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Sectional draw for local football teams revealed

By DAVID RISLEY - drisley@thecouriertimes.com

It’s almost hard to believe the the IHSAA football tournament starts in 10 days. My, how time flies!

The organization conducted its draw Sunday night for the annual gridiron tourney and our five local teams now know the paths they must take to get to the state finals in Lucas Oil Stadium Nov. 23 (Classes 2A, 4A, and 6A) and Nov. 24 (Classes A, 3A, and 5A).

Sectionals are Oct. 19, 26, and Nov. 2; regionals are Nov. 9; and semi-states are Nov. 16. All records listed below are through Week 8 of the regular season.

Class 4A Sectional 22 (8 teams)

There is no clear-cut favorite in this sectional, and five teams probably have a legitimate shot of winning it.

On Friday, Oct. 19, Shelbyville (1-7) is at Mt. Vernon-Fortville (5-3), Greenwood (2-6) plays at New Castle (4-4), Beech Grove (6-2) visits Mooresville (7-1), and Richmond (1-7) is at Connersville (0-8).

The Marauders defeated the Golden Bears 62-7 last Friday and the Red Devils defeated the host Spartans 34-16 for their only victory of the season back on Aug. 17. If the Trojans defeat the Woodmen, they most likely would host a sectional semifinal game Oct. 26.

Greenwood is the defending champion and made it all the way to the Class 4A southern semi-state championship game before losing at eventual state champion East Central 27-14.

Class 2A Sectional 36 (8 teams)

Shenandoah is the favorite to win this sectional, but that was the case last year, too, and the Raiders failed to pull it off.

On Oct. 19, Madison-Grant (2-6) visits Shenandoah (7-1), Elwood (0-8) is at Alexandria (3-5), Winchester (2-6) plays at Northeastern (5-3), and Frankton (3-5) goes to Lapel (4-4).

In games earlier this season, the Tigers defeated the Panthers 55-15, the Knights defeated the Golden Falcons 24-20, and the Bulldogs topped the Eagles 35-20. The Raiders did not face the Argylls this season. If Shenandoah wins its first-round game, it would play on the road Oct. 26.

Lapel upset the Raiders 34-20 at Dale Green Field to win the sectional championship a year ago. The Bulldogs lost to Eastbrook in the regional round of play.

Class 2A Sectional 37 (8 teams)

This sectional is wide open and one of the toughest in the state at the 2A level with seven of the eight teams at .500 or better. Two of the teams in this sectional are ranked in the top 10 in Class 2A.

On Oct. 19, Eastern Hancock (3-5) is at Heritage Christian (4-4), Centerville (5-3) travels to Indianapolis Scecina (7-1), Triton Central (7-1) plays at Milan (5-3), and Union County (4-4) is at Knightstown (7-1).

In games earlier this season, the Royals lost to the host Eagles 33-6 and the Panthers won on the road against the Patriots 34-28. If Knightstown wins its first-round game, it would play on the road Oct. 26 if the Tigers defeat the Indians. The Crusaders handed Triton Central its only loss thus far this season.

Scecina won this sectional last year and advanced all the way to the Class 2A southern semi-state championship game before losing to eventual state champion Southridge 24-7.

Class A Sectional 46 (8 teams)

Hagerstown has the best record in this field, but Indianapolis Lutheran has faced the toughest regular season schedule and probably is the favorite going into the tournament.

On Oct. 19, Edinburgh (0-8) is at Cambridge City Lincoln (0-8), Oldenburg Academy (4-4) visits Hagerstown (6-2), South Decatur (2-6) plays at Indianapolis Lutheran (5-3), and Tri (2-6) is at North Decatur (4-4).

None of these first-round games are re-matches of regular season contests. The Tigers would host a semifinal game on Oct. 26 if they get past the Twisters and the Golden Eagles beat the Lancers. which is a likely scenario. The Titans would host a game Oct. 26 if they defeat the Chargers and the Saints beat the Cougars, as expected.

Lutheran won this sectional a year ago and advanced all the way to the Class A southern semi-state championship game before losing to eventual state-runner-up Eastern Greene 12-8.