In the second playoff matchup of the year for the Ironton Fighting Tigers, they are projected to come away with a 30-22 win over the Amanda-Clearcreek Aces. However, it should be one of the more hotly contested matchups of the round and all statistical predictions could easily go out the window. It's do or die for each team as always in the postseason. Regardless of the outcome, each team can take comfort in the fact that they had a successful enough season to get here, but only one team will be satisfied with the result as the other's season will end on a loss. The Aces, one of the top teams in Division 5, come into the game ranked 18th. The Fighting Tigers come in ranked 11th. A new matchup on the schedule for each team, Sunday's game is a chance for each to test its skills and strategies against an unfamiliar opponent. Stylistically and schematically, past matchups are often used as a guiding tool. This week, however, each team will likely take time to adjust to an unfamiliar opponent, which should make for some added excitement.
Amanda-Clearcreek is currently on a 2-game winning streak, which they hope to continue on Sunday. Coming off of a 41-10 win against the Columbus Academy Vikings, they are 9-2 and their confidence continues to build as they finish up the year. The Aces offense will look to continue to improve as they've scored an average of 35.8 points per game over their last 5 games, up from their season average of 32.7, which ranks 27th in Division 5. They rank similarly on defense, coming in at 26th in their division, allowing 18.3 points per game. That number has generally gone up in recent weeks as they've given up an average of 8 points in their last 2 games.
For Ironton, Sunday is a chance to expand on a 7-game winning streak after their 56-6 win against the Wellston Golden Rockets brought their record to 10-1. The Fighting Tigers offense is one of the most high-powered in their division, particularly in recent weeks. For the year, they rank 11th in Division 5 with 39.8 points per game. Over the last 2 weeks, they've scored an average of 39.8. On defense, they've been just as strong. Allowing just 5.6 points per game over the course of the season, their defense ranks 2nd in their division. Over the last 3 weeks, they've been even more proficient, giving up just 4.33 points per game.
Prediction: Ironton to win (89.30% chance of victory)