Playoff field features 8 local teams in 6 games
It’s the time of the year every hardcore foootball fan has been waiting for. The District 1 playoffs are here and the area is well represented in both the 6A and 5A bracket. Here is what the two brackets look like and an early view of the games.
In 6A, Coatesville is the No. 4 Team in the 16-team bracket and will host the No. 13 Abington. The Ghosts have some athletes, but they were just smashed by North Penn in the regular season finale. A tough second-round game against Ridley could await the Red Raiders if form holds.
The other 6A entrant is Downingtown East, and the sixth-seeded Cougars face No. 11 Souderton. Souderton is 6-4 on the year and the Indians will likely not be able to stand up to the Cougars’ front wall. If Downingtown East wins, a likely second-round trip awaits at high flying Perkiomen Valley against superb quarterback Steven Sturm, a very daunting task.
The 5A bracket features some familiar Ches-Mont League games, including the highest local seed — Ches-Mont American Divsion champion Unionville, seeded sixth — hosts No.
11 West Chester East. This game looks like a toss up because the Vikings have played the tougher side of the Ches-Mont, and barely lost to Downingtown West and West Chester Henderson. The winner of this game will likley face a tough test at No. 3 Marple Newtown.
Another all-Ches-Mont matchup comes when No. 10 West Chester Rustin, which has won five of its last six games, visits No. 7 Bishop Shanahan. The Eagles finished the regular season 7-3 and only lost to Coatesville, Downingtown East, and Downingtown
West. Both teams lost to Coatesville, but Bishop Shanahan was in the Coatesville game until the second half, while Rustin was buried after the first quarter.
In another Ches-Mont clash, fifth-seeded West Chester Henderson hosts No. 12 Sun Valley. Henderson has gone back to the power running game, and junior C.J. Preston has thrived in the feature back role. The Warriors should adavnce here to likely face Upper Dublin on the Cardinals’ home field.
The last area team is No. 8 Great Valley, which will host No. 9 Glen Mills in a rematch of a Week 3 game that saw the Bulls roll to a 35-20 win. The winner here likely gets top-seeded Springfield on the road, so whichever team wins Friday should enjoy the victory, because it might be their only one of the playoffs.
We have a few more days to disect the matchups, but we are at the time of the season real football fans have been waiting for since early August.
Peter DiGiovanni covers high school football for Digital First Media and PaPrepLive.com. You can reach him at pdgiovanni07@gmail. com. Follow him on Twitter @PeteDLN.