Normally at this time of year there would be teams needing that one more win to punch their playoff ticket while others might merely be playing out the schedule hoping to end the season on a positive note.
But like most things this year normal has taken a backseat to out-of-the-ordinary and the final regular season game will not determine whether or not teams will be continuing on in season 2 but more like where it will happen and who will they play.
In 2012 with Newaygo switching leagues the rivalry game between the Lions and Tigers wasn't scheduled. As fate would have it they ended up playing each other in the tournament.
This year COVID cancelled their annual matchup.
But the possibility of a post season game looms once again.
Newaygo (2-3) at Central Montcalm (3-2)
The Hornets came into Grant last week with just one loss, a close affair with league champion Reed City.
Then the Tigers dismantled them with a 41-13 rout.
The Lions defense yields big plays too often and the Hornets have the equipment to make those kinds of plays. The Hornets were stingy on defense early on but Grant slapped on twice the points the Tigs managed in their 2 previous games combined.
The Lion offense will score. Whether they can score enough would be the question.
Grant (2-2) at Reed City (5-0)
I love this matchup because the Tigers have the type of team that can stop the steamrolling Coyotes from an undefeated regular season and they are coming off two games in a row after a three week playoff so they should finally be in mid season form.
Grant will still have to create some turnovers and grind out some lengthy scoring drives to have a good shot in a tough road venue but a Tiger win certainly wouldn’t be a shocker.
Fremont 2 Big Rapids 0
The Packers (now 2-4) have played more games (40) against BR than any other opponent since 1950.
In the early 50’s before league affiliations they played a trio of games then from 1967 to 1980 the teams opened their season against each other. After a decade they resumed play in the 90’s mostly scheduling each other for the noncom season finale.Later they competed in the WWAC and the past few years in the CSAA Gold.
But they won’t be playing Friday.
The Cards (now 3-3) will forfeit due to their uptick in the number of COVID cases that moved the school to all virtual and the Packers will find out where they'll play their next game Sunday afternoon with early bets looking at either Spring Lake or Allendale as the likely opponent.
Hesperia (3-2) at White Cloud (2-3)
The Panthers look to finish the regular season with 3 straight while the Cloud would like to win one on the field with 2 forfeit victories under their belt.
Hesperia has too much offense and the hosts haven’t enough defense nor do they score often.
The Panthers could use the win to perhaps improve their seeding in a brutal playoff region. The teams include perennial powerhouse Pewamo Westphalia a Pirate team that has outscored their rivals 260-7, undefeated Ithaca, 4-1 Fowler- the only team to score on PW, and a rugged 3-2 North Muskegon team.
Holton (2-4) at Muskegon Catholic Central (5-0)
The Crusaders have tallied 193 points while yielding just 18.
The Devs would do well just to stay close in this one.