By David Fong
MIAMI COUNTY — Well, that went quickly.
For at least half of the local high school football teams, the season will, incredibly, come to an end this week. Every year, it seems like the fastest 10 weeks of the year take place between Week 1 and Week 10 of the high school football season. While it appears as though several teams are in prime position to move on to the playoffs, for most of the teams in the area, it all ends this week.
Before we shed any tears, however, let’s take a look at the Week 10 match-ups:
Troy Christian (7-2) at Crestline (4-5)
What a difference 24 hours made for the Troy Christian football team last weekend. Last Friday, it initially appeared the Eagles’ playoff hopes were over following a 48-0 loss to Lima Central Catholic. Troy Christian got some help throughout the region, however, and now it looks as though Troy Christian has a slightly better than 50-50 chance of making the playoffs with a win over Crestline and some more help from other teams around the state. First thing’s first, though … the Eagles must win against Crestline this week.
Milton-Union (5-4, 4-1) at Carlisle (0-9, 0-5)
Milton-Union has been eliminated from the Division V playoff race, but the Bulldogs can still win a share of the Southwestern Buckeye League Buckeye Division title. If Milton defeats Carlisle and Waynesville knocks off Middletown Madison, then Milton, Waynesville and Madison all would share a piece of of the SWBL Buckeye title.
National Trail (4-5, 2-5) at Covington (6-3, 6-1)
Covington may be the best comeback story of the season. After an 0-3 start, it looked as if the Buccaneers’ chances of accomplishing much of anything this season were done. Since then, however, Covington has won six games in a row and put itself in the thick of the playoff race. With a win, the Buccaneers’ chances of making the playoffs are 99 percent. A win and a Tri-County North upset of Fort Loramie also gets Covington a share of the Cross County Conference title.
Twin Valley South (4-5, 3-4) at Miami East (7-2, 5-2)
Miami East has been in a “must-win” position for several weeks now — and has responded every time. Should Miami East defeat Twin Valley South Friday, it almost certainly would be in the Division V playoffs. With a loss, the Vikings’ chances of making it to the postseason for the seventh year in a row dips below 50 percent. A win puts East’s playoff chances at 99 percent, according to the website www.fantastic50.net.
Butler (6-3, 3-1) at Tippecanoe (4-5, 1-3)
After dropping three of its last four games, Tippecanoe is out of the playoff hunt and the race for the Greater Western Ohio Conference North Division title. Still, though, the Red Devils have a chance to salvage a .500 season with a win over Butler.
Mississinawa Valley (4-5, 3-4) at Bethel (5-4, 3-4)
With a win over Mississinawa Valley, Bethel can post a winning season for the third year in a row, something that has not happened since 2005-07. That’s what the Bees are playing for going into their final week of the season.
Riverside (6-3, 5-1) at Lehman (6-3, 5-1)
Lehman already has clinched a playoff spot going into the final week of the regular season — the only area team other than Troy to do so. Still, though, the Cavaliers have plenty to play for. A win against Riverside gives the Cavaliers the Northwest Central Conference title.
Bradford (0-9, 0-7) at Ansonia (7-2, 6-1)
It’s been a tough season for Bradford, which hasn’t posted a win since the eighth week of the 2016 season. Still, though, Bradford’s players haven’t quit and have played hard in every game this season.
Contact David Fong at email@example.com; follow him on Twitter @thefong