Playoff pairings set: Tigers to face Handley

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 1, 2005

The pairings for this week’s first-round playoff games have been finalized by the AHSAA and AISA for all seven area football teams.

While the area’s playoff-bound AHSAA Class 1A team already knew their destination and opponents for this Friday’s match-ups, Class 4A teams Demopolis and Greensboro had to wait until Week 10 to play out to know their first-round schedule. Due to a three-way tie in 4A Region 3 that had to be broken by non-regional record, it wasn’t until Region 3’s Handley lost 34-0 to 2A power Clay County last Friday, while Tallassee defeated Dadeville 14-7, that the pairings were finalized.

The results are that Demopolis will face off with Region 3 fourth-place team Handley at the Tigers’ home Memorial Stadium, while Greensboro, the Region 4 third-place team, will travel to Eclectic to take on the Elmore Co. Panthers. Handley finished the regular season with a 6-4 overall record, 5-2 in region, while Elmore finished at 7-3, 5-2.

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The other area team waiting to discover its playoff opponent was the Southern Academy Cougars. While the Cougars were wrapping up a second consecutive perfect regular season with a 17-7 win over Pickens Academy, Chambers Academy defeated the Crenshaw Cougars to claim the last playoff spot out of the AISA 1A East region.

Chambers’ victory will likely be seen as good news by Southern supporters. The Cougars went on the road to Lafayette and defeated Chambers 41-0 on Sept. 9. The rematch will take place this Friday in Greensboro. By virtue of winning the AISA 1A West, Southern will have home-field advantage for the first two playoff rounds if they defeat Chambers.

In AHSAA, the top two teams in each region host the first-round game while successive games are played at the home of whichever team has hosted fewer playoff games to that point in 2005. So while Demopolis and 1A Region 4 second-place finisher Sweet Water will play at home Friday, Greensboro and the area’s other 1A qualifiers (third-place John Essex, fourth-place Linden, and third-place Marengo) will go on the road. So will Sumter Academy, the AISA 1A West fourth-place finisher that will travel to take on Autauga Academy.

All AHSAA playoff games will take place this Friday at 7 p.m. Tickets for the Demopolis vs. Handley game will go on sale Wednesday at Demopolis High and will cost $7.