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Crunch time for playoff hopes

Fandy.com Staff • Oct 13, 2010 at 1:22 AM

With three weeks left in the regular season, it's going to come down to the wire for several area teams with hopes of qualifying for the state football playoffs, which begin Nov. 5-6.

After Tuesday's weekly computer points were released by the Ohio High School Athletic Association, four teams find themselves in the Top 8 of their respective region while four others are just on the outside looking in.

In Division II, Sandusky (4-3) fell one spot in Region 6 from 10th to 11th with 8.2714 points after a 49-14 loss to Findlay. The Blue Streaks still hold their fate in their own hands, as wins over Marion Harding, Napoleon and Fremont Ross are likely enough to crack the top eight.

However, the Streaks cannot lose again in order to keep any playoff hopes alive.

Sandusky, which hasn't made the playoffs since 1990, could also receive a big boost from Clear Fork (6-1) the next two weeks. The Colts play host to Division II Ashland (6-1) and travel Division IV Orrville (5-2). Sandusky beat Clear Fork, the top team in Region 14 in Division IV, 39-22 in Week 1.

In Division III, the Clyde Fliers and Oak Harbor Rockets are virtual locks for the playoffs in second and third place, respectively. Clyde has 14.2000 points while Oak Harbor has 12.9000 points. Should the Fliers beat Perkins (1-6) on Friday and the Rockets beat Huron (5-2), it sets up a huge Sandusky Bay Conference showdown between the two in Clyde on Oct. 22.

On top of being alone in first place with a week to go, the winner likely would clinch a first-round home game.

In Division IV, two teams are on the cusp in Region 14 but will need some help.

The Edison Chargers (4-3) sit just on the outside looking in at 9th with 7.2429 points, which is just .4000 points behind eighth place Galion. However, because of the uncertain logjam in the region from teams ranked 7-14, Edison more than likely needs to win it's remaining three games against Margaretta (3-4), St. Mary Central Catholic (1-6) and Clyde (7-0).

Meanwhile, Huron sits in 11th with 6.8571 points. The Tigers have the opportunity to make up huge ground this week with a win over the Division III Rockets, but are also facing a win-out scenario in their final three games with Oak Harbor, Margaretta and Port Clinton.

In Division V, the Western Reserve Roughriders (7-0) were already a virtual lock for the playoffs, but after a win over St. Paul last Friday, it's all but certain history will be made as Western should host it's first-ever home playoff game on Nov. 6.

The 'Riders continue to sit atop Region 18 with 14.2071 points. With the top four teams in each region hosting in the first round, Western finds themselves 3.3000 points ahead of fourth place Defiance Tinora. Western can complete the coronation with a win at Crestview (4-3) this week while closing out with New London (1-6) and Mapleton (0-7).

In Division VI, the stakes for the annual St. Paul-Monroeville rivalry in Week 10 have likely increased a great deal.

While neither team may play for a Firelands Conference title in three weeks, it looks like the winner will qualify for the playoffs in Region 21 and the loser will finish ninth and just miss out.

Currently, the Eagles (5-2) are in eighth place with 7.9071 points while the Flyers (5-2) are ninth with 7.6643 points.

With Monroeville playing Mapleton and South Central (2-5) the next two weeks while St. Paul takes on New London and Plymouth, it is likely both teams will meet Oct. 30 in Monroeville with matching 7-2 records.

Depending on outcomes around the region, the winner of the game could shoot up as high as fifth place in the region, while the loser would need a lot of help.

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