Some end paths, but others moving on in playoffs
For Warren G. Harding, Poland, Crestview and McDonald, it’s time to look forward to 2021.
For Canfield, Ursuline, South Range, Springfield and Warren John F. Kennedy, the postseason moves forward.
The Cardinals, Irish, Raiders, Tigers and Eagles all logged fourth-round playoff wins last weekend. As a result, thosee five teams will now play in the title games in their respective regions. Winners will advance to the Ohio High School Athletic Association football state semifinals.
Canfield (9-0) maintained its perfect record with a dominating 24-6 win over previously-unbeaten Streetsboro. The Cardinals will travel to Chardon (9-0) to take on the Hilltoppers, the top-seeded team in Division III, Region 9.
Canfield has now won 12 straight games dating back to last year.
Chardon is making its second straight appearance in the region 9 championship. Last year Chardon was eliminated by Aurora.
A pair of bracket-busters shook things up in Division IV, Region 13. Mentor Lake Catholic defeated top-seeded Canal Fulton-Northwest while Ursuline downed second-seeded Poland.
As a result the 12th-seeded Cougars (6-2) will travel to Youngstown to take on the sixth-seeded Irish (7-2).
Ursuline is making its first trip to a regional final since 2015 when it advanced to a state semifinal.
South Range (9-0) remained undefeated with a 45-29 win over Crestview. The second-seeded Raiders will have the daunting task of traveling to Kirtland (8-0) to take on the top-seeded Hornets in Division V, Region 17.
South Range and Kirtland previously met in the playoffs in back-to-back years in 2007 and 2008. The Raiders prevailed in the first meeting 45-30. The Hornets gained revenge a year later, 63-7. Then last year, the teams met in a second-round game which Kirtland won 38-7. Kirtland went on to win a state title.
Since 2011, Kirtland has appeared in eight state title games, winning five. In that span, the Hornets own an overall record of 135-6.
Springfield (9-0) advanced with a 21-0 home win over Mogadore. The top-seeded Tigers will get to play at home again, this time with an opportunity to defend the Division VI, Region 21 title they won a year ago en route to finishing as state runner-up.
Springfield will host Creston Norwayne (9-0), which advanced with a 20-13 win over Wickliffe.
Since the midway point of the 2017 season, Springfield owns an overall record of 37-2. Its only two losses in that span were a 20-17 regular season loss to McDonald in 2018 and last year’s setback to Anna in the Division VI state title game.
John F. Kennedy owns seven regional titles, the most among all schools in Trumbull County. The top-seeded Eagles (7-2) hope to add an eighth crown to their trophy case when they host Lucas (7-2) in Division VII, Region 25.
Kennedy extended its season with a 28-18 win over Dalton while the third-seeded Cubs downed McDonald 27-14.
Kennedy is looking for its first regional title since 2016, when the Eagles won the Division VII state championship.
Regional title games in Divisions I, II, III and VII will be played on Friday. Division IV, V and VI games will be played on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Division I sate semifinals are set. On Friday, Mentor will play Pickerington Central at New Philadelphia while Cincinnati Xavier will play Springfield at Piqua High School.