Meaningful games remain
Though all region games have been played, four contests involving local teams this Friday will have implications on the playoff futures of three local teams.
Jemison, Bibb County High and Calera sit tied for first place in Class 4A, Region 3. Because of the addition this year of an unusual tiebreaker (see “Jemison jobbed…” below), 6-3 Calera will win the region over 7-2 Jemison and 8-1 Bibb County unless Jemison defeats Class 5A No. 4 Shelby County High and Bibb loses to Chilton County High.
If this happens, a coin toss will be used to determine the region champion. If Calera wins the region, Jemison will be a No. 3 seed and travel in the first round of the playoffs on Nov. 7. If Bibb is the region champ, Jemison would be the No. 2 seed.
The same tiebreaker will likely decide Class 1A, Region 3, home to local squads Billingsley and Maplesville.
Linden is the region champion here, and the Bears and Red Devils are tied with Holy Spirit for second place.
Maplesville needs a Billingsley win against Class 4A Dallas County High combined with a Holy Spirit loss at West Blocton. A Billingsley loss combined with a Holy Spirit win would give the region to the Bears, but coach Kevin LeSueur said that won’t change how his team approaches its game.
“We’re going to play to win,” LeSueur said.
Holy Spirit can’t win the region without a coin flip, which will be necessary in the event of any scenario in addition to the ones outlined above.
“It’s a sickening feeling to know all your work in August is coming down to the flip of a coin,” LeSueur said. “But I’ll tell you one thing, you take our fourth place team – whether it’s us or Maplesville or Holy Spirit – and they’ll beat anybody else’s fourth place team.”
But the squads are at a disadvantage because they can’t begin preparation for a playoff team because they don’t yet know who to prepare for.
“This makes it hard,” LeSueur said.