Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Sports

Week 10: East Hillsborough prep football preview

It's week 10 of the regular season, which is typically the final district games for most teams. It is also the time of the year we start figuring out who Armwood will trounce in the first couple of rounds of the playoffs before moving on to the region final.

Not so fast.

It has been a somewhat disappointing season for the 6-3 Hawks, who haven't had this many losses on the field in a decade. But as of last week, it appeared Armwood, 4-1 in 6A-8, would still move on to the postseason as the district runners up behind Hillsborough (7-1, 5-1).

Again, not so fast.

The Florida High School Athletics Association is currently investigating whether Jefferson used an ineligible player. If that's found to be the case — the FHSAA hadn't made a ruling as of press time — and the Dragons forfeit wins, it throws a monkey wrench in the equation.

Assuming Armwood and Sickles win tonight against King (2-6) and Leto (0-9), respectively, it would create a three-way tie atop the division with the Hawks, Gryphons and Terriers all at one loss.

There's also a potential conundrum in 7A-8. Newsome (4-4, 3-1) seals the second playoff spot behind Durant (8-0, 4-0) if it defeats Plant City (4-4, 2-2) tonight. But if the Raiders win and East Bay (3-5, 2-2) defeats Brandon, it presents another three-way tie atop the division.

If East Bay loses and Plant City wins, they take the runnerup spot.

In the case of tiebreakers, the teams will play Monday night. Fasten your seatbelts.

Plant City (4-4) at Newsome (4-4)

Last week: Plant City defeated Brandon 22-20; Newsome defeated Riverview 42-6.

Why you should go: The Wolves, 3-1 in district, can secure the second postseason spot in 7A-8 with a win tonight after missing the playoffs last year.

Lakewood (7-1) at Spoto (3-5)

Last week: Robinson defeated Lakewood 19-8; Spoto defeated Lennard 13-3.

Why you should go: Fullback Andrew Henry, filling in for an injured Eric Moates, ran 16 times for 111 yards and a TD last week in a win against Lennard.

Dunedin (4-4) at Lennard (0-9)

Last week: Dunedin defeated Middleton 17-7; Spoto defeated Lennard 13-3.

Why you should go: To avoid a winless season, Lennard will have to beat Dunedin, one of the Longhorns' two wins from last year.

Durant (8-0) at Riverview (2-6)

Last week: Durant defeated East Bay 28-3; Newsome defeated Riverview 42-6.

Why you should go: Durant wrapped up first place in 7A-8 with the win last week and improved to 8-0 for the first time in school history. Running back Jamarlon Hamilton has eclipsed the 100-yard mark in all but one game this season. Go see if he can do it again.

Brandon (1-7) at East Bay (3-5)

Last week: Plant City defeated Brandon 22-20; Durant defeated East Bay 28-3.

Why you should go: To see if East Bay can move a step closer to a potential playoff spot. The problem is that the Indians haven't won a home game all season. Meanwhile, Brandon hopes to keep things going in the right direction. The Eagles won their first game of the season two weeks ago and lost a two-point heartbreaker to Plant City last week.

Bloomingdale (4-4) at Plant (7-1)

Last week: Wharton defeated Bloomingdale 28-14 Oct. 19; Plant defeated Armwood 20-19.

Why you should go: Plant slipped past Armwood in a physical game last week and faces undefeated Robinson next week to end the season. Could this be a trap game against the Bulls?

King (2-6) at Armwood (6-3)

Last week: Hillsborough defeated King 43-7; Plant defeated Armwood 20-19.

Why you should go: With the loss last week to Plant, this marks the first time since 2002 that Armwood has lost three games on the field. That's bad news for a weak King team tonight.

Strawberry Crest (3-5) at Jefferson (4-4)

Last week: Sickles defeated Strawberry Crest 31-17; Jefferson defeated Leto 39-6.

Why you should go: The Chargers are known for their passing attack, but defensive lineman Jarrett Gretebeck has put together a nice season, collecting seven sacks so far. Jefferson may be down if the FHSAA forces it to forfeit games because an ineligible player.

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