Keeler: Playoff picture sharpens

Next week is the last week of the football regular season. Yet another season has flown by. With only two games left, now is a good time to look at where the local teams stand in the playoff picture.

It looks like we could have another successful season, as far as advancing teams to the playoffs.

Things are obviously different this season with the new six classification system, and 16 teams advancing to each regional.

Sherando is first right now in Class 4A North. The Warriors with a 7-1 record have a 29.0 VHSL power points rating. As long as they win one of their final two games they should hang on to the top spot, which could set them up for a big playoff run.

The Warriors have had a balanced attack on offense this season, led by quarterback Reid Entsminger. The thunder and lightning combination of George Aston and LeeQuan Johnson has spearheaded their rushing attack.

Sherando’s defense has been just as strong. The Warriors have allowed only 13.3 points per game.

Central also has put itself in good position for a playoff run. The Falcons, at 8-2, are in fifth in Class 3A East with a 22.75 rating. If the Falcons win their last two games they could move up, depending on what other teams around them do. James Monroe is in fourth at 23.5, but still has to play Courtland, who is in third in Sherando’s region. Loudoun Valley is in second, but still has two tough games left with Division 4 teams Woodgrove and Loudoun County.

The Falcons have scored the most points of any Division 3 team, averaging 44.0 points per game. Central quarterback Hayden Bauserman is closing in on yet another 2,000 yard season, but the Falcons also have a solid running game led by the area’s top rusher, Daniel Molina.

Central’s defense is also strong, allowing only 16.7 points per game.

Warren County is currently seventh in Class 3A East with a 20.5 rating. If the Wildcats can beat both Strasburg and Madison County to close out the season they could move up at least one spot.

At 5-3, the Wildcats have had a good season despite losing a lot of players to graduation last June. Warren County senior Demetrus Yates has rushed for over 1,000 yards this season and is second in the area in rushing.

Skyline is currently in 12th Class 3A East, and finishes its season tonight at home with Sherando. Win or lose, the Hawks have a good shot at making the playoffs, but certainly they would like to pull off the upset tonight and go in on a positive note.

The Hawks are 3-1 against Division 3 teams this season, and playing in a district with mostly Division 4 teams could help them make a run in the postseason.

As is stands now, the Hawks would be playing at Central in the first round of the playoffs, but a lot can change in the next few weeks.

Strasburg is currently on the outside looking in, but a win over Warren County tonight, and/or Central next week, would go a long way in helping the Rams make the playoffs.

The Rams have lost some close games, including a tough loss to Madison County last week. With the win, Madison County leapfrogged Strasburg into the final playoff spot.

It looks like the area will have either four or five teams make the playoffs, which is pretty good.

Much has changed with the new six classification system, it’s good to see the local teams doing well is something that hasn’t changed.

Contact Assistant Sports Editor Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or tkeeler@nvdaily.com