Area teams gearing up for football playoffs

It’s been just two seasons since Shawnee rolled into the Division III high school football state title game.

The Braves and six other area teams will take their best shots at matching that run today and Saturday during the first round of the playoffs.

Shawnee posted a 14-1 record in 2011, losing only 21-14 to Youngstown Cardinal Mooney in the title game. Last season the Braves bounced Alter in the first round then fell 36-35 to Athens in a shootout.

This season Shawnee (9-1) landed a No. 6 seed in the loaded D-III, Region 10 field. That was enough to secure another postseason spot, but at Wapakoneta (9-1) today. Shawnee’s only setback was a 21-7 Week 10 loss at unbeaten Tippecanoe (10-0). The win earned the Red Devils the No. 1 D-III, Region 10 seed and secured a CBC Kenton Trail title.

Divisions II, III, IV and VI will play at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays. Divisions I, V and VII will play at 7 p.m. on Saturdays.

Joining Shawnee in the playoffs are Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Trail Division rival Kenton Ridge (D-III), Urbana (D-IV), West Liberty-Salem (D-VI), Mechanicsburg (D-VI), Cedarville (D-VII) and Triad (D-VII).

  • Kenton Ridge (7-3) opens at Tipp today. The Cougars are on a two-game losing skid following consecutive losses to Tipp in the regular season and Tecumseh.
  • Urbana (10-0) will play at Cincinnati McNicholas (8-2) in a rescheduled 1:30 p.m. game on Saturday. The Hillclimbers are the only unbeaten Region 14 team but like Shawnee also could do no better than a No. 6 seed. Also in the region is defending D-IV state champ Clinton-Massie.
  • WL-Salem (8-2) didn’t skip a playoff beat with first-year head coach Dan McGill. The Tigers drew a D-VI, Region 22 road game at Williamsburg (7-3). Last season WL-Salem was bounced in the second round by eventual D-V state champ Coldwater.
  • Mechanicsburg (8-2) will host National Trail (8-20 in another D-VI, Region 22 game. It’ll be the first postseason game in program history for Trail, a Cross County Conference member.
  • Cedarville (7-3) drew top-seeded Triad (10-0) in a D-VII, Region 26 Ohio Heritage Conference rematch. The Cardinals won their Week 7 matchup 21-7.

The playoffs shift to neutral sites the next four weeks. Brackets are set and the Ohio High School Athletic Association will announce sites on Sunday.

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