Last week: 6-1
We’ve made it. The final week of the high school football regular season is here.
Where did the time go? Can we go back to Week 1? No? Okay.
Sadly, with the end of the regular season comes the end of Pick ‘Em. Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because I picked 74 percent of games correctly leading up to Week 11.
There are not too many playoff scenarios that are left to play out. Most teams are eliminated by now and a few have virtually “punched their tickets.” That said, there is one game that is do-or-die for one of our teams.
White House Heritage at Montgomery Central (Friday at 7 p.m.)
This is it.
If the Indians win, they’re in. If they don’t, the Patriots are in. It’s as simple as that. This is a pseudo-playoff game.
Montgomery Central is coming off their second – and worst – loss of the season. If they can rally together and come out playing angry on Friday, they should have no trouble pushing past the revived White House Heritage team. They are also aided by home field advantage, as the Indians have not lost a game at home yet this season.
Also of note: if MCHS wins, they will host a playoff game as Springfield and Creek Wood – who are both 4-1 with losses to the Indians – face off on Friday. Heritage does not have that same advantage, arguably giving Montgomery Central even more motivation.
Prediction: Montgomery Central 27, White House Heritage 23
West Creek at Clarksville (Friday at 7 p.m.)
Congratulations Clarksville, you’re in!
The Wildcats will be a three seed no matter what happens on Friday, but their game still has implications. If they beat the West Creek Coyotes, then Kenwood gets the fourth spot in the region. However, if the Coyotes win this game and Dyer County beats Kenwood, then West Creek is in.
Once more, motivation becomes a huge piece of this puzzle. Clarksville has nothing but pride to play for – not that they won’t show up – while the Coyotes are playing for their lives. There’s no question who will want this one more.
West Creek has had a tough go of things in the last two weeks, being walloped by the likes of Henry County and Dyer County by 46 and 53 points, respectively. This is a team that is down in the dumps right now after an impressive start to the season. There would be no better way for the Coyotes to cap off their tumultuous season.
Sadly, I just don’t see it happening.
Prediction: Clarksville 31, West Creek 14
Henry County at Northwest (Friday at 7 p.m.)
I hate to say this, but there’s pretty much nothing to see here unless you have ties to either team.
Henry County has locked up the top seed. Northwest is out. The only bearing this game has on the final standings is whether the Vikings will finish in last place or not.
Prediction: Henry County 50, Northwest 7
University School of Jackson at Clarksville Academy (Friday at 7 p.m.)
As far as we know, there are two scenarios in which the Cougars get in. Obviously, they both start with them beating the Bruins on Friday night.
Here are the avenues to Clarksville Academy getting in without needing a tiebreaker. Ready?
Clarksville Academy, Columbia Academy, Trinity Christian and Davidson Academy win.
Clarksville Academy, Fayette Academy, Trinity Christian and Davidson Academy win.
Those are the only two out of 10 unique scenarios that get the Cougars in without fail. Basically, they need to win and get a LOT of help.
Let’s start with what they can control: the impending home matchup with USJ. I don’t see a win happening. The Bruins are one of the top teams in the conference, and they didn’t come within less than 20 points of the other schools in the top three. I’m sorry to do this, Cougars.
Prediction: University School of Jackson 38, Clarksville Academy 20
Kenwood at Dyer County (Friday at 7 p.m.)
Kenwood is looking relatively safe at the moment, as they only way they do not get in is if they lose and West Creek wins…
But maybe they’re not as safe as it seems. The Knights are on a four-game skid with a pair of 50-plus point losses in that span. The Choctaws are one of the top teams in this region and should handle Kenwood as long as the Knights don’t pull off an incredible turnaround to make an unforeseen upset.
Time to root for Clarksville, Kenwood fans.
Prediction: Dyer County 48, Kenwood 6
Northeast at Antioch (Friday at 7 p.m.)
These Eagles, man. This team started 0-5 and has since gone 2-2 with their only losses coming to Henry County and Dyer County, and they put up a fight in both.
Antioch should be the worst team Northeast will have seen this year. With the way they have been playing, they should have no issue winning this game. They’re out of the playoffs, but this end-of-season softball should be a nice way for the Eagles to cap off the reclamation project.
Prediction: Northeast 42, Antioch 12
Lebanon at Rossview (Friday at 7 p.m.)
Our last game features another win-or-go-home scenario. Throw in seeding and things become a bit more difficult.
If Rossview wins this game, they’ll slot in as the fourth seed. Simple as that.
However, if Lebanon wins, they could finish second, third or fourth depending on how the rest of the region plays out.
But let’s not get into that too much. Let’s just look at this one.
The Hawks are hosting this one – for whatever that’s worth. They were just blown out at home by Hendersonville, a team Lebanon beat.
Rossview absolutely has a chance here (though I thought that last week, too), but I would not bet on them emerging.
Prediction: Lebanon 28, Rossview 17