1. L.C. Bird (10-0)
The Skyhawks ran the table this year, finishing the regular season undefeated for the sixth time in seven years.
The defense was, in a word, dominating. L.C. Bird’s defensive team allowed just 19 points all season. Just seven of those points were scored against the first team. Against the run game, they were dominant, allowing just 42 yards on the season.
Cruising through the first half of the season which included playoff teams such as Meadowbrook, Thomas Dale, Manchester and Monacan, L.C. Bird defeated those teams by an average margin of about 33 points. Overall, the Skyhawks pitched seven defensive shutouts.
Based on seeding projections, it appears that the Skyhawks have dropped down to a #3 seed in the 5A South playoff race and they look to face Matoaca (7-3) at home for the first round of the playoffs this Friday at home.
Regular Season Offensive MVP: RB J.B. Wright
Regular Season Defensive MVP: LB Rayshard Ashby
2. Monacan (9-1)
The Chiefs enjoyed a bye week to end the regular season and discovered their playoff fate as the three seed in the 4A South. They project to get a match-up with Dinwiddie in the first round at home.
Monacan has been on a roll since quarterback Syour Fludd came back, winning five straight games. Fludd’s weapons have allowed a balanced offense that’s been led by spark plug and running back Khalik Hamlin.
The match-up with Dinwiddie is a tale of two teams that are pretty similar. Both have dynamic running backs (Monacan’s Hamlin, DeAndre Williams and Diontae Bruce) and Dinwiddie has James Lyons, Zyan Sturdivant and a solid running quarterback in Bryce Witt.
Both teams have defenses that are capable of being dominant at times, and overall are evenly matched. It should be a great contest.
Regular Season Offensive MVP: QB Syour Fludd
Regular Season Defensive MVP: DB Khalik Hamlin
3. Hopewell (8-2)
The Blue Devils came into the season expecting that they had a good shot to contend in the 3A East come postseason time. They’ll go in as the #1 seed in the playoffs.
Hopewell dropped just two games this season, and those were 4A teams in Hanover and Dinwiddie. Coach Ricky Irby says those are games he’d like to play again, but it’s time for the postseason.
Cameren Hill has been a leader and a rock on offense for the Blue Devils posing a dual threat with his arm and his legs. A stable of running backs in Anthony Crawford, Ronnie Walker, Notorious Smith, Nasir Cooper and three capable weapons at receiver in Ronnie Monroe, Greg Cuffey and Dewonyea Westry make Hopewell a team to be feared.
Hopewell will start the postseason with a home game against (Team) at 7:30pm.
Regular Season Offensive MVP: QB Cameren Hill
Regular Season Defensive MVP: DB Ronnie Monroe
4. Matoaca (7-3)
After a two game skid in which the Warriors’ mistakes did them in, they rebounded nicely to blow out Colonial Heights 59-20 and to beat rival Thomas Dale 44-35 in a thrilling game.
They reenter the final top five poll as the resurgent program is back in the playoffs for the first time since 2006.
Matoaca has a high-octane offensive attack that averages 35 points per game headlined by quarterback Justin Ford, running back Jamison Harrison and wide receivers Terrence Whitfield and Anthony Warner. Running backs Cade Driskill and Russell Cohen along with B.J. Flowers also contribute.
As for now, it appears Matoaca will get a first-round match-up with 5A defending state champions in L.C. Bird. The Skyhawks have a daunting defense, but the Warriors can stump on the fact in practice this week that L.C. Bird has not played a offense as high-scoring as them to date.
Regular Season Offensive MVP: RB Jamison Harrison
Regular Season Defensive MVP: LB Tyler Voorhies
5. Thomas Dale (6-4)
The Knights are sliding into the playoffs on a three-game losing streak. Thomas Dale fans can take solace that while a loss is a loss, that all three losses were by less than ten points. Most included correctable mistakes on special teams, or turnovers.
Thomas Dale (#3 seed) will host a first round playoff game this Friday against Woodbridge (Woodbridge, VA) who finished the regular season 6-4 in the log jam that is the 6A South. Every team ranked three through seven finished their regular season 6-4.
Minimizing mistakes will be crucial to the Knights’ playoff success. Revamping the running game will be key, and the status of starting running back Max Oxendine is currently in the air after an injury that caused him to leave the Matoaca game. If needed, Trent Williams is an excellent option to tote the pig skin for the Knights. Matt Lawton has developed as the season has moved on and will need to throw the ball well.
Regular Season Offensive MVP: WR Brian Bullock
Regular Season Defensive MVP: LB Sam Stark
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