The Amanda-Clearcreek Aces and the Unioto Sherman Tanks meet on Friday for what looks like a relatively one-sided matchup. The Aces are projected to win by a score of 37-12 and have a 88.85% chance to win outright. The Aces rank 11th in Division 5 while the Sherman Tanks rank 80th in Division 3. For Unioto, the inferior team on paper, this is a chance to ride the home crowd and prove themselves capable against a solid opponent. However, for Amanda-Clearcreek, the expectation is a decisive road victory. A new matchup on the schedule for each team, Friday'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.
Still early in the season, Amanda-Clearcreek comes into the week projected to make the playoffs as the region's 1st-ranked team, where they'll look to expand upon last season's run, which ended in the Regional Quarterfinals with a loss to the Ridgewood Generals by a score of 41-23. Projected to finish out the season at 9-1, they can expect to get another shot at chasing the state title in 2019. Week 1 marked their first win of the season as 25-point underdogs against the Columbus Independence 76ers. In that first week, they scored among the most in the division, ranking 15th in Division 5. This was clearly the strength of the team. On defense, the 14 points they gave up ranked 32nd in the division.
For Unioto, while it is early in the season, playoffs would be a bit of a stretch. Projected to finish the regular season with a 6-4 record, they come into this week expected to finish the season as the 15th-ranked team in the regional playoff standings. As 25-point underdogs against the Vinton County Vikings last week, the Sherman Tanks ended up with their first win of the season. They will need to improve on both sides of the ball as their offense ranked 69th and their defense ranked 37th for the opening week.
Prediction: Amanda-Clearcreek to win (88.85% chance of victory)