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Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

Coldwater the first to clinch spot in playoffs

By Bruce Monnin
Only two weeks remain in the high school football regular season. The first area team has clinched a playoff spot, and later this week we will be able to make projections as to who is likely to make the playoffs and who is not.
The Western Buckeye League still has five teams in serious playoff contention, though it is most likely the conference will end up with either two or three playoff teams. The WBL has a history of beating each other up where they sometimes knock each other out of the playoffs, but this week's Lima Shawnee win over St. Marys may actually help the league get an extra playoff berth since the Roughriders are still looking very secure for the playoffs.
On the Midwest Athletic Conference side, Coldwater is the team to have clinched a playoff berth. There will probably be at least two of Anna, Marion Local and St. Henry in the playoffs from region 20, if not all three. Delphos St. John's also looks very good for a playoff game, and Minster is still in the top eight in its region for now.
Here is a listing of how all the MAC and WBL teams stand in the computer rankings after the eighth week, as well as a few other teams they are competing against for one of the highly sought after playoff berths. The computer points for the five regions involving Mercer, Auglaize and Shelby county teams can be accessed at www.nktelco.net/bdmonnin/football.htm

Team - Ranking (Computer Points)
Region 6:
Powell Olentangy Liberty - 8th (14.44)
Wapakoneta - 18th (6.89)
Celina - 27th (2.04)
Wapakoneta joins Celina this week as both WBL teams in this region are now officially eliminated from the playoff hunt.

Region 10:
St. Marys - 1st (17.74)
Clyde - 4th (14.83)
Tipp City Tippecanoe - 5th (14.60)
Defiance - 6th (14.50)
Urbana - 8th (12.70)
Tiffin Columbian - 9th (12.15)
Lima Shawnee - 10th (11.03)
Kenton - 14th (9.54)
Van Wert - 25th (3.68)
Elida - 29th (0.00)
Despite a loss to Lima Shawnee, St. Marys remains atop the region 10 standings. A win over Kenton should still give the Roughriders home field advantage for their first playoff game.
Defiance actually dropped one position with its win over 0-8 Elida. With both their remaining opponents currently 2-6, the Bulldogs are not guaranteed a playoff berth even if they win both games.
Lima Shawnee's big win over St. Marys gets the Indians back into contention. Both Shawnee and Kenton have a chance of sneaking into one of the last playoff spots if they win out.

Region 14:
Ottawa-Glandorf - 7th (9.58)
Bucyrus - 9th (8.05)
Lima Bath - 23rd (1.81)
Ottawa-Glandorf dropped two spots after defeating Van Wert this week, and a win over 2-6 Celina would not help too much this week. It is starting to look like the week 10 matchup with Lima Shawnee may be for a playoff spot for the winner and the end of the season for the loser.

Region 16:
Coldwater - 1st (22.66)
Dayton Oakwood - 5th (14.18)
Cin. North College Hill - 8th (9.91)
Coldwater remains far ahead of the rest of the region, and if every possible result the rest of the year went against Coldwater, the Cavs would still finish at least fifth. So, Cavalier fans can be fairly secure in the knowledge they won't have to buy gas for a first round playoff road trip.
It appears a Cincinnati area team may be making the trip north, as Wyoming, North College Hill and Hamilton Badin are currently seventh, eighth and ninth in the region.

Region 20:
Cin. Hills Christian Academy - 1st (16.71)
Anna - 2nd (14.65)
West Jefferson - 3rd (13.07)
West Liberty-Salem - 4th (12.84)
Waynesville - 5th (12.04)
Marion Local - 6th (11.89)
Miami East - 7th (10.11)
North Lewisburg Triad - 8th (9.79)
St. Henry - 9th (9.66)
East Clinton - 10th (9.54)
Parkway - 20th (3.81)
Versailles - 22nd (3.39)
Anna's win over New Bremen, as well as wins by Lehman and Waynesfield, keep the Rockets in second place, looking good for a playoff spot and hoping to host a first-round game, which may require a win over Marion Local in week 10.
Marion Local lost one spot even after beating Versailles and after Harvest Prep won its fourth (and probably last) game of the season. Elida's 0-8 season is hurting the Flyers and makes them borderline for the playoffs unless they beat Anna in week 10.
St. Henry climbs one spot to ninth after beating Fort Recovery and having Marion Pleasant and Kenton Ridge also win. Big points games remaining against Delphos St. John's and Minster means the Redskins are in the playoffs at 7-3 with two more wins.
Despite beating Minster, Parkway joins Versailles as the second MAC team mathematically eliminated from the playoffs.

Region 22:
Delphos St. John's - 4th (10.68)
New Washington Buckeye Central - 9th (5.65)
The loss to Coldwater drops Delphos St. John's one place in the standings, but the Blue Jays still have almost double the points of the top team currently not in the top eight, so they have no playoff worries yet.

Region 24:
Minster - 7th (8.20)
Ansonia - 8th (7.78)
Waynesfield-Goshen - 9th (6.83)
Fort Recovery - 15th (5.08)
New Bremen - 18th (4.28)
Minster's loss to Parkway cost the Wildcats two spots in the standings, with the eighth- and ninth-place teams in the standings close behind. The Wildcats will need to beat either Coldwater or St. Henry to ensure a playoff spot.
Fort Recovery holds its position at 15th in the standings despite losing this weekend. New Bremen's loss dropped the Cardinals two places to 18th.
Additional online story on this date
COLDWATER - The bumpy ground behind the old Smith School isn't as inviting these days to the students who once slung acorns and played Fox and Goose on the 'ole playground. [More]
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