We are breaking down every area sectional this week as the postseason kicks off this Friday for Classes 1A to 4A.
First up is Sectional 44.
Fremont (3-6) at South Adams (7-2)
Adams Central (9-0) at Southwood (7-2)
North Miami (4-5) at Madison-Grant (7-2)
Northfield (4-5) at Southern Wells (0-9)
ADAMS CENTRAL (9-0)
The belief is that in Class 1A there is Lutheran and Adams Central, then everyone else. The Flying Jets have dominated so far this season, helping perpetuate the thinking that the two teams that met in last year’s state championship game are destined for a rematch.
Coach Michael Mosser’s squad has been nothing short of dominant so far, winning games by an average of 30 points. The rushing attack is sound with a multitude of runners, while Ryan Black at quarterback has the talent to sling the ball when he needs to in a quest to keep defenses honest.
Defensively, AC has held six of its nine opponents to eight points or less.
While there are some solid teams in this field, no one measures up to the Flying Jets.
SOUTH ADAMS (7-2)
Three years ago, an undefeated Starfires squad with state title aspirations was upset by rival Adams Central in the regional round of the tournament. Earlier that year, SA had crushed the Flying Jets by 28 points.
Can South Adams play spoiler this year for AC?
There is doubt that the Starfires can score against the Flying Jets – they put up 20 in their regular-season meeting. n the two-time defending sectional champions find some offense in a rematch with Monroe Central?
That is what the Starfires will need to do if both teams are victorious in the first round. The question is, can the SA defense play well enough to give the team a shot?
When AC beat South Adams in 2019 in the playoffs, it was able to defend the passing attack of the Starfires and took them completely out of sorts. Will SA be able to limit the run game in a rematch? That’s the key.
All due respect to the Knights, this is a team that last year lost 56-0 in the playoffs to Adams Central.
Now, Southwood is better this year and are riding a seven-game winning streak heading into Friday’s showdown with Adams Central.
Senior quarterback Cole Winer will be the key, having thrown for 1,174 yards and 16 touchdowns on the year. He has a cadre of wide receivers who can make plays, and Southwood will need a lot of ’em to hang this week.
Still, a defense that is allowing over 22 points per game doesn’t strike Blitz as a squad that can beat the Flying Jets.
The Argylls very well could reach the sectional final with how the draw came out. No matter what happens in the playoffs, this is the best Madison-Grant team in a decade, which means something in Grant County but doesn’t matter much in this field.
Tanner Brooks is the player to watch, especially after he rushed for a school-record 373 yards and seven touchdowns in M-G’s Week 9 rout of Alexandria.
Brooks should be able to run roughshod over the first two weeks of sectional play, but it will be tough going against whomever emerges from the top half of the bracket.
NORTH MIAMI (4-5)
How does North Miami win? By running the ball.
How does North Miami lose? By not being able to run the ball.
That’s what it comes down to for the Warriors, who have thrown just 30 total passes all year while rushing for 2,505 yards and 25 scores.
Senior Austin Smith is the centerpiece to the run game, with 1,449 yards and 16 scores on the ground.
The Norse got the best draw of the sectional and will take on winless Southern Wells to open this week.
Quarterback Mason Fisher has thrown for 11 touchdowns and rushed for 14 more, making him the key for Northfield entering the playoffs.
Senior wideout Eli Kroh is also one to watch, with close to a third of his receptions going for touchdowns, of which he has seven on the year.
The Eagles have not beaten a team not named Southern Wells in the postseason since way back in 2011.
Considering Fremont has to go to Berne and take on South Adams in Week 10, there isn’t much there to think that skid will not continue.
SOUTHERN WELLS (0-9)
The Raiders are 288th out of 316 teams in the Indiana high school football Sagain Ratings.
That’s all I got.
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