Three of the region’s teams — the No. 8 Oakman Wildcats (7-1), Lamar County Bulldogs and Aliceville Yellow Jackets are tied for first place with equal 5-1 records — with tonight’s games being critical in determining a champion and postseason fates.
For Oakman, the scenario would involve a win over the Cold Springs Eagles (5-3, 3-3) at Hosea Collins Field and a Lamar County loss to Hale County to secure the region’s top spot, with the 28-27 win over Aliceville last week serving as the tie breaker. A victory from all three of the front-runners could plunge the region into further chaos and result in the tie being broken by Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) mandated guidelines.
The Eagles, a far cry from a team who entered 2012 on a 35-game losing streak, have flourished under coach Rodney Elliott and will be looking to spoil the Wildcats’ chances of a second-consecutive region championship.
Oakman holds a 19-7 edge in the overall series and shutout Cold Springs last year, 28-0.
Vinemont (3-5) at Winston County (3-5)
With both Winston County and Vinemont eliminated from playoff contention, the goal for each will be to end the year with a 5-5 season.
The Yellow Jackets are on a two-game losing streak after dropping successive contests to region front-runners Hamilton, 42-7 and Hanceville, 41-35.
Vinemont enters the matchup on a losing streak of its own after falling in the last five contests.
The Eagles were shutout by Winfield last week, 35-0.
The overall series between the teams is tied at 6-6, with Vinemont topping Winston County last year, 47-20.
Hanceville (7-1) at Cordova (2-6)
After securing their first region win of the year in a 28-22 victory over Danville, the Blue Devils fell to the Good Hope Raiders last week, 35-7 — crushing Cordova’s hopes of not suffering back-to-back losing seasons.
Hanceville enters tonight’s matchup in a three-way battle with Hamilton and Good Hope for the top spot in Region 7. The Bulldogs routed Danville last week, 41-7.
The series between Cordova and Hanceville is tied at 2-2, with the Bulldogs winning last year’s meeting, 39-22.
Hubbertville (6-2) at Lynn (2-6)
In pursuit of the state’s total offensive yards record, Lynn’s Brody Meeks enters tonight’s contest with Hubbertville needing just 512 yards to surpass the current mark held by Zach Smith of Susan Moore.
He’ll have his first of two remaining opportunities tonight to break the record against the team Meeks made his varsity quarterbacking debut against in 2009, the Hubbertville Lions.
The Lions, one of three 4-2 teams in the region, are surrendering over 22 points a game on defense, but gave up a combined 110 points in contests to No. 1 Pickens County and No. 10 Marion County.
The Bears hold a 20-17 edge in the overall series, with the Lions winning last year, 33-18.
Southeastern (1-6) at Sumiton Christian (2-5)
The Eagles, who have been outscored 178-51 in their last four games, will look for their third win of the season as they host the Southeastern Mustangs tonight at Sumiton Christian.
Sumiton Christian’s two wins this year came against Shades Mountain Christian, 40-13 and Meek, 25-24.
The contest was moved to Sumiton due to Southeastern not having a home field to play on.
Southeastern, in its second year of play, won its first game as a program in week five over Holy Spirit, 34-6.
The Eagles won the first meeting between the teams last season, 35-0.
Meek (2-6) at Shades Mountain Christian (1-6)
The Tigers broke a five-game losing skid last week in a 36-13 win over Southeastern — a bright spot after what has been a difficult year in Arley.
The Eagles lone win this season came against the Southeastern Mustangs, 21-14, in week six.
Meek won the only meeting between the teams last year, 24-21.
Parrish (1-7) at South Lamar (2-6)
Injuries and attrition have wracked the Tornadoes in coach Sam McCorkle’s first season, with Parrish securing their only win of the year against Berry, 28-12, in week four.
South Lamar has posted two wins this season after a winless 2012, beating Lynn 42-19 and Class 3A Central Coosa, 14-0.
South Lamar leads the series, 5-4, with Parrish winning last year’s meeting, 48-22.