Mechanicsburg @ West Liberty-Salem
Sunday, October 27, 2019
By Staff

In a week 10 matchup with major playoff implications, the Mechanicsburg Indians go on the road to face off against the West Liberty-Salem Tigers. The Indians enter the game projected to finish 4th in Region 24 at 9-1. The Tigers come in projected to finish 4th in Region 20 at 8-2 The Indians come into the game as 6-point favorites and expect to take home the victory and ultimately complete their pursuit of the postseason. West Liberty-Salem enters the game as the 17th-ranked team in Division 5, which makes this a key matchup in the division as Mechanicsburg comes in ranked 8th. Fans on both sides head into Friday expecting the win but only one of the two can come out on top. The teams are no strangers to one another, playing against each other in each of the last five years. Over their last 5 matchups, the Indians have been superior, coming out on top in 4 of them. However, the past won't matter come kickoff. In last year's installment, the Indians came out on top by a score of 28-7.

Mechanicsburg is currently on a 3-game winning streak, which they hope to continue on Friday. Coming off of a 52-0 win against the Fairbanks Panthers, they are 8-1 and their confidence continues to build as they finish up the year. The Indians score an average of 43.7 points per game, which ranks 23rd in the state offensively. In recent weeks, they've been even more proficient, scoring an average of 50.5 points per game over their last 2 games. Their defense has been equally impressive, particularly in recent weeks. Over their last 2 games, they've allowed just 0 points per game - that's even better than the shutdown defense they've played all season. On the year, they rank 11th in the state on defense, allowing an average of 0 points.

West Liberty-Salem will look to continue the momentum of their 2-game winning streak, the most recent addition to which was a 41-0 win against the Northeastern Jets last week, bringing their record to 8-1. The Tigers are consistently explosive on offense, ranking 15th with 45.6. However, they have come back towards earth lately, averaging 34.33 points per game over the last 3 weeks. While recent games have affected averages negatively, their defense is one of the best as well. They rank 5th in their division, giving up an average of 10.3 points per game.

Prediction: Mechanicsburg to win (62.98% chance of victory) 

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