Six region titles, six playoff berths still up for grabs

Defensive end Antonio Showers (9) has nine sacks this season for top-ranked Tucker. (Mark Brock/DeKalb County Schools Athletics)

Two of the region championships and 26 of the playoff berths in Class AAAAAA have already been decided heading into the final week of the regular season.

The leaves six region titles and the final six berths, as well as virtually all of the seeding, up for grabs this weekend.

Here’s a look at the playoff scenarios in each region:

*Region 1: Coffee, Lee County and Northside-Warner Robins have clinched playoff berths. The winner of the Lee County-Coffee game will be the region champion, and the loser of the Valdosta-Houston County game will be the one team from the region that doesn’t make the playoffs. The most complicated scenario would come from wins by Coffee and Valdosta, which would leave Lee County, Northside and Valdosta tied for second place (with each team 2-2 in the region and 1-1 against each other). If Lee County beats Coffee, the final seeds will be: 1. Lee County, 2. Coffee, 3. Northside, 4. Valdosta-Houston County winner.

*Region 2: Brunswick has completed the region portion of its schedule and sits in first place at 3-1 in the region. Glynn Academy and Richmond Hill, both 2-1, have clinched playoff berths and can force a three-way tie for first with victories this week (Glynn Academy plays Bradwell Institute, and Richmond Hill plays Effingham County). A loss by either team would leave it up to the head-to-head meetings with Brunswick to decide the champion. Brunswick lost to Glynn Academy and beat Richmond Hill. Effingham County wrapped up the No. 4 spot with a 38-13 victory against Bradwell Institute last week.

*Region 3: Evans, Heritage-Conyers, Grovetown and Lakeside-Evans have clinched the four playoff berths. Evans can claim the region title with a victory over Heritage. A Heritage victory would create a tie for first place, and Grovetown would make it a three-way tie if it beats Lakeside. If Evans and Lakeside win, Heritage, Grovetown and Lakeside would be tied for second place. The computer Maxwell Ratings project that Evans and Grovetown will win this week (Evans by 5 over Heritage, Grovetown by 12 over Lakeside). If it works out that way, the playoff seedings would be: 1. Evans, 2. Grovetown, 3. Heritage, 4. Lakeside.

*Region 4: Top-ranked Tucker and No. 7 Stephenson are unbeaten in region play, and their game on Friday will determine the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds. Lovejoy is off this week and has locked up the No. 3 seed. Drew, Jonesboro and M.L. King are tied for fourth place. Drew will be the No. 4 seed if it beats Jonesboro because the Titans also beat M.L. King earlier this year. M.L. King, which beat Jonesboro on Oct. 14, gets the fourth spot if it beats Mount Zion-Jonesboro and Jonesboro beats Drew. Jonesboro needs a victory over Drew and a loss by M.L. King to advance to the playoffs.

*Region 5: Mays clinched the region championship with a 34-24 victory over Alexander last week. The winner of the Douglas County-Alexander game will be the No. 2 seed. Douglas County has clinched a playoff berth, but Alexander could be eliminated if it loses and Northgate upsets Mays. Losses by Alexander and Northgate will produce a three-way tie for third place with Hughes that would be broken by point differential among the tied teams. Hughes, which is off this week, will be eliminated if Alexander wins.

*Region 6: Harrison has clinched the region title, its first since 2005. The winner of the Dalton-Allatoona game will be the No. 2 seed, and the loser will finish in third place. Sequoyah and Creekview are tied for fourth place, and Sequoyah won the head-to-head meeting. The Chiefs can claim the No. 4 seed with a victory over Sprayberry or with a Creekview loss to Harrison. If Sequoyah loses and Creekview wins, Creekview gets the playoff berth.

*Region 7: Alpharetta, Centennial and Chattahoochee have clinched playoff berths. Alpharetta is in first place and can win the region title with a victory against Chattahoochee. A Chattahoochee victory would produce a three-way tie for first place that would include Centennial. Cambridge, Johns Creek and Pope are tied for fourth place. All are playing one of the region’s bottom three teams on the final weekend, and Maxwell projects each one is at least a seven-point favorite. If one loses, the head-to-head result between the other two would decide the playoff berth – Pope beat Cambridge, Cambridge beat Johns Creek, and Johns Creek beat Pope.

*Region 8: Dacula, Winder-Barrow, Gainesville and Lanier have clinched the four playoff berths. Dacula will win the region title if it beats Winder-Barrow. A victory by Winder-Barrow would create a tie for first place that could be a three-way tie and include Gainesville if the Red Elephants beat Lanier. Winder-Barrow and Gainesville would be tied with Lanier for second place if they both lose. The Maxwell Ratings project that Dacula and Gainesville will win this week (Dacula by 10 over Winder-Barrow, Gainesville by 1 over Lanier). If it plays out that way, the playoff seedings would be: 1. Dacula, 2. Gainesville, 3. Winder-Barrow, 4. Lanier.


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