KF, NSA look for playoff long shots

Published 10:16 pm Thursday, October 30, 2008

Grassfield (6-3, 5-3) at King’s Fork (4-5, 3-5) – 7 p.m.

Last year – King’s Fork 22-9

Grassfield, after a 1-9 inaugural season in which its win was thanks to a forfeit, has wrapped up a Division 5 playoff spot in its second season.

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King’s Fork’s playoff hopes took a major blow against Great Bridge’s passing attack last Friday night in a 38-17 result. Other than a 46-0 game over Nansemond River, King’s Fork’s managed more than 20 points in two games this season. Grassfield’s defense has been the key reason for its surprising surge.

In 12th place in the Div. 5 power ratings, the Bulldogs are mathematically alive, but need a win and lots of help.

Lakeland (3-6, 3-5) at Oscar Smith (9-0, 8-0) – 7 p.m.

Last year – Oscar Smith 49-13

Lakeland’s offense has taken a hit without starting running back Cedric Johnson for the last two games. A couple weeks ago, after Lakeland’s wins against King’s Fork and Nansemond River, there was hope this finale against the defending district champs would be an opportunity for a huge upset and a playoff spot. Now the Cavaliers only have the huge upset to play for.

Oscar Smith’s quarterback Phillip Sims needs 57 yards to get to 2,000 passing yards for the season. The Tigers have their fifth straight Southeastern District title clinched.

Great Bridge (5-4, 4-4) at Nansemond River (1-8, 0-8) – 7 p.m.

Last year – Great Bridge 38-0

Great Bridge is barely alive in the Div. 5 playoff chase as the Wildcats need a win, four other teams around the Eastern Region to lose and then a lot of calculators to advance.

The Warriors are looking to avoid a winless district season. Lamont Brown has carried for 743 yards as a freshman. Throughout the grinding Southeastern District season, Brown’s been the only steady source of offense for the Warriors.

Nansemond-Suffolk (4-5, 3-1) at Hampton Roads (3-5, 1-3) – 7 p.m.

Last year – Nansemond-Suffolk 41-6

The Saints are sixth in the VIS Div. 2 ratings with Virginia Episcopal in fourth and Blue Ridge in fifth. The top four in the division reach the state playoffs.

Va. Episcopal plays undefeated, Div. 1 Liberty Christian while Blue Ridge meets No. 2 St. Anne’s-Belfield on Friday. It’s feasible NSA could win while the two schools the Saints need to overtake lose, but will that be enough for the power ratings math to work in NSA’s favor?

Hampton Roads has lost three straight games and its only conference win came against 0-9 Greenbrier Christian. Last year, NSA’s Chris Skeeter rushed for 332 yards and four touchdowns against the Navigators.