For Charlestown High School, the IHSAA blind draw couldn’t have been much tougher.
In the first round of the Class 3-A, Sectional 31 tournament on Oct. 23, the Pirates (6-2) will play host to one of the top programs in all of Southern Indiana in No. 6-ranked Heritage Hills (7-1).
“They lost a lot from last year but they’ve got a good football program,” Charlestown coach Jason Hawkins said of the Patriots. “We know they’ll be well-coached, and I don’t think we’ve ever beaten them.”
Since the mid-1990s, Charlestown and Heritage Hills have faced off four times – all in postseason play – and the Patriots have won all four by an average of 28 points.
Since 1994, Heritage Hills is 228-41.
Since a 2-2 start, Hawkins said the Pirates, winners of two of their last three sectionals, will likely bring a five-game winning streak to the table against Heritage Hills.
“Offensively, we’re getting a lot more kids involved,” Hawkins said. “I think you’ve got seven teams (in the sectional) that could be ranked in the top 20. It’s going to be three tough games for whoever wins it.”
In top half of the draw, No. 8 North Harrison (8-0) will travel to Southridge (6-2), and coach Mark Williamson said the Cougars are only concerned about their last regular-season game against Paoli Friday.
“I can promise you one thing,” Williamson said. “Southridge will not be mentioned one time this week. We will be focused on winning week nine. That will be our only focus.”
Meanwhile, the Cougars are engineering their best regular season in school history while claiming their first-ever Mid-Southern Conference title. They are led by powerful senior running backs Sam Best and Austin Nevil. The two have combined for nearly 2,500 yards so far.
In Class 4-A, Silver Creek (4-4) will visit Madison (0-8) in the first round of Sectional 23, which includes No. 5 East Central (7-1) and No. 9 Shelbyville (7-1) in the bottom half of the bracket.
In Class 2-A, Eastern Pekin (2-6) will visit Clarksville (0-8) in Sectional 40. In the bottom half of the same sectional, Crawford County (1-7) will visit Providence (2-6). In the second round, No. 1 Mater Dei certainly will be waiting for the Providence-Crawford County winner.
In Class A, Perry Central (7-1) will travel to Wood Memorial (0-8) in Sectional 48. The Commodores likely would face third-ranked Linton-Stockton in the second round.
Over in Sectional 47, No. 10 West Washington (8-0) drew a bye and will face the South Decatur (5-3)-Eastern Greene (6-2) winner in the second round. Springs Valley (4-4) drew opposite West Washington and will travel to North Decatur (5-3) in the first round.
Sectional Pairings around Southern Indiana
Class A, Sectional 47: West Washington (8-0)-bye; South Decatur (5-3) at Eastern Greene (6-2); Oldenburg Academy (5-3) at Edinburgh (2-6); Springs Valley (4-4) at North Decatur (5-3).
Class A, Sectional 48: Tell City (1-7) at Linton-Stockton (7-1); Perry Central (7-1) at Wood Memorial (0-8); North Daviess (3-5) at Tecumseh (3-5); North Knox (3-5) at North Central (5-3).
Class 2-A, Sectional 39: Mitchell (2-6) at Monrovia (7-1); Southmont (2-6) at South Vermillion (2-6); Paoli (2-6) at Cascade (4-4); North Putnam (7-1) at Cloverdale (1-7).
Class 2-A, Sectional 40: North Posey (2-6) at Forest Park (4-4); Eastern Pekin (2-6) at Clarksville (0-8); South Spencer (2-6) at Mater Dei (8-0), Crawford County (1-7) at Providence (2-6).
Class 3-A, Sectional 31: Corydon (5-3) at Brown County (1-7); North Harrison (8-0) at Southridge (6-2); Salem (3-5) at Brownstown (6-2); Heritage Hills (7-1) at Charlestown (6-2).
Class 4-A, Sectional 23: Silver Creek (4-4) at Madison (0-8); Franklin County (5-3) at Seymour (2-6); East Central (7-1) at South Dearborn (3-5); Shelbyville (7-1) at Jennings County (6-2).