(November 2, 2017)
The regular season for AHSAA teams comes to an end this week.
For a select few, the AISA playoffs open at the same time.
Three teams out of the River Region are looking for an AISA state title and begin their quest this week. Lowndes Academy goes after the Class A title while Macon East and Autauga Academy are after a Class AA championship.
Autauga Academy is the odds-on favorite to win the title for a second-straight year and should breeze through its first game against Kingwood. Macon East has enjoyed a great season and looks to advance against Clarke-Prep.
In AHSAA, Sidney Lanier and Prattville meet with the Poets looking to the post season. Also, Alabama Christian faces Montgomery Academy but looking ahead to the playoffs a week later.
Several teams have the week off but are watching the scoreboard due to tiebreakers. Wetumpka needs one of its previous opponents to win Friday in order to wrap up first place in the region.
Week 10-plus 1
Clarke Prep at Macon East
What: AISA Class AA 1st round
When: Friday at Knights Field
2017 Records: Clarke Prep 3-7 (1-3 4th); Macon East 9-1 (8-0 1st)
Last week: Clarke Prep def. Wilcox Aca, 47-14; Macon East def. Southern Aca, 38-14
Last meeting: 2005 - Clarke Prep, 21-18
Series record: Clarke Prep leads, 2-0
Keys: Macon East finished on an eight-game winning streak, the first time that has happened since 2001.
Outlook: The Knights are enjoying their best season since 2009 when they finished 8-3 but they haven’t gotten past the first round since 2007. This should be different. The defense is doing the job giving up just 9.6 points per game. Quarterback Tucker Nevin (a transfer from Park Crossing) continues to be a solid part of the offense, which averages better than 33 points per game. The Gators did finish the season on a two-game winning streak but that was against weak opponents. The Knights should advance.
Preddiction: M-E 31, Clark Prep 13
Lowndes Academy at Patrician
What: AISA Class A 1st round
When: Friday at Hannah-Hesselman Field, Butler
2017 Records: Lowndes 5-4 (1-3 4th); Patrician 6-4 (5-0 1st)
Last week: Patrician, 33-0; Lowndes Aca def. Coosa Valley, 42-14
Last meeting: Oct. 13 - Lowndes, 7-0
Series record: Patrician leads, 8-2
Key stat: Lowndes finished the regular season with a 346-yard performance. In the previous meeting, Lowndes held Patrician to just 38 yards of total offense.
Outlook: This one is a head scratcher for a number of reasons. First, it’s obvious Patrician played a much easier schedule and in a much easier region. When the two teams met in October, Lowndes proved to be too much and despite that, finished fourth in the region. Is there any reason to expect a different outcome this time? No. Lowndes is the better team and advances to the semifinals.
Preddiction: Lowndes 16, Patrician 7
Montgomery Academy at Alabama Christian
What: Non Region game
When: Thursday at Norton Field
2017 Records: MA 8-1 (3A/R3 champs); ACA 7-2 (4A/R2 3rd)
Last week: Catholic def. ACA, 19-8; MA def. Prattville Christian, 26-3
Last year’s meeting: MA, 26-13
Series record: MA leads, 32-4
Key stat: ACA has beaten MA twice since the turn of the Century, coming back-to-back years 2008-09.
Outlook: Two good teams that can use a warm up heading into the playoffs. MA won its first region title under Gary Nelson and ACA enjoyed its best season since 1988. ACA coach Nate Sanford expects to get his quarterback, Reece Solar, back at some point - maybe next week. It’s all about keeping everybody healthy but in ACA’s case, there is the momentum factor. No one expects either team to treat this like an exhibition but ACA may want it a little more and find a way to earn a win.
Preddiction: ACA 23, MA 20
Also this week…
Sidney Lanier at Prattville: How times have changed… The Poets use this as a tune up for the playoffs. Lions just want to end the season on a high note. Just like the 80s… Lanier, 29-13.
Montgomery Catholic at Marbury: Two playoff teams but the seasons for these two have been far different. Knights win big. Catholic, 34-10.
Kingwood at Autauga Aca (Class AA 1st round): Generals begin their course to state championship. AA, 49-8
Other games: Holtville over Beulah, 21-10; Stanhope Elmore over Selma, 34-13; Billingsley over Dallas Co, 23-14; R.C. Hatch over Autaugaville, 19-13.
OPEN DATE: Carver, Jeff Davis, R.E. Lee, Park Crossing, Wetumpka, St. James, Trinity (Season complete), Elmore County (season complete), Tallassee (Note: AISA regular season over)
Last week: 19-1 Season: 172-27 (.864)