Football playoff picture expecting photo finishPublished 1:28am Wednesday, October 23, 2013
It looks like a photo finish.
The final two weeks of the Ohio High School Athletic Association football season could prove to be one of the most unpredictable finishes in years.
Five teams in Region 17 of Division V have clinched playoff spots and the Fairland Dragons can qualify by winning their final two games against Rock Hill and River Valley.
The Dragons (5-3) are heavy favorites in both games. However, the Dragons are not getting many second level points and could drop a spot.
However, the rest of the region is wide open.
Currently, Westfall is seventh, South Point eighth, Portsmouth West ninth, Southeastern 10th, Adena 11th and Ironton 12th.
Although Ironton is just 2-6, the Fighting Tigers still have a chance to qualify for the postseason because the region lacks teams with good records or strong schedules.
Ironton’s final two games are against Oak Hill (7-1) and Raceland, Ky. (6-2). Oak Hill has 28.5 points on its first level that would go on Ironton’s second level.
Raceland is currently worth 24 points on its second level and the Rams are favorites this week against Paintsville. Raceland is worth 4.0 on the first level.
Ironton’s two wins are over Amanda-Clearcreek and Russell, Ky. The Aces are in a toss-up game with Logan Elm this week and underdogs their final game against Circleville. Russell should beat East Carter this week but the Red Devils will be underdogs against Pikeville.
The Fighting Tigers could gross at least 60 points on the second level over the final two games.
South Point (6-2) is currently eighth in the region but could win its final two games and not qualify if Ironton wins out. The Pointers faces 1-7 River Valley Friday and won’t get many second level points from the rest of their opponents.
The Pointers final game is at Coal Grove (3-5).
Westfall is 4-4 and sits at No. 7 in the region. The Mustangs finish with Zane Trace and Adena and both games could go either way. In fact, Westfall is probably a slight underdog in both games.
Portsmouth West (4-4) should beat Northwest this week but the Senators close with Wheelersburg, currently 8-0 and second in Region 17.
Shifting to Division VII, the Symmes Valley Vikings (5-3) are currently eighth in Region 25 and are looking at a must-win Friday against Portsmouth Notre Dame.
The Vikings final game is at winless Buffalo, W.Va.
The game appears to be a toss-up. Notre Dame (6-2) is seventh in Region 26 and the Titans are also in a must-win situation in order to make the playoffs.