Class 5A Playoffs Top Games to Watch
Thursday, July 28th 2011, 5:54 pm
News On 6
Originally Published: Nov 11, 2010 11:50 AM CDTCorey DeMoss
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer
OKLAHOMA CITY – The high school state playoffs begin Friday, and Class 5A features interesting matchups between No. 2 and No. 3 seeds.
Because 5A is so top-heavy, the No. 1 teams will likely cruise through the first round. But every year there are unexpected outcomes in the first round, meaning there will likely be a surprise coming in one of the following Top 4 matchups of the first round:
1) Grove (7-3, 5-2) at McAlester (9-1, 6-1)
This is by far the most interesting matchup of the first round, featuring a strong No. 2 seed against the most talented No. 3. Looking at Grove’s record alone is misleading, because the Ridgerunners’ three losses came by a combined total of seven points. They lost by only three against both East Central and Coweta, and easily could have finished with the top spot in the district.
Meanwhile, McAlester destroyed the teams in its path during district play. The Buffaloes scored at least 42 points in four different district games and were undefeated going into the final week of the season, when they suffered a 49-18 blowout to district champ Booker T. Washington. The key to this game could be how well McAlester responds from its first loss. An angry Buffaloes team could go on a deep playoff run.
2) Deer Creek (7-3, 5-2) at Ardmore (6-4, 5-2)
Ardmore suffered three losses in its first four games, but persevered and turned things around for the rest of the season. The Tigers won six straight games before losing their season finale, and earned a No. 2 seed and a home game in the first round. While Ardmore is hosting, it will have a challenge on its hands against Deer Creek.
Deer Creek played in a tougher district, and made it through with losses only to Carl Albert and Guthrie. In their district games, the Antlers were dominant. In a four-game winning streak halfway through the season, Deer Creek won by an average score of 49-13.
3) Duncan (6-4, 5-2) at Carl Albert (8-2, 6-1)
These two teams are very familiar with one another, and Carl Albert has owned the rivalry. They have faced each other every year since 2006, and Duncan has been on the losing end every time. It is generally difficult to beat the same team twice in one season, and Carl Albert has never had to do so against the Demons. Emotion will be running high in this game, but the Titans appear to hold a talent advantage.
4) Bishop Kelley (5-5, 5-2) at Coweta (8-2, 6-1)
This also marks a rematch of a Week 3 game, which Coweta won 24-3. The Tigers went on to finish second in their district, but suffered some inconsistent play on offense at time. They scored only 14 points in a win over Tulsa Central and 18 points in another win against Grove. The Comets can put points on the board, and Coweta will need to play at a high level to beat the Comets for the second time this year.