The regional finals are here, when we finally get to see who truly were the best teams in their areas across each division. Sunday's matchup between the Marion Local Flyers and the New Bremen Cardinals is one of those matchups, the Flyers projected to advance to the second round with a 45-3 victory. 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 Flyers rank 1st in the division while the Cardinals rank 24th. 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.
Looking to build upon their 4-game winning streak, Marion Local comes into the week at 10-2. After their 24-21 win against the Fort Loramie Redskins, they are confident in their ability to finish strong. The Flyers offense has been one of the best in the division, especially in recent weeks. For the year, they rank 16th in Division 7 with 32.1 points per game. Over the last 2 weeks, they've scored an average of 32.1. On defense, their last few weeks haven't even done justice to how good they've been all season. They've given up 13.5 points per game over their last 2, down from their average of 10.6, which ranks 3rd in their division on the season.
New Bremen is no stranger to winning recently as they come off of a 2-game winning streak, including last week's 42-14 win against the Perry Commodores. That brings their record to 9-3 as they look to add another notch to the win column. While the Cardinals offense has not been particularly great, ranked 28th in Division 7 with 29.1 points per game, they have improved in recent weeks, averaging 43.5 points over their last 2 contests. Defensively, they'll look to show more signs of improvement after giving up 14.5 points on average in their last 2 games, improved from a On defense, they'll also be looking for improvement, which they have shown signs of in recent weeks. Over their last 2 games, they've allowed an average of 14.5 points, an improvement over their 36th-ranked 21.4 points allowed per game on the year.
Prediction: Marion Local to win (99.98% chance of victory)