Liberty Center @ Napoleon
Monday, September 2, 2019
By Staff

The Liberty Center Tigers have a tough game on the schedule for week 2, heading into Friday as a 1-point favorite over the Napoleon Wildcats. Projected as one of the closest matchups of the week, it's definitely one to keep an eye on. The game has implications regarding the strength of divisions 4 and 6 against one another as one of each division's best will take the field on Friday. The Wildcats enter the game ranked 25th in Division 4 while the Tigers enter the game ranked 4th in Division 6. In this evenly-matched a game, there is no way to tell who will come out on top. One of the more familiar matchups of week 2, both teams know what to expect. Liberty Center will hope to continue the recent trend, in which they've won 3 of the last 5 matchups. In last year's installment, the Tigers came out on top by a score of 21-0.

While it's a little early to be talking about playoffs, Liberty Center would be extremely disappointed if they missed out on the postseason - after losing in the State Semifinals in 2018 to the Orrville Red Riders by a score of 38-7, the Tigers are poised to make another run at the playoffs. They are projected to finish 2nd in the region and enter the playoffs with a 8-2 record. Week 1 marked their first win of the season as 1-point underdogs against the Tinora Rams. In that first week, they scored among the most in the division, ranking 22nd in Division 6. This was clearly the strength of the team. On defense, the 16 points they gave up ranked 37th in the division.

After missing out on the playoffs in 2018, Napoleon hopes this year can yield a postseason bid. After their 21-13 win against the Defiance Bulldogs in the season opener, they are projected to finish 8th in the regional playoff standings with a record of 7-3. With a win this week, their playoff chances will increase even further. As 1-point underdogs against the Defiance Bulldogs last week, the Wildcats ended up with their first win of the season. They will need to improve on both sides of the ball as their offense ranked 48th and their defense ranked 31st for the opening week.

Prediction: Liberty Center to win (85.47% chance of victory) 

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