PREBLE COUNTY — With three weeks left in the high school football season league races and the postseason playoff picture are starting to take shape.
The top 16 teams in each regional qualify for the postseason, with the top eight teams hosting first round games.
Currently, Preble Shawnee (5-1) is 8th in the OHSAA Division V, Region 20 rankings and have all but secured a playoff spot.
In Division IV, Region 16, Eaton (4-3) is 13th and will most likely need to win two of its final three games to reach the playoffs. If the Eagles win all three, they will have an outside chance of hosting a first-round game. A 5-5 record puts them on the bubble.
In Division VI, Region 24, National Trail (5-2) is ninth and is projected to make the playoffs regardless of what happens over the final three weeks.
Also in Region 24, Twin Valley South (3-4) is clinging to the final spot at No. 16. The Panthers are projected to make the playoffs if they finish at least 5-5.
In Division VII, Regional 28, Tri-County North (1-6) is tied for 19th and will most likely need to win two of its final three to reach the playoffs.
Arrows move to top of WOAC
CAMDEN – Preble Shawnee won its third straight game dominating Tri-County North 54-13 in a Western Ohio Athletic Conference game on Thursday, Sept. 29.
Freshman quarterback Brody Morton threw for 330 yards and four touchdowns as the Arrows moved to 5-1 overall and 4-1 in the WOAC.
Morton connected with Sayge Stephenson (7 catches, 243 yards) on all four TD’s.
The duo hooked up on a 49 yard score in the first quarter to put Shawnee up 7-0.
Grady Hutchinson then made it a 14-3 with a 10-yard TD run early in the second quarter.
Morton and Stephenson added two more scores in the second on plays of 35- and 49-yards for a 26-7 lead.
North’s lone first half score was sandwiched in between those two scores. The Panthers scored on a 39-yard TD pass from Logan Flory to Garrett Hutchinson.
Brayden Doran (8 carries, 101 yards) capped the first half scoring with a 9-yard touchdown run for a 33-7 lead.
The Arrows extended their lead to 40-7 on a Doran 24-yard TD run early in the third.
North responded by returning the ensuing kickoff 78 yards for a touchdown to make it a 40-13 game.
Stephenson added his fourth score of the game on an 8-yard run to make it 47-13.
Shawnee’s final score of the game came on a 64-yard strike from Morton to Stephenson.
Shawnee is scheduled to travel to Arcanum on Friday, Oct. 7.
North is scheduled to play at Ansonia (6-1, 4-1 WOAC).
Eagles suffer 2nd SWBL loss
EATON – Host Eaton had trouble containing Brookville’s running attack in the second half as the Blue Devils pulled away for a 40-22 Southwestern Buckeye League win.
Eaton led 14-7 until late in the first half, but Brookville scored 33 straight points to drop the Eagles to 4-3 overall and 2-2 in the SWBL.
Danny Caldwell put the Eagles up 7-0 to cap an impressive opening drive.
In the second, Brookville scored on a 2-yard run by Tim Davis, who rushed for 92 of the Blue Devils 259 yards.
Eaton responded with an 80-yard TD pass from Brock Ebright to Leslie Orr to regain the lead 14-7.
From there it was all Brookville.
The Blue Devils scored a late second quarter touchdown to tie the game 14-14. A third quarter score gave Brookville its first lead of the game, 21-14.
In the fourth, Brookville added three more scores including a 75-yard interception return.
Eaton’s final score was a 6-yard TD pass from Ebright to Chris Atkins.
Eaton is scheduled to travel to Carlisle on Friday
Trail suffers first WOAC loss
NEW PARIS – After taking an early 7-0 lead National Trail struggled to contain visiting Ansonia the rest of the game as the Blazers suffered their first WOAC setback of the season, falling 44-17.
Burgan Hoffman threw for 96 yard and two touchdowns to lead Trail.
Jamison Watts caught a 25-TD pass from Hoffman to get the scoring started for Trail
The Tigers then grabbed the lead on a 65-yard TD pass and a successful 2-point conversion for an 8-7 lead.
The Tigers pushed their lead to 16-7 before Trail’s Drew Dewitt added a 32-yard field goal to make it 16-10 game at halftime.
Ansonia extended its lead to 30-10 in the third, before Watts caught his second TD pass from Hoffman to make it 30-17.
The Tigers added two fourth quarter scores for the final marking.
Trail is scheduled to travel to Mississinawa Valley on Friday.
South mauls Dixie, 62-0
NEW LEBANON – Twin Valley South jumped out to a 56-0 halftime lead en route to a 62-0 win over Dixie.
South is scheduled to host Clermont Northeastern in a non-conference matchup on Friday.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4061 and follow on Twitter @emowenjr.