although their postseason invitation is already secure, getting the top seed in the playoffs will probably require a win over Coldwater this week. Even with a loss, a home playoff game is likely for the Flyers.
Fort Recovery's loss to Delphos St. John's officially ended any hopes the Indians had for a playoff invitation.
Other Regions of Interest:
Region 8 still has only eight teams with winning records. Defiance (4-3) needed its comeback victory over winless St. Marys to stay in seventh place in the rankings and may sneak into the playoffs with wins over winless Van Wert and Lima Shawnee. Elida probably needs to win its final three games, including a week 10 game against Celina.
Kenton (7-0) fell a spot to third in Region 12, but the Wildcats are looking good to hold onto a top-four spot even if they lose one game (such as the big week nine matchup against Celina).
Delphos St. John's moved up one spot to 11th in region 22 this week. The Blue Jays will need to win their last three games, starting with a road game against Versailles this week.