More than a handful of contests this week have playoff implications. In fact, seven games with 14 teams are all vying for 16 spots in the playoffs that begin in two weeks. Here are some: Green Mountain (5-3) against Denver South (6-2) on Friday afternoon at 4pm; In the Plains Conference. #6 Pueblo West (6-2) takes on #5 Pueblo South (7-1) at Dutch Clark Stadium Friday night at 7pm for bragging rights in the Foothills Conference. Sand Creek (6-2) will be at Vista Ridge (5-3) in the Pikes Peak League on Friday at 7pm. And in the four-team Southwestern League the title is on the line Friday night at 7 p.m. between #8 Durango (7-1) and top-ranked Montrose (7-1). And there are more big games in Week 9:
#9 Loveland (6-1) at #7 Longmont (6-1) - 6:30pm Thursday, October 24, 2013
The hits just keep coming for the Indians as they continue pursuit of the Northern Conference crown. Loveland beat city rival Thompson Valley last week 35-13 and now lock-up with the leaders in the north Longmont for a share of the league lead. Back-up QB Jacob Weinmaster's 3-touchdown performance couldn't have come at a better time. The junior got the start in place of Mike Zweigle, who was ejected from the Windsor game and had to sit out the game against TV. The Indians beat Longmont last year 34-27.
The Trojans can lock-up the conference title a week early with a win Thursday night at home. Granted, Longmont can't just overlook Greeley Central next week but the Trojans have been very good this year at taking it one game at a time. Longmont opened the season with a loss to 5A foe Ralston Valley 44-29. Since then the Trojan defense hasn't allowed a team to score more than two touchdowns on them in a game the rest of the way. 5A Mountain View did put up 35 points on Longmont but that one was win in the string of 6-games since the open week loss.
#2 Monarch (6-1) at #10 Broomfield (5-2) - 7pm Friday, October 25, 2013
It's another big game in a string of big games for the Coyotes as they make the final push to defend the 2012 4A State Title. Monarch's refocused approach after a tough home loss to #1 Montrose has produced huge wins. 50+ point wins the last three weeks against Golden, Montbello and George Washington. The pressure is still on Phil Bravo's team as the 'yotes need to claim a league title to secure a home game for the playoffs. Through week 8 Monarch is sitting 11th in the CHSAA wildcard standing and that means if the season ended after week 8, the Coyotes would be on the road to begin defense of their title. The last two opponents (Broomfield and Standley Lake) are sure to kick up the wildcard point possibilities, but wins are everything in the end.
We just seem to be able to find ways to win games," said Broomfield Head Coach Gary Davies after the Eagles 5th straight win this season. Broomfield bounced back after losing to 5A non-conference opponents (Pomona and Legacy) and now sit tied for 8th place in the CHSAA wildcard points. "I like where we're sitting," added Davies, who spoke to Colorado Preps after Broomfield's 21-13 win over Montbello last week. The stakes are raised this Friday with a Mountain League title up for grabs against a long time rival from Louisville. "Just playing Monarch is the big thing," Davis said for his players whether the teams are battling for a championship or just playing out the season. Monarch beat Broomfield last year 42-7 on their way to the 4A State Championship.
Wheat Ridge (5-3) at Dakota Ridge (5-3) (Jeffco Stadium) - 7:30pm Friday, October 25, 2013
Right now the Farmers are standing on the outside of the playoff picture but can remedy that with a patented Wheat Ridge year-end run. The Farmers through eight weeks are three spots out of a playoff birth and didn't do themselves any favors in the loss to Denver South 40-13 two weeks ago. But a Plains Conference championship is not out of reach with 3-teams (WR, Dakota Ridge and Green Mountain) tied behind South with two games left. The Farmers, working on their first back to back wins since since weeks 3 and 4 with no clear statistical leader on offense but plenty of different athletes that have stepped up throughout the season which is typical of a Reid Kahl team.
The Eagles will be playing for a playoff berth Friday with a league title unlikely after losing to Denver South last week 34-21. Coach Woj's (Ron Woitalewicz) teams can typically outscore you with little need to really lock teams up defensively, but South's 546-yards total was too much to overcome. Dakota Ridge will go to the air against Wheat Ridge with QB Braxton Thais spreading the field. The senior has thrown for 1,784 yards this season with 19 TDs and 6 INTs. Wheat Ridge beat the Eagles last year 21-10.
Stat information from: MaxPreps, CHSAANow.org, Denver Post and Loveland Reporter-Herald