It’s times like these I wish I were a beaver so I could break up this logjam.
That’s right party people, it’s that time of the year to break down all those wacky playoff scenarios. With just one game remaining in the regular season, here’s a look at what needs to happen in your region for your team.
Statesboro’s win at Brunswick last Friday was huge. But they’re not out of the woods yet. In fact, six teams in Region 3-AAAA are still trying to find their way into the postseason.
We’ll start with the bottom, where Brunswick and Effingham are looking up at the rest of the pack. The two teams meet this Friday and the loser will go home with a 5-4 region record. Simple enough.
The winner of that game will likely be tied with Glynn Academy, who faces last place Richmond Academy to close out the season.
Square in the middle is Evans with a 6-2 record. They should move to 7-2 with a win over bottom dweller Wayne County on Friday. Now things get complicated.
The biggest game of the week will be played at Womack Field. A Ware County win over the underdog Blue Devils means Ware is the region champs. Thus, Ware would be No. 1 and Evans No. 2.
Statesboro would fall to 6-3, and could potentially be tied with Glynn Academy and the winner of Brunswick and Effingham County. The Devils would then hope for a Brunswick win, holding a 2-0 record against both teams from Glynn County. Brunswick beat Glynn County during the regular season.
So all that is if Statesboro loses. How about a win?
A victory for SHS will most likely create a three-way tie for first, with SHS, GA, and Evans finishing at 7-2. Statesboro beat Ware, Ware beat Evans and Evans beat Statesboro. Ware would have a 7-3 overall record while SHS and Evans would finish 8-2, for what that’s worth.
The GHSA tie-break rule states that if there is a tie between three teams and playoff spots for all three teams, “the region” decides the tie-breaker. I’m not “the region,” so I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Check Saturday’s paper.
The four teams that survive out of 3-AAAA will face Bainbridge, Thomas County-Central, Americus-Sumter or Lee County.
Region 3-AA isn’t as complicated, although things could get a little sticky.
Jefferson County and Swainsboro are tied for first place, and both should win on Friday, giving Swainsboro the tiebreaker in the head-to-head.
Screven County looks to be in good standing for a three-seed. Tied with Laney, both teams are favored to win this Friday and the Gamecocks hold the head-to-head tiebreaker. They’d both finish with a 5-2 region record, a game behind Jefferson County (6-1) and Swainsboro (6-1).
Those scenarios should hold true with wins. But losses would wreak havoc amongst the ranks, especially if Westside were to upset Jefferson on Friday and Screven and Laney were to lose. Westside is out no matter what, but seedings would be become fuzzy if the second through fourth-place teams lay eggs Friday night.
The four teams that escape out of 3-AA will face Thomasville, Early County, Fitzgerald, Cook County, Randolph-Clay or Brooks County.
Metter and Southeast Bulloch will look towards 2008.
What we do know in 3-A is that the top three are set.
Emanuel County Institute will face Savannah Country Day Friday in Savannah for the region title. Done and done.
Bryan County has secured its second straight trip to the postseason and will be the No. 3 seed.
Then we come to Claxton. The Tigers (2-4) are as good as in with the final week of the season off.
The winner of the Jenkins County-Portal game will move into a tie with CHS, but the Tigers have beaten both those squads so they win the tie-breaker. The Eagles and Panthers will have to wait until next year.
The anomaly is Calvary Day. The Cavs need a win at Bryan County to improve to 2-4. That would create a three-way tie with Claxton and the winner of the JCHS-PHS game. Frankly, I’m not quite sure what would happen in this instance, although I don’t think it’d favor the Tigers.
I would suspect Claxton to be wearing red and white come Friday night.
Claxton will likely have to travel to Clinch County for round one, while the other three teams will meet Miller County, Atkinson County, Calhoun County, Seminole County, Terrell County or Lanier County.