The Falcons moved to 8-0 for the season with their win on Friday over Big Valley Christian. Regardless of how they finish in their last two games the Falcons will have enough wins to get into the six-team Division V bracket as an at-large team.
The Falcons are now in the race for the Central California Athletic Alliance championship. They play Elliot Christian (7-1, 2-1 CCAA) on Saturday at Kimball High, and play Sierra Ridge/Rite of Passage (4-3, 3-0 CCAA), on Friday, Nov. 4, at West High.
Each team still has a chance to win the league title. Elliot Christian is also in good position to make the Division VI bracket as an at-large team, while Sierra Ridge/ROP would need a couple more wins to get in as an at-large team.
As of last week the Falcons were also seventh in Cal Hi Sports’ CIF State Football bowl rankings for Division IV North. A team must win its section championship to be invited to a CIF bowl game. Other Sac-Joaquin Section teams in that division are Central Catholic of Modesto (6-2), ranked first; LeGrand (8-0), ranked second; and Bradshaw Christian of Sacramento (7-1), ranked fourth.
The Sac-Joaquin Section sends the top two teams from each league to playoffs. Teams that finish 6-4 or better also have a chance to make one of the six division brackets as at-large teams, as long as two of those wins are in league play. Teams with 5-5 records aren’t likely to get in unless they are league champions or runners-up.
West High, Stagg and McNair, all at 2-1 in the Tri-City Athletic League, are now in a three-way tie for second in league, with St. Mary’s in first at 3-0 in the TCAL. This week’s games include Stagg at West and McNair at St. Mary’s.
At 4-4 overall, West needs two wins and a second-place finish to make playoffs as one of 16 Division I teams. Both St. Mary’s (7-1) and Stagg (6-2) are in favorable position to make the 16-team Division II bracket regardless of what happens in the last two games, and McNair (5-3) would need at least one win to have a chance to get in as an at-large team.
Tracy High’s Bulldogs can’t be ruled out. Tracy, Chavez and Bear Creek, all at 1-2 in the SJAA, each have a chance to move into a tie for second place if they win out, and either Lincoln or Lodi, tied for first at 3-0 in league, lose their last two games. The section then reverts to a point-differential tiebreaker to decide which team is the number-two seed from the league. As of Week 8, Lincoln, at 7-1 overall, is the only SJAA team that could get in as an at-large team.
Kimball High at 2-6 overall, 1-4 in the Valley Oak League, is out of the playoff picture. VOL rivals Oakdale and Manteca are both 8-0 for the season and tied for first in the league, and are the top Division III teams. Sonora, at 4-1 in the VOL, 6-2 overall, is the only other team that could challenge for first or second place, and also has a good chance to get in as an at-large team.