It all comes down to this: Week 10 in the Bayside
Week 10 of Bayside football, marking the end of the regular season, is upon us. While it’s been a fun season, we all know the real excitement is about to begin.
This year has been full of surprises. The biggest is perhaps the resurgence of Easton High. From a dismal 2-8 season in 2015 to at 6-4, possibly 7-3, this year, the Warriors just missed making the playoffs. That’s quite a turnaround.
Who else had Matt Griffith as Bayside Coach of the Year in their preseason office pool? Honestly, I didn’t. I figured Easton would hover around .500 but get skunked against the powerhouse teams on its schedule. Instead, its three losses to Kent Island, Queen Anne’s, and North Caroline came by a total of 14 points.
Unless somebody else wins a game in December, Griffith would have to be the Bayside’s top coach for 2016.
Speaking of strong performances, did even the biggest North Bayside homers foresee the division going 25-1 against the South? Last year, the tally was 22-4 in favor of the North. This year, only Parkside’s 42-0 win over Colonel in Week 4 kept the North from running the table.
It’s doubtful many would have predicted Stephen Decatur football would be at serious risk of having a winless season. I admit, 3-7 was being bandied about a lot, but 0-10? No. The funny thing is, that’s still possible.
Is anyone reading this able to say they figured Colonel Richardson would make its best run at the playoffs in a decade, with their shortest schedule in 18 years? Me neither, but it’s true.
They’re a win, or loss by Perryville, away from their first playoff game since 2004. (The team went 6-4 on the field in 2006 but had to forfeit three wins over an ineligible player.)
Yes, there were some surprises. Now, though, it’s math time. Let’s go over the playoff math really quick, and then I’ll make predictions.
In the 2A East, Kent Island cannot be overtaken as the top seed, even if Queen Anne’s beats them Friday. Kent Island’s lowest possible total is 101.3 total points. The Lions, with a win over the Buccaneers, can only get to 99.1 without gaining the same bonus points Kent Island would also gain from games like Washington-Parkside — so that race has has been called, as political pundits would say. (They’ll be doing that next week for real, by the way, so get out and vote. I’m a write-in, by the way.)
Queen Anne’s, Elkton, and North Caroline can finish anywhere between second and fourth, but no higher or lower. If both the Lions and Bulldogs lose (Elkton won’t; you’ll see why in a minute), three important things happen.
First, the Lions go to the No. 3 seed and would visit Elkton in Week 11. Second, North Caroline is No. 4 and gets a rematch of Week 3’s wild game against Kent Island, this time on the road. Third, Colonel makes
the playoffs for the first time since 2004 since, in this scenario, they would beat North Caroline.
In the 1As, C-SD and Bo Manor are in and neither can go below No. 2; C-SD will lock down No. 1, no matter what the Eagles do, with a win over Easton. If Easton beats C-SD, Bo Manor still has to win to take the top seed, and get help from among Stephen Decatur, Catoctin, Perryville, and North EastCecil (which, like Decatur, is winless, and plays Elkton).
Plus, Wicomico, Seaford, Del., Colonel, Washington, and Snow Hill can still give C-SD bonus points with wins. The Eagles trail the Vikings by 9.5 points right now; Joppatowne visits Bo Manor on Friday, and is worth eight points. So, the Eagles need to top the Mariners, and collect two more bonus points than C-SD this week, plus C-SD has to lose, for the top two seeds to flip-flop in the 1A East.
Colonel makes the playoffs with a win, or a loss by Perryville, since that would mean the only team that could overtake them failed to do so.
Colonel’s biggest problem is the dearth of bonus points. Two of the four teams they beat this year, Arcadia and Nandua, Va., are finished for the year; Virginia starts play a week ahead of Maryland, and neither made the playoffs. That leaves Washington, and winless Snow Hill.
However, that’ll be moot if the Colonels can find a way to beat their county rival.
Final thought: it’s possible that again this year, six of the North’s seven teams will make the playoffs. At the minimum, five will: C-SD, Kent Island, North Caroline, Queen Anne’s, and (at least) one of Kent County and Colonel.
Here comes Week 10, the last game for more than half the football seniors in the Bayside Conference. There are games in Queen Anne’s, Caroline, Dorchester, Wicomico, and Worcester Counties this week, so nobody’s more than half an hour from the action. Enjoy! Thursday’s Game Washington (2-7) at Parkside (5-4) Parkside already won the Salisbur y city title. A victor y here would make it the undisputed top team in the South Bayside (and the only one with a winning record). — Rams, 35-14.
Friday’s Games Game of the Year Queen Anne’s (8-1) at Kent Island (9-0) And the Bayside Conference regular-season champion will be the... (RADIO: 94.3 WINX-FM, pregame 6:45 p.m.) — Bucs, 21-17.
N. Caroline (8-1) at Col. Richardson (4-4) The Superintendent’s Cup stays in Ridgely for at least one more year. — Bulldogs, 48-20.
Easton (6-3) at Cambridge-SD (7-2) No outcome here would shock me. And if the wrong Easton team shows up, it could be ugly. (RADIO: WCEM-AM 1240, pregame 6:45 p.m.) — Warriors, 42-41, overtime.
Wicomico (3-6) at J. M. Bennett (4-5) Bennett will have the satisfaction of knowing they didn’t finish below .500. — Clippers, 31-20.
Snow Hill (0-9) at Decatur (0-9) I just typed “Decatur (0-9). Still can’t believe it. Next year will be better, though. I hope Snow Hill keeps its program, after two long, bleak seasons. — Seahawks, 28-13.
Kent County (4-5) at Fallston (3-6) Marcquan Greene, the all-time leading scorer in Bayside football history, will be able to say he made the playoffs all four years as a varsity starter. Not only is that fitting, it’s something few can say. — Trojans, 35-27. Last Week: 7-0. Season: 56-8 (.875). Career: 842-174 (.829). Follow me on Twitter: @ Davetalkssports.
Cambridge-South Dorchester’s Jimmy Schulze makes the catch against Washington Friday, Oct. 21.