During Week 7, St. Philip and Coldwater clinched league titles and can look forward to the postseason. Lakeview and Battle Creek Central are tied for first in their division and have title goals of their own. Other teams still have some work to do as they are fighting for a spot in the postseason.
So now we ask, what happened last week, what happens next?
And what does it mean?
Each week, the Enquirer’s Bill Broderick will break that down on Mondays, handing out some analysis on what all the results mean from the weekend of prep football and what to look for next.
In the city
St. Philip: St. Philip was facing an undefeated Waldron team that shared first place with the Tigers going into the game. But St. Philip treated Waldron like it has all the rest of the teams on its schedule, with a one-sided win, 55-16. With the victory, St. Philip clinched the Southern Michigan 8-Man Football League, for the school’s third title in a row.
Next: The season continues to get tougher the deeper No. 3-ranked St. Philip goes as it will go on the road to face a 6-1 Portland St. Patrick team. Portland St. Patrick’s lone loss came to Waldron in Week 3 and is coming of a 48-22 win over 4-3 Webberville last week. The undefeated Tigers then have their biggest game of the year in Week 9 against a Lawrence team that has knocked the Tigers out of the playoffs each of the last two years.
Lakeview: Lakeview climbed to 5-2 on the season with a 42-6 win over Loy Norrix. Is the fourth straight win since Lakeview started the year at 1-2. Four different players scored for Lakeview in the win, led by 161 yards and a score by Dre’On Kemp.
Next: Lakeview goes to 3-1 in the SMAC East, and climbs back into a tie for first-place with Battle Creek Central in the standings. Lakeview is looking for its third title in a row, but will go out of division in Week 8 with a road game at St. Joseph. The Spartans can clinch a share of the title with a win over Gull Lake in the final week of the regular season. This week, the Spartans are hoping to clinch a spot in the playoffs with a win over St. Joseph, putting the Spartans in the postseason for the fourth time in a row – a first for the program.
Battle Creek Central: BCC suffered a heartbreaking loss to Mattawan and fell to 3-4 on the year. The Bearcats had the ball in the final minutes, but could not get a game-winning score. BCC was alone in first place in the SMAC East, but the loss drops the Bearcats into a tie for first with Lakeview.
Next: BCC goes on the road to face a 3-4 Portage Northern team. With the Bearcats’ strength of schedule, BCC still has playoff hopes. If BCC can win out, with victories over Portage Northern and Loy Norrix, a 5-4 record may get the Bearcats in the playoffs for the first time since 2008. An early-season win over 5-2 Lakeview could garner enough computer points to put BCC in the running for a spot.
Harper Creek: Harper Creek ran into a team on a mission in undefeated Coldwater, falling to the Cardinals for the second year in a row, 40-14. The loss drops the Beavers to 3-4 on the season after two straight defeats.
Next: Harper Creek made the playoffs last season at 5-4, so still holds out hope that it can make the playoffs if the Beavers win out. However, Harper Creek has a resurgent Marshall team next on the schedule in a major rivalry game for both teams. Marshall is 6-1 under new coach Jason Stealy and is coming off a 49-0 win over Jackson Northwest.
Pennfield: Pennfield has won two straight to climb to 3-4 on the season, after a 20-3 win over Charlotte, showing an improvement over last year’s 2-7 campaign. Parris Bolden and Mike Davis each had over 100 yards rushing in the win for the Panthers.
Next: Things get tough the rest of the season for Pennfield with back-to-back games against teams that are usually gearing up for the playoffs this time of year and are doing again this season. The Panthers face Jackson Lumen Christi (5-2) this week and then Olivet (5-2) in the final week of the regular season.
Around the Area: Some area teams have opened up with impressive starts to the season.
Climax-Scotts: The Panthers stayed undefeated with a 57-0 win over Bellevue to finish the Southern Central Athletic Association league schedule undefeated. Climax-Scotts has four shutouts in a row and continues to be ranked in the state in Division 8. Climax-Scotts steps up in class this week with a road game at Class B Spring Lake.
Coldwater: Coldwater clinched a share of the Interstate 8 Conference with a win over Harper Creek. It was the first league title for Coldwater since 1986. The Cardinals remain undefeated and can get the title outright with a win against Charlotte this week.
Marshall: The Redhawks improve to 6-1 on the season with a one-sided 49-0 win over Jackson Northwest. Marshall clinched its first playoff spot since 2012 with a win last week and has rival Harper Creek next.
BCC at Portage Northern, Harper Creek at Marshall, Lakeview at St. Joseph, Lumen Christi at Pennfield, St. Philip at Portland St. Patrick, Athens at Reading, Bellevue at Pittsford, Bronson at Cassopolis, Climax-Scotts at Spring Lake, Charlotte at Coldwater, Colon at Camden-Frontier, Saugatuck at Delton Kellogg, Galesburg-Augusta at Martin, Niles at Gull Lake, Union City at Homer, Maple Valley at Bark River, Portland at Olivet, Concord at Quincy, Michigan Lutheran at Tekonsha