The Indians have one Friday night off to rest and recoup from their three game losing streak, because if they don’t break out of their funk, their season will be over. That said, we don’t usually put a team with a losing record in the poll – especially the final rankings, but Portage, who lost their two by three points each to highly ranked teams (Valpo & LaPorte), is the exception, although they’ll have to share their spot with….
History has been made in the RSN Top 10 – for the first time since the poll’s creation, the Roosevelt Panthers are part of it, and it’s a well earned spot in the rankings. Not only are the Panthers 6-2 on the season (their best record since 1987), they’re the Region’s second highest scoring team at 41.3 points per game & their defense has shutout three straight opponents. Not bad at all for a team that was 1-8 just a season ago.
Dropping two straight to close out the regular season is definitely not the direction the Brickies wanted to head into the tournament, but with back to back losses to Munster and Lowell, that’s right where the they are. The offense has scored a combined 21 points in the last three games, but a trip to South Bend to play St. Joe, whose defense is giving up over 24 points a game, may be exactly what they need. The last time Hobart beat St. Joe’s was during the 1987 state championship season.
Very quietly, the Governors have put together a solid season, especially on the defensive side of the ball. The last time they gave up more than 20 points was in their loss to Plymouth….back in Week #2. The offense is pretty explosive as well, averaging over 40 points a game since they were shutout by Lowell in Week #3. Lowell and Griffith are the main talking points when discussing Sectional #17, but don’t be surprised if the Govs have their say before it’s all said and done.
Now is the time for Andrean to show something they haven’t all season – consistency. It’s been feast or famine with the offense, which averages over 44 points per win and four (4) points per loss. That’s right FOUR points. The 59ers are dangerous when they put it all together – the question now is; how many in a row can they win now that it’s tournament time? The best they’ve done so far is two in a row.
Is there a Region team with more on the line now that the post-season is here?. Griffith has a chance to quiet the critics who say their numbers are inflated because of the schedule – and there’s no shortage of those. Or, those same voices can be proven right with a poor performance. Sure, all teams are playing for championships, but it seems like Griffith’s football reputation is also at stake.
The Bulldogs fell just short in trying to knock off a third member of DAC elite, as they lost to Michigan City by two points. Still, it’s a vast improvement from the team we thought we’d see after they lost to Merrillville in Week #3. Now Crown Point has a chance to achieve something that hasn’t been done in program history – win back to back sectional titles. Will the Dogs have their day?
Winners of five of their last six (with a two point loss to Crown Point being that one “L”), LaPorte may be hotter than any team outside of Lowell & Griffith heading into the post-season. The Slicers have not only proven they can win big, but they’re battle tested when it comes to tight games as well – three of those last five wins have come by a combined seven points. Such experience will come in handy the next few weeks.
For once, the Wolves are on the winning side of a tight DAC ball game. After dropping heart-breaking games to Valpo and LaPorte, City held on at Crown Point to close out the regular season on a high note. The Wolves have never won a sectional championship and this may be one of the best shots they ever get, but first things first – get through Munster, a team City has never beaten.
Sure, the level of competition wasn’t the most difficult, but Viking fans must have been thrilled to see a 42-point outburst last week in the win over Lake Central. Now comes the hard part for Valpo – a re-match with Penn. Since the two schools started playing each other in the opening week of the 1997 season, the Vikings have never beaten the Kingsmen twice in the same campaign. Until now?
The Devils started at #1 and finish at #1, a feat that rarely happens. As a matter of fact, there was never any consideration about taking them out of the top spot, as Lowell finished the regular season undefeated and riding a steamroller. No opponent finished a game within 13 points of them (congrats Portage for coming closest), and only two teams (KV & Crown Point) scored in the double digits. Since the start of the tournament in 1973, only three Region state champions have had undefeated, state championship seasons: Valpo in ’75, Hobart in ’87 & Andrean in ’13. Don’t be surprised if this team gets added to the list.