The regional finals offer some of the best matchups as teams in close proximity look to claim superiority over their area in the division. On Sunday, the Memorial Rough Riders come in projected to beat the Clear Fork Colts by a score of 33-28. 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. Memorial comes in as Division 4's 5th-ranked team. Clear Fork comes in ranked 6th. 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. Usually, matchups from the previous year are used in developing a strategy for upcoming games. For these two, no such opportunity will be afforded.
Memorial comes into the game on a 2-game winning streak. After last week's 55-20 win against the Van Wert Cougars, they are 11-1 and look to continue the positive momentum. On offense, the Rough Riders have been one of the best in the state this season, ranking 7th with 46.1 points per game. Recent weeks haven't been quite as explosive as they've averaged 42.2 points per game but they remain one of the most explosive offenses statewide. While recent games have affected averages negatively, their defense is one of the best as well. They rank 10th in their division, giving up an average of 13.3 points per game.
Clear Fork will look to continue the momentum of their 12-game winning streak, the most recent addition to which was a 26-8 win against the Clearview Clippers last week, bringing their record to 12-0. The Colts have been extremely impressive on offense all season, scoring 43.2 points per game, which ranks 21st in the state. In recent weeks, they've cooled off a little, scoring 23 points per game in their last 2 games. Nevertheless, the defense could actually be the true strength of the team, which they've shown in their most recent contests. Over the last 2 games, they've allowed only 7 points per game. However, success on defense isn't just a recent trend - on the season, their defense ranks 5th in their division, allowing 11.1 points per game.
Prediction: Memorial to win (76.51% chance of victory)