One of the most highly anticipated matchups of the state semifinals comes between the Wheelersburg Pirates and the Johnstown-Monroe Johnies, the Pirates projected to win by a score of 27-21. 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 Pirates, one of the top teams in Division 5, come into the game ranked 1st. The Johnies come in ranked 2nd. Having matched up in 2017, there is a degree of familiarity between the two. Last season, the Pirates beat the Johnies 34-7.
Looking to build upon their 11-game winning streak, Wheelersburg comes into the week at 12-1. After their 24-16 win against the Madison Mohawks, they are confident in their ability to finish strong. The Pirates rank 19th in Division 5 on offense, scoring an average of 35.5. However, over the last 2 weeks, their average is down to 29.5 points per game. On defense, their last few weeks haven't even done justice to how good they've been all season. They've given up 14.5 points per game over their last 2, down from their average of 9.7, which ranks 2nd in their division on the season.
Johnstown-Monroe will look to continue the momentum of their 9-game winning streak, the most recent addition to which was a 45-14 win against the Meadowbrook Colts last week, bringing their record to 12-1. The Johnies rank 20th in Division 5 on offense, scoring an average of 35.2. However, over the last 3 weeks, their average is down to 31.67 points per game. On defense, their last few weeks haven't even done justice to how good they've been all season. They've given up 10.5 points per game over their last 2, down from their average of 10.2, which ranks 4th in their division on the season.
Prediction: Wheelersburg to win (78.08% chance of victory)