1. What I noticed: Playoff spots are going fast
The Star-Telegram regularly covers 10 districts in Class 6A, 5A and 4A, which equals 40 playoff spots. By our count, 21 teams, give or take a couple, have clinched a playoff berth. They include Haltom, Azle and Southlake Carroll, which all lead their district standings.
The one district that doesn’t seem to have any playoff clinchers just yet is 7-6A. Five teams are separated by two games with two weeks left. Right now in the driver’s seat are Mansfield Lake Ridge, DeSoto and Cedar Hill, who are 4-1, while Summit and South Grand Prairie are 3-2. SGP holds the tiebreaker with Summit while Lake Ridge beat DeSoto earlier this season. DeSoto and Cedar Hill still have to play.
The bottom of 5-6A is getting crowded too with three teams fighting for two spots. Fossil Ridge and Keller are 3-2 while Eaton is 2-3.
Arlington Martin, Euless Trinity, Mansfield Legacy and Timberview are a few teams that can clinch in Week 10.
2. Biggest Upset: Arlington Heights 17, Crowley 14
The Yellowjackets scored with 31 seconds left to shock the Eagles. Heights improved to 5-3 but more importantly, 4-2 in District 3-5A Division I. Deontre Jones connected with Myles Brawley for a 29-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-15.
They own a 1-game lead for fourth place over Brewer, which beat Heights by four earlier in the year.
3. Best Win: Granbury 74, Chisholm Trail 28
Joshua Franklin made 12 catches for 173 yards and 2 TDs. It was the most points by the Pirates in the past 15 seasons.
4. Best Offensive Performance
QB Ken Seals (Weatherford): The top 2020 pro-style QB in the state threw for 367 yards on 17 of 26 passing and 4 TDs as the Kangaroos kept their playoff hopes alive with a 42-23 over Abilene.
RB Jordan Williams (Lamar): The Vikings star back dominated the Sam Houston defense with 285 yards on 18 carries. He scored four times as Lamar improved to 8-0.
WR Chance Luper (FW Christian): Luper made the most of his four catches vs. Frisco Legacy with 228 yards receiving and 3 TDs as the Cardinals won 41-13.
5. Best Defensive Performance: Timothy Drysdale, Grapevine
Drysdale helped the Mustangs take home the “Battle of the Red Rail” with a 59-20 win over Colleyville Heritage. The senior linebacker scored TDs on a 45-yard pick-six and 93-yard fumble return to go along with his 10 tackles. Drysdale is a favorite to win all-area defensive player of the year as he also returned two picks for scores earlier this season vs. Northwest while returning a third to the 1-yard line.
1. Can Weatherford make the playoffs? The Kangaroos have had their struggles since last making the postseason in 2007. They won 20 games in the previous 10 seasons, so the 3-5 record this season is already above their average. A win in Week 10 over Richland would be huge. The two teams are 1-3 and a game back of Abilene, who the Kangraroos have the edge over. Weatherford finishes with L.D. Bell. while Abilene and Richland still have Euless Trinity on the schedule.
2. Big test for Arlington Lamar. The Vikings (8-0) have one of the toughest remaining schedules of any unbeaten team in the Fort Worth area. They get Bowie and fellow unbeaten Arlington to finish out the regular season. A win by both Lamar and Arlington would set up a undefeated district championship in Week 11. History is on Lamar’s side in the Bowie series as the Vikings are 26-8 all-time vs. the Volunteers, including wins in three of the past four contests. Lamar is trying for its first 9-0 start since 2003.
3. District 6-4A Division I will be won in Fort Worth on Thursday when Kennedale plays Benbrook. The last time Kennedale wasn’t a district champ came in 2011. The Wildcats have won 38-straight district contests with their last loss coming Oct. 14, 2011. The Bobcats are 7-1 in just their third varsity season. This should be a quick game as both teams love the run. They enter with a combined 600 yards rushing per game. This is Kennedale’s final game before playoffs while Benbrook travels to Castleberry in Week 11.
4. Can Nolan Catholic return the favor? The Vikings travel to All Saints on Friday night and look to avenge last season’s early playoff elimination when the Saints came to Nolan and won by six touchdowns. Keep an eye on 4-star Notre Dame commit NaNa Osafo-Mensah as he tries to limit the Saints’ offensive attack.
5. Azle and Burleson Centennial finish the season in Week 10. Both the Hornets and Spartans are playoff bound and wrap up the regular season against Saginaw and Arlington Seguin. Both teams can push their record to 9-1 and earn themselves a nice bye week before starting a postseason run.