WPIAL football playoff picture entering Week 9

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Saturday, October 19, 2019 | 11:08 PM


The stretch run continues as the WPIAL football season heads into the final week of the regular season.

Heading into Week 9, the list of teams that have clinched has risen to 56 with only six spots still up for grabs. The playoff fields are set in both Class 6A and Class A.

The TribLive High School Sports Network will keep you updated with each passing week as to who is in and who is still alive.

All the key games in Week 9 can be heard on Trib HSSN.

In Class 6A, the top six teams make the playoffs, with the top two teams earning a quarterfinals bye.

In Class 5A, the top five teams in each conference make the playoffs, with one sixth-place team earning a wild card berth. The top two teams and two of the three third-place teams will host a first-round playoff game.

In Class 4A and 3A, the top four teams in each conference qualify for the playoffs, with the top two teams earning a quarterfinals home game.

In Class 2A, the top four teams in each conference make the playoffs, with the top two teams hosting first-round playoff games.

In Class A, the top two teams in each conference make the playoffs with two of the third-place teams earning wild card berths. The three conference champions and one second-place team will host quarterfinals games.

Only conference records are shown.

Class 6A

Clinched: North Allegheny (7-0), Central Catholic (6-1), Pine-Richland (6-1), Mt. Lebanon (5-2), Seneca Valley (3-4), Canon-McMillan (2-5)

Locked in: Seneca Valley is fifth, Canon-McMillan is sixth

Out: Hempfield (2-6), Norwin (1-6), Butler (0-7)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – North Allegheny at Pine-Richland, Central Catholic at Mt. Lebanon, Norwin at Seneca Valley, Butler at Canon-McMillan

The Lowdown

Same six teams qualify this fall as they did in 2018. If North Allegheny beats Pine-Richland, NA is first. If Pine-Richland wins and Central Catholic loses, P-R is first and NA second. If Pine-Richland and Central Catholic win, there will be tri-champions with tiebreaker points determining the order — entering Week 9, North Allegheny +61, Central Catholic +52, Pine-Richland +50. If North Allegheny beats Pine-Richland and Mt. Lebanon beats Central Catholic, NA is first and tiebreaker points would decide second. Mt. Lebanon is +26.

Class 5A Big East

Clinched: Penn-Trafford (5-0), Gateway (4-1), McKeesport (4-1), Franklin Regional (3-2), Latrobe (2-4)

Locked in: Penn-Trafford is first, Franklin Regional is fourth, Latrobe is fifth

Out: Plum (1-5), Connellsville (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Gateway at McKeesport, Penn-Trafford at Franklin Regional

The Lowdown

The winner of Gateway at McKeesport is second and the loser is third.

Class 5A Northern

Clinched: Penn Hills (6-0), North Hills (5-1), Kiski Area (3-3), Mars (3-3)

Still alive: Fox Chapel (3-3), Shaler (2-4), Hampton (2-4)

Out: Armstrong (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – North Hills at Penn Hills, Mars at Hampton, Armstrong at Kiski Area, Shaler at Fox Chapel

The Lowdown

The winner of North Hills at Penn Hills is first and the loser is second. The rest is so confusing, let’s spell out all of the scenarios:

• If Mars, Kiski Area and Fox Chapel win: KA is third, FC is fourth, Mars is fifth and Hampton is alive for wild card

• If Mars, Kiski Area and Shaler win: KA is third, Mars is fourth, Shaler is fifth and Fox Chapel is alive for wild card

• If Mars, Armstrong and Fox Chapel win: FC is third, Mars is fourth, KA is fifth and Hampton is alive for wild card

• If Mars, Armstrong and Shaler win: Mars is third, Shaler is fourth, KA is fifth and Fox Chapel is alive for the wild card

• If Hampton, Kiski Area and Fox Chapel win: KA is third, FC is fourth, Hampton is fourth and Mars is alive for the wild card

• If Hampton, Kiski Area and Shaler win: KA is third, FC is fourth, Ham is fifth and Mars is alive for the wild card

• If Hampton, Armstrong and Fox Chapel win: FC is third, KA is fourth, Hampton is fifth and Mars is alive for the wild card

• If Hampton, Armstrong and Shaler win: KA is third, FC is fourth, Hampton is fifth, and Mars is alive for the wild card

Mars is in because it would win the wild card chase if it finishes sixth based on having more Gardner Points then West Allegheny.

Class 5A Allegheny Eight

Clinched: Moon (5-1), Peters Township (5-1), Baldwin (4-2), Bethel Park (4-2), Upper St. Clair (4-2)

Still alive: West Allegheny (2-4)

Out: Chartiers Valley (0-5), Woodland Hills (0-5)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Bethel Park at Upper St. Clair, Moon at West Allegheny, Peters Township at Baldwin, Woodland Hills at Chartiers Valley

The Lowdown

If Moon and Peters Township both win, Moon would be first and Peters Township second based on head-to-head tiebreaker.

Class 5A wild card

Plum has no chance at the wild card. West Allegheny either needs to beat Moon or have Hampton lose, yet finish sixth in the Northern. Any three-win team will beat West A out for a wild card. If West Allegheny beats Moon, the Indians would still lose out on wild card if Mars finishes sixth in Northern.

Class 5A third-place home game

The top two teams in each conference plus two third-place finishers will earn a home game in the first round. While Mars losing the last two weeks has helped the Northern in the wild card chase, it hurts the hunt for a third-place home game. The third-place teams in the Allegheny Eight and Big East conferences likely will earn home games.

Class 4A Northwest Eight

Clinched: South Fayette (6-0), Blackhawk (4-2), Montour (4-2)

Still alive: Knoch (4-3), New Castle (3-3)

Locked in: South Fayette is first

Out: Highlands (3-4), Beaver (1-5), Ambridge (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Montour at South Fayette, Blackhawk at Beaver, Ambridge at New Castle

The Lowdown

New Castle will clinch with a win over Ambridge. Knoch’s only chance is if New Castle loses. If Blackhawk and Montour lose and New Castle wins to force a four-way tie, Blackhawk would be second, New Castle third, Montour fourth. If Montour wins, Blackhawk loses and New Castle wins forcing a three-way tie, Montour would be second, Blackhawk third, New Castle fourth.

Class 4A Big Eight

Clinched: Thomas Jefferson (6-0), Belle Vernon (5-1), Greensburg Salem (4-2), West Mifflin (4-2)

Locked in: Thomas Jefferson is first, Belle Vernon is second

Out: Trinity (2-4), Laurel Highlands (2-4), Indiana (1-5), Ringgold (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – West Mifflin at Thomas Jefferson, Ringgold at Belle Vernon, Indiana at Greensburg Salem, Trinity at Laurel Highlands

The Lowdown

If Greensburg Salem wins in Week 9 or if West Mifflin loses, Greensburg Salem is third and West Mifflin fourth.

Class 3A Tri-County West

Clinched: Aliquippa (6-0), Central Valley (6-0), Beaver Falls (4-2), South Park (3-3)

Locked in: Beaver Falls is third, South Park is fourth

Out: Hopewell (2-4), Keystone Oaks (2-4), Quaker Valley (1-5), Waynesburg (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Central Valley at Aliquippa, Beaver Falls at Hopewell, Quaker Valley at South Park, Waynesburg at Keystone Oaks

The Lowdown

The winner of Central Valley at Aliquippa is conference champion and the loser is second.

Class 3A Big East

Clinched: North Catholic (7-0), Derry (6-1), Elizabeth Forward (5-2)

Still alive: Burrell (4-3), Deer Lakes (3-4), Mt. Pleasant (3-4)

Locked in: North Catholic is first, Derry is second, Elizabeth Forward is third

Out: Freeport (3-5), Yough (1-6), Uniontown (0-7)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Derry at Burrell, Deer Lakes at North Catholic, Elizabeth Forward at Yough, Mt. Pleasant at Uniontown

The Lowdown

If Burrell beats Derry, Burrell is fourth. If Burrell loses and Deer Lakes and Mt. Pleasant lose, Burrell is fourth. If Burrell loses, Deer Lakes loses and Mt. Pleasant wins, Mt. Pleasant is fourth. If Burrell loses, Deer Lakes wins and Mt. Pleasant wins, Deer Lakes is fourth based on Gardner Points.

Class 2A Allegheny

Clinched: Avonworth (5-0), Apollo-Ridge (4-2), East Allegheny (3-2), Shady Side Academy (3-2)

Locked in: Avonworth is first, Apollo-Ridge is second

Out: Steel Valley (3-3), Summit Academy (1-5), Valley (0-5)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Avonworth at Shady Side Academy, East Allegheny at Valley

The Lowdown

An East Allegheny win or a Shady Side Academy loss means East Allegheny is third, Shady Side Academy is fourth. Even if East Allegheny and Shady Side Academy lose, defending champion Steel Valley is eliminated since the Ironmen lose head-to-head tiebreakers with both EA and SSA.

Class 2A Century

Clinched: McGuffey (6-0), Washington (6-0), Charleroi (5-2), Southmoreland (5-2)

Locked in: Charleroi is third, Southmoreland is fourth

Out: Carmichaels (2-4), Brownsville (1-5), Frazier (1-5), Beth-Center (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Washington at McGuffey, Beth-Center at Frazier, Carmichaels at Brownsville

The Lowdown

The winner of Washington at McGuffey in Week 9 is first and conference champion while the loser is second. Charleroi owns the tiebreaker over Southmoreland.

Class 2A Midwestern Athletic

Clinched: Freedom (5-1), Neshannock (5-1), Riverside (4-2)

Still alive: New Brighton (4-2), Western Beaver (3-3)

Out: Mohawk (1-6), Shenango (3-3), Ellwood City (0-7)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Freedom at Western Beaver, Riverside at New Brighton, Neshannock at Shenango

The Lowdown

Riverside has clinched because even if it loses to New Brighton, Riverside owns tiebreakers over both Shenango and Western Beaver. New Brighton will clinch with a win or a Western Beaver loss. If New Brighton loses and both Shenango and Western Beaver win to force a three-way tie for fourth, it would come down to tiebreaker points. Entering Week 9, NB is +24, Shenango +2, WB -6 so New Brighton would finish fourth. Western Beaver can clinch with a win and loses by both New Brighton and Shenango.

Class 2A Three Rivers

Clinched: Burgettstown (6-0), Brentwood (6-1), South Side (4-3)

Still alive: South Allegheny (3-3), Serra Catholic (3-3)

Locked in: Burgettstown is first, Brentwood is second, South Side is third

Out: Seton LaSalle (2-4), Carlynton (1-5), Fort Cherry (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Burgettstown at South Allegheny, Serra Catholic at Fort Cherry, Carlynton at Seton LaSalle

The Lowdown

Serra Catholic can clinch fourth with a win over Carlynton or a South Allegheny loss to Burgettstown. The only chance for South Allegheny is if the Gladiators win and Serra Catholic loses. Serra owns the tiebreaker over South Allegheny.

Class A Eastern

Clinched: Clairton (5-0), Jeannette (5-0), Greensburg Central Catholic (4-2)

Locked in: Greensburg Central Catholic is the third place wild card

Out: Leechburg (2-3), Springdale (2-3), Riverview (1-5), Imani Christian (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Jeannette at Clairton, Springdale at Leechburg

The Lowdown

The winner of Jeannette at Clairton in Week 9 is first and conference champion with the loser taking second.

Class A Big 7

Clinched: Sto-Rox (6-1), Cornell (5-1), Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (5-1)

Locked in: Sto-Rox is first

Out: Laurel (4-2), Union (3-3), Rochester (1-4), Bishop Canevin (0-5), Northgate (0-5)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Cornell at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, Northgate at Laurel, Bishop Canevin at Rochester

The Lowdown

Laurel loses tiebreakers to both Cornell and Our Lady of the Sacred Heart. The winner of Cornell at OLSH in Week 9 will finish second with the loser finishing third and earning a wild card.

Class A Tri-County South

Clinched: West Greene (7-0), California (5-1)

Locked in: West Greene is first, California is second

Out: Chartiers-Houston (5-2), Monessen (3-3), Jefferson-Morgan (2-4), Bentworth (2-4), Mapletown (1-5), Avella (0-6)

Conference schedule

Week 9 – Avella at Monessen, California at Mapletown, Jefferson-Morgan at Bentworth

The Lowdown

Everything is settled. So Sweet.

Class A wild cards

Greensburg Central Catholic and the Cornell-OLSH loser are the two wild cards. The tiebreaker points going into Week 9 are Cornell +47, OLSH + 38, GCC +24, Chartiers-Houston +22, with Chartiers-Houston being done with conference play.

Class A second-place home game

If Clairton loses, the Bears will earn a home game based on Gardner Points. If Jeannette loses, California has inside track at a home game based on Gardner Points.

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