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Teams fight for post-season dreams

Region races are becoming clearer, but there is still some work to be done by county team as the playoffs approach. Red Bay and Russellville are playoff-bound, while Phil Campbell and Vina still each have a shot at a low seed in post-season play.

PHIL CAMPBELL

Phil Campbell (3-4; 1-3) will host East Lawrence (3-4; 1-3) Thursday night. The Bobcats have suffered two big losses in a row – to Westminster Christian and Lauderdale County – by a combined score of 108-6. 

Phil Campbell must beat the Eagles and Colbert Heights to have a chance at the playoffs. 

East Lawrence sets up well for the Bobcats to take that first step: The Eagles lost to Clements 26-13 and Lexington 28-14, and they struggled to beat a weak Hatton team 9-7.

RED BAY

Red Bay (7-0; 4-0) appears to be on its way to a region championship. The only teams standing in the Tigers’ way are Tanner and Tharptown. 

Tanner is not the team it has been in the past and shouldn’t pose much of a threat to the Tigers, especially at home. Tanner (1-4; 1-3) has lost its past two games: to Hatton 46-13 and Addison 45-24. Tanner’s only win came against Tharptown a few weeks ago, 39-3.

RUSSELLVILLE

Russellville (6-1; 4-1) is another team on its way to the playoffs. 

An upset loss to the Hamilton Aggies Friday night, however, put the Golden Tigers in danger of falling to third in the region and having to go on the road in the first round of the playoffs. 

Russellville will host the top-ranked team in 5A Friday night, Jasper (7-0; 5-0). If the Golden Tigers are going to cause an upset of their own, they will have to play a near-perfect game. 

Jasper has been outstanding so far this year, averaging 50 points per game and giving up 5.4 points per game.

THARPTOWN

Tharptown (1-5; 0-4) is in almost a no-win situation. The Wildcats are in arguably the toughest 2A region in the state, and since their season-opening win at Shoals Christian, they have been outscored 183-10. 

The Wildcats’ two remaining region games are against the two best teams in the region – Addison and Red Bay.

VINA

Vina (2-5; 2-2) still has playoff hopes in front of them. 

The Red Devils travel to Shoals Christian Friday (1-7; 1-3) night. The Flame picked up their first win last week at Cherokee 34-20. 

Since rolling off two straight region win against Phillips and Cherokee, Vina has been shut out in three straight games 154-0 by Phil Campbell, Mars Hill and Waterloo. 

All three remaining games on Vina’s schedule are winnable, including two region games to get in the playoffs.