The Region 6-5A playoff picture came into a little more focus last week, and it could clear up even more on Friday evening.
However, it could also go back into chaos as well.
Hendersonville and Beech swap guests this week, as the Commandos play host to Gallatin while Beech entertains Station Camp. The Commandos and Bucs would take big steps toward securing playoff spots with wins, while the Bison and Green Wave would keep things murky with road victories.
The Commandos (6-1 overall, 3-1 in Region 6-5A), fresh off their 31-0 victory over the Bison, remain in a tie atop the region standings, albeit now with two other teams instead of four, as was the case last week.
Gallatin (4-3, 2-2) has struggled on third-down situations the previous two weeks (2 of 18) and has turned the ball over five times in back-to-back losses to Station Camp and Beech.
Wave junior tailback Jordan Mason rushed for 170 yards, but Gallatin never got off the ground after Beech took control in the first quarter last week.
Hendersonville limited Station Camp to 89 yards of total offense and just four first downs.
Senior Jack Towe led the Commandos in rushing (91 yards on 11 carries), but classmate Mike Harris finished with more total yards (63 rushing, 45 receiving) and caught a 45-yard touchdown pass as well.
The Commandos have won back-to-back contests since a 49-21 loss at Hillsboro on Sept. 18. They are ranked seventh in the Associated Press Class 5A Statewide Prep Football Poll.
Gallatin has lost two straight games and three out of the last four contests. With games against Hillsboro and Cane Ridge remaining, the Green Wave need a victory on Friday to strengthen their chances of finishing in the top four to earn a playoff spot.
Gallatin leads the all-time series by a wide margin, but Hendersonville has won six out of the last nine meetings between the long-time rivals.
Both teams will have a week off following Friday’s game, with the Commandos traveling to Glencliff following the bye week while Gallatin will host Hillsboro.
Station Camp (2-5 overall, 2-2 in Region 6-5A) at Beech (5-2, 3-1)
Kickoff at 7 p.m. at Shackle Island Stadium
Last week: The Bison suffered a 31-0 loss at Hendersonville. The Buccaneers rolled to a 45-7 victory over visiting Gallatin.
Last meeting between the two teams: Beech captured a 26-14 victory over visiting Station Camp in last year’s season opener.
Beech can solidify its playoff hopes with a victory on Friday, while Station Camp can create a mess by winning on the road.
Although the Bison were shut down offensively by Hendersonville, Station Camp still has a shot at a top-four finish in Region 6-5A, with games against Cane Ridge and Glencliff remaining.
Beech’s defense did most of the heavy lifting against Gallatin, forcing four turnovers. Among those was a 60-yard interception return for a touchdown by junior Chris Peach.
The Buccaneer offense turned two of the other three takeaways into touchdowns as well. Senior Ian Hafner scored four touchdowns on just five touches (three receiving touchdowns and one rushing touchdown), while classmate Rodrick Napper rushed for more than 100 yards for the fifth time this season (142 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries).
Station Camp was without junior quarterback Tyler Thompson and senior linebacker Chris Dunavin last week as both were injured two weeks ago against Gallatin.
Dunavin will not play against Beech but could resume practicing next week. Thompson (knee) will not be able to play, and the Bison will likely start sophomore Cole Spears at quarterback for the second straight week in his absence.
Station Camp now sits one game behind Hendersonville, Beech and Hillsboro, and the Bison are now tied with Cane Ridge and Gallatin.
Station Camp holds the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Green Wave and will host Cane Ridge on Oct. 23 before finishing the regular season at Glencliff.
Beech will travel to Hunters Lane on Oct. 23 and will conclude the regular season by hosting Hillsboro on Oct. 30.
Beech and Station Camp don’t play next week.
Westmoreland (4-3) at White House Heritage (3-3)
Kickoff at 7 p.m.
Last week: The Eagles claimed a 34-7 victory at Eagleville. The Patriots rolled to a 44-7 victory at Greenbrier.
Last meeting between the two programs: White House Heritage captured an 18-12 victory over visiting Westmoreland last season.
It will be more than 11 months since the Patriots played a home game.
White House Heritage has opened the season with six consecutive games on the road.
However, the Eagles visit for the first of four consecutive home games to conclude the regular season.
Both teams enter the contest on a winning streak, with Westmoreland having won its last four games and the Patriots riding a three-game streak.
During that stretch, the Eagles have outscored their opponents 152-33, but the combined record of the four teams that Westmoreland has beaten is 8-18.
White House Heritage has also been dominating during its winning streak, outscoring its foes by a 115-51 margin. However, the Patriots only have one win over a team with a record of better than .500.
White House Heritage racked up 341 total yards in last Friday’s victory, rushing for 273 yards and five touchdowns.
Patriot senior fullback Kyle Fuhrer gained 84 yards and a touchdown, while senior tailback Thad Baker picked up 73 yards and scored three times.
White House Heritage sophomore quarterback Austin Gunter threw touchdown passes of 53 yards to senior split end Branson Kramm and 15 yards to senior tight end Will Scannell.
The Patriots won the District 9-AA championship last season and advanced to the second round of the Class 3A playoffs, as did the Eagles (who placed second in 9-AA a year ago). The two teams are no long in the same classification, with Westmoreland dropping to Class 2A and White House Heritage remaining in 3A.
The Patriots conclude the regular season with three consecutive regional contests, against visiting Whites Creek, East Nashville and Goodpasture.
Following Friday’s game, the Eagles will have a week off before finishing the regular season with back-to-back regional contests, hosting Cascade before a game at Watertown that could determine second place in Region 4-2A.
Westmoreland likely secured a playoff berth after improving to 4-1 in region play with last Friday’s victory.
The two programs have played just twice, with the Eagles capturing a 21-0 victory over visiting White House Heritage during the 2013 season prior to last season’s setback on the Patriots’ home field.
Gallatin-Hendersonville Series History
1946 Gallatin 27-13
1947 Gallatin 41-13
1948 Gallatin 33-0
1949 Gallatin 60-0
1964 Gallatin 13-0
1965 Gallatin 26-6
1966 Hendersonville 21-13
1967 Tie 7-7
1968 Gallatin 39-13
1969 Gallatin 14-6
1970 Gallatin 12-7
1971 Gallatin 27-9
1972 Hendersonville 21-0
1973 Hendersonville 31-13
1974 Gallatin 41-17
1975 Gallatin 45-3
1976 Gallatin 28-14
1977 Gallatin 17-14 (OT)
1978 Gallatin 38-7
1979 Gallatin 49-0
1980 Gallatin 37-25
1981 Gallatin 42-6
1982 Gallatin 41-22
1983 Gallatin 24-0
1984 Gallatin 14-3
1985 Gallatin 28-0
1986 Gallatin 28-6
1987 Gallatin 48-6
1988 Hendersonville 14-3
1989 Gallatin 21-0
1990 Gallatin 24-6
1991 Gallatin 17-7
1992 Gallatin 35-6
1993 Gallatin 42-0
1994 Gallatin 35-7
1995 Gallatin 14-7
1996 Gallatin 21-14
1997 Hendersonville 34-14
1998 Hendersonville 20-17 (0T)
1999 Hendersonville 21-0
2000 Hendersonville 31-14
2001 Hendersonville 13-6
*2001 Hendersonville 27-7
2002 Gallatin 17-0
2003 Gallatin 14-3
2004 Hendersonville 20-17
2005 Gallatin 24-0
2006 Gallatin 14-7
2007 Gallatin 34-13
2008 Hendersonville 24-21
2009 Hendersonville 31-0
2010 Hendersonville 22-19
* 2010 Hendersonville 34-14
2011 Gallatin 35-10
* 2011 Hendersonville 28-7
2012 Gallatin 24-20
2013 Gallatin 39-36
2014 Hendersonville 56-14
*TSSAA playoff game
Gallatin leads the series 40-17-1.
Beech-Station Camp Series
2007 Station Camp 17-10
2008 Beech 14-13
2009 Beech 34-10
2010 Beech 31-11
2011 Beech 25-17
* 2011 Beech 22-13
2012 Beech 41-7
2013 Beech 42-39
2014 Beech 26-14
*TSSAA playoff game
Beech leads series 8-1.