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 Saturday, the Central Catholic Fighting Irish come in projected to beat the Avon Eagles by a score of 30-26. 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 Eagles rank 3rd in the division while the Fighting Irish rank 2nd. A new matchup on the schedule for each team, Saturday'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.
Avon comes into the game on a 9-game winning streak. After last week's 35-28 win against the Anthony Wayne Generals, they are 11-1 and look to continue the positive momentum. On offense, the Eagles have been one of the best in the state this season, ranking 6th with 46.6 points per game. Recent weeks haven't been quite as explosive as they've averaged 42 points per game but they remain one of the most explosive offenses statewide. Their defense gives up an average of 19.5 points per game, ranking 29th in their division.
Central Catholic will look to continue the momentum of their 12-game winning streak, the most recent addition to which was a 56-16 win against the Avon Lake Shoremen last week, bringing their record to 12-0. The Fighting Irish have been extremely impressive on offense all season, scoring 43.9 points per game, which ranks 14th in the state. In recent weeks, they've cooled off a little, scoring 39.33 points per game in their last 3 games. On defense, even after the last 2 have affected their average negatively, they're also one of the best in the state, ranking 4th with 5.2 points allowed on average.
Prediction: Central Catholic to win (94.78% chance of victory)