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High School Football: With two weeks remaining, conference title races heating up


With two weeks remaining in the regular season, several conference title races across the area are still very much up in the air.

»RELATED: Week 9 Schedule

»RELATED: This week’s state poll

»RELATED: ‘No quit’ in Catholic Central

Here’s a look at how the conference races are shaping up across Clark and Champaign counties heading into Week 9:

GWOC National East: Springfield’s two most important games of the season will come with both the division title and a playoff berth on the line.

The Wildcats are 7-1 and 2-0 GWOC National East Division race. Springfield can clinch at least a share of its first conference title since 2010 with a victory over Wayne (6-2, 3-0) on Friday. A loss means Wayne will win the division title outright.

The Wildcats can win it outright with a victory over Fairmont (6-2, 1-1) in Week 10. The Firebirds lost to Wayne 49-44 last week. If Fairmont can earn back-to-back wins over Centerville and Springfield, the division would end in a three-way tie.

All three teams remain in hunt for a Division I, Region 3 playoff berth — Springfield is fourth, followed by Fairmont (seventh) and Wayne (eighth).

Springfield will have home-field advantage as both of its final two games will be played at Evans Stadium.

Ohio Heritage Conference North Division: Arguably one of the toughest small school divisions in the area, the OHC North touts five teams with winning records — Mechanicsburg (7-1, 2-1), West Jefferson (6-2, 2-1), West Liberty-Salem (6-2, 2-1), Fairbanks (5-3, 2-1) and Triad (5-3, 1-2).

Essentially, all four teams atop the division control their own destiny to earn a share of the championship.

Mechanicsburg is on the road for both of its final two games. The Indians travel to Northeastern (1-7, 0-3) this week, then Fairbanks in Week 10.

West Liberty-Salem travels to West Jefferson this week before hosting Northeastern in Week 10.

Triad must win its final two games and get some help to earn a share of the title. The Cardinals host Fairbanks and travel to West Jefferson in Week 10.

OHC South Division: Greeneview can clinch its second straight division title with a win against Catholic Central (0-8, 0-3) at 7 p.m. on Thursday at Don Nock Field. 

The Rams have yet to lose an OHC division game since the conference realigned last season. With back-to-back wins against Central and Madison Plains, the Rams can finish a perfect 5-0 in the division for the season straight season.

Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Trail Division: Bellefontaine beat Jonathan Alder 22-13 last week to earn a least a share of its third straight division title. The Chieftains control their own destiny and can win the title outright with a victory over Shawnee (4-4, 0-2) on Friday.

While the Braves have been eliminated from contention, a victory over the Chieftains can open the door for either Tecumseh (5-3, 1-1) or Alder (5-3, 1-1) to earn a share of the title.

The Arrows travel to Jonathan Alder on Friday. If Shawnee can pull off the upset, the winner will have a chance to pull even with Bellefontaine in its last game of the season.

Tecumseh hosts Kenton Ridge (5-3, 1-2) — which has also been eliminated from contention — and the Pioneers travel to Shawnee in Week 10.

CBC Mad River Division: Indian Lake (3-5, 3-0) clinched at least a share of its fourth straight division title with an 8-7 victory over Northwestern (5-3, 2-1) last Friday.

But all is not lost for the Warriors or Urbana (3-5, 1-1).

With an Urbana win next week and a Northwestern victory at Graham in Week 10, the Warriors can still earn their first conference title since 1967.

With back-to-back home wins over Indian Lake and Benjamin Logan, Urbana can also clinch a share of the division title. The Hillclimbers are hitting their stride this season, beating Shawnee 47-12 and Graham 45-6 in back-to-back weeks.

NOTES

Playoff Sunday: The Ohio High School Athletic Association playoff pairings will be released on Sunday, Oct. 28. The top eight teams in each region advance to the playoffs; the top four teams will all host regional quarterfinal playoff games.

Playoff games for Divisions I, II, III and VI will all be played on Friday night, while D-IV, V and VII will be played on Saturday night.

All football state championship games will be played at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton.

Century mark: Greeneview’s Clay Payton (109) and Southeastern’s Hayden McKee (100) have eclipsed 100 tackles this season. Tecumseh’s A.J. Betleyoun has 99 tackles for the Arrows.



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