Division 5 and Division 6 playoff analysis, complete with district winners, semifinalists and winners
Here is a glance at the Division 5 and Division 6 playoffs.
Quick quiz: which teams won these titles last season? It was Grand Rapids West Catholic in Division 5 and Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central in Division 6.
In Region 1 the aforementioned West Catholic has a rough road. Should it reach the region final it will likely play Menominee in the U.P.
West Catholic could be challenged in the first round with Muskegon Oakridge making the trek to Grand Rapids.
A Kingsford-Menominee final in district 1 will also provide interest.
In Region 2 the district finals should provide drama. In district 1 Portland is expected to have a rematch with Lansing Catholic Central and quarterback Tony Poljan. Portland handed C.C. its only loss, 28-6, as it forced Poljan into four interceptions. In district 2 the final should also be a rematch. Last week Freeland whipped Frankenmuth 42-7. I realize most will expect Freeland to easily defeat Frankenmuth again but often a team that wins by such a great margin will experience a letup the second time.
I like Portland to win its region and then defeat Menominee in the semifinal.
In the other bracket the competition doesn’t measure up to the upper bracket. There are two undefeated teams in Region 3 and 4, there are four in the other two regions.
In district 1 in Region 3 we should again have a rematch in the final. On Oct. 16 Buchanan defeated Berrien Springs 21-19. So often when a rematch takes place with two teams so closely matched the team that lost the first time wins the second. And I’m going with Berrien Springs.
In district 2 look for Ida to win the title and then defeat Berrien Springs for the region title.
River Rouge should have no trouble winning district 1 in Region 4 and will likely play the winner of the Algonac-Almont game for the region title. Algonac defeated Almont 21-7 in midseason and I look for the Muskrats to win again. I’m picking Algonac to defeat River Rouge and for Ida to defeat Algonac in a semifinal.
Ida reaches its first state final but losses to Portland, which won the state title in 2012.
In Region 1 the only team that can keep Traverse City St. Francis from the title is Boyne City. St. Francis defeated Boyne City, at home, 32-13, on Sept. 26.
In Region 2 district 1 is highly competitive with two teams sitting at 9-0, and the other two at 8-1. Ithaca hasn’t played a close game all season and that could come back to bite the Yellowjackets but not in the district. They should handle either Millington or Sanford-Meridian in the final.
The district 2 winner, likely Burton Bendle, will be no match for Ithaca in the region final.
Region 3 has at least three teams that can win the title. I’m going with Montague. The Wildcats have an experienced coach (Pat Collins) and they play a tough schedule. Montague will likely play at Grand Rapids NorthPointe Christian in what could be a close game and win the district 1 title. Schoolcraft should win the district 2 title and I look for Montague to get past Schoolcraft.
In Region 4 look for Jackson Lumen Christi win two road games and claim the district 1 title.
In district 2 Madison Heights Madison should play Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central, the defending state champion, in the district final and I look for St. Mary C.C. to advance.
Look for Lumen Christi to sneak past St. Mary C.C. but lose to Montague in a semifinal.
Montague plays Ithaca for the title and wins by a touchdown.