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Hancock County, HHC & MIFC football sectional pairings

October 8, 2012
By Andrew Smith of Hancock County Sports

Class 4A, Sectional 13
Defending champion: Pendleton Heights
Sagarin favorite: Mt. Vernon
Greenfield-Central (3-5) at Muncie Central (2-6)
Delta (5-3) at Frankfort (3-5)
Muncie South (5-2) at Pendleton Heights (6-2)
Mt. Vernon (7-1) at New Palestine (3-5)

Analysis: Mt. Vernon is a prohibitive favorite, but that doesn't mean a lot when you have five schools from the same conference who will likely be facing potential rematches. MV is No. 1 in Class 4A in scoring (44.8), No. 6 in defense (14.6) and No. 2 in win margin (30.3). It's likely the road to the sectional title goes through the Hoosier Heritage Conference -- and the winner will likely have to beat at least two HHC teams along the way. MV has blown through virtually everyone on both sides of the ball -- the closest game since Week 2 has been a 35-0 victory over Delta. Beyond that, Muncie South has been a surprise this season. Pendleton Heights has a solid offense with Jon Furrow delivering things, and the Arabians have won two straight sectional titles.

Looking at the draw, we have the all-HHC matchup in MV-NP, who will get a preview on Friday night at Kelso Stadium. The two teams will play in the sectional for the first time since 2007. They're meeting Friday night, so we'll get a preview. Delta has to feel like it has the best draw, as MV/Muncie South/PH are all in the other half. Frankfort is an unknown quantity, but Delta beat G-C 48-8 in Week 3. G-C has to be happy with its draw, too. MV will have to earn its title, but the Marauders' first-team has outscored sectional teams 146-7 so far.
Second-round hosts: Mt. Vernon and Delta would host regardless. Frankfort would travel to G-C, would host Muncie Central. NP would travel to Muncie South, would host Pendleton Heights.
Third round:
The team that has played the most road games hosts. If they've played the same number of road games, the bottom-bracket team hosts.
The team you want to draw:
Muncie Central. They've been 2-6 in the North Central Conference. The two wins are against 1-7 Logansport and New Castle.
The team you want to avoid: Obviously, Mt. Vernon is the favorite. Delta is a pretty solid team with WR Jalen Robinson and two strong running backs in Joe Spegal and Mason Bechdolt. You want to avoid the trip to Frankfort -- the Hot Dogs have lost five straight games, but has been competitive in the strong Sagamore conference.

Class A, Sectional 37
Defending champion:
Sagarin favorite: Scecina
Scecina (5-3) at Cambridge City Lincoln (6-2)
Knightstown (5-3) at Indiana Deaf (1-7)
Hagerstown (8-0) at Eastern Hancock (3-5)
Tri (0-8) at Northeastern (4-4)
Analysis: This is a loaded sectional, with three of Sagarin's top 10 teams in Scecina (#2), Hagerstown (#6) and Knightstown (#10). Don't be deceived by Scecina's record -- the Crusaders were the Class A runners-up last year and have played a loaded schedule -- the second-toughest in Class A. Knightstown has been scoring a ton of points -- its 46.25 average is fifth-most in Class A. Hagerstown (39.9 ppg) is seventh-most. Also, don't discount EH -- the Royals have been competitive against a brutal schedule. EH is actually rated ahead of 6-2 Cambridge City Lincoln in the Sagarin ratings, and the Royals have some dynamic players in QB Logan Splater, 1,000-yard rusher Spencer Gilbert and wideouts Cooper Henderson and Derrik Noel. Interestingly, the Royals are also extremely young.

Looking at the draw, the dynamite first-round matchup is Hagerstown-EH, with Scecina-CCL in the other half of the bracket. Knightstown likely got the best first-round draw, although the Hagerstown-EH winner would be a heavy favorite in the second-round game. It's going to be a tough road for the Royals, but having homefield against Hagerstown is a good start. Hagerstown would have to think it has the best draw so far, with Scecina, CCL and Knightstown all in the other half of the draw.
First-round rematches: Northeastern beat Tri 42-14 on Sept. 14.
Second round:
Knightstown & Tri host regardless. Indiana Deaf would host CCL, travel to Scecina. Northeastern would host EH, travel to Hagerstown.
Third round:
The team that has played the most road games hosts. If both teams have played the same number of road games, then the bottom-bracket team will host.
The team you want to draw:
Obviously, the Deaf School (ranked last in the state by Sagarin) or Tri (which has lost 29 straight games).
The team you want to avoid: The three Top 10 Sagarin teams. Outside of that, Eastern Hancock. Whoever wins this sectional will have survived it.

Other HHC & MIFC sectionals
Class 4A, Sectional 15 (Shelbyville)
Shelbyville (4-4) at Richmond (6-2)
New Castle (1-7) at Franklin County (4-4)
Columbus East (8-0) at East Central (7-1)
South Dearborn (0-8) at Connersville (5-3)

Class 3A, Sectional 19 (Yorktown)
Peru (3-5) at Eastbrook (5-3)
Yorktown (3-5) at Bellmont (4-4)
Mississinewa (6-2) at Blackford (0-8)
Maconaquah (2-6) at Western (4-4)

Class 3A, Sectional 22 (Indian Creek, Rushville)
Batesville (4-4) at Edgewood (1-7)
Greensburg (6-2) at Brown County (1-7)
Howe (2-3) at Beech Grove (3-5)
Rushville (1-7) at Indian Creek (6-2)

Class A, Sectional 39 (Milan, North Decatur, South Decatur)
South Decatur (3-5) bye
Lutheran (4-4) at West Washington (5-3)
Milan (5-3) at Edinburgh (4-4)
North Decatur (6-2) at Springs Valley (3-5)

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