Region 2-6A unsettled heading to final week

Published 11:15 am Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Three of the four playoff berths from Region 2-6A have been determined. The rest, everyone will figure out Friday night.

Clinton, Warren Central, Jim Hill and Northwest Rankin are all in the mix for playoff bids, with none of the seeds or first-round opponents completely nailed down.

Warren Central (5-5, 4-2 Region 2-6A) has the simplest solution. It clinched a spot last week, and can secure the No. 3 seed by beating Jim Hill this Friday. A loss would drop the Vikings to fourth place.

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Warren Central, which can’t finish better than third, will play on the road in the first round of the playoffs either way. It’ll be at defending state champion Olive Branch if it beats Jim Hill, or at Region 1-6A champion South Panola if it loses.

Clinton has also secured a playoff berth and will have this Friday off. The Arrows will pick up a forfeit win over Vicksburg because of the numerous player suspensions handed down by the MHSAA following the Gators’ brawl with Murrah two weeks ago.

Clinton (6-5, 5-2) will finish second and host Southaven if Warren Central beats Jim Hill. If Jim Hill wins Friday night, Clinton will finish in third place.

Jim Hill (6-4, 4-2), meanwhile, faces an all-or-nothing scenario against Warren Central. Jim Hill owns the head-to-head tiebreaker against Clinton, and would move into second place with a victory Friday.

If the Tigers lose, however, they might miss the playoffs entirely. Northwest Rankin (4-6, 3-3) beat Jim Hill 9-3 on Oct. 5, and thus owns the head-to-head tiebreaker. A Northwest Rankin win Friday against Murrah, coupled with a Jim Hill loss to WC, would put Northwest and Jim Hill in a tie for fourth — which Northwest Rankin would win.

A Northwest Rankin loss to Murrah (5-5, 2-4) would also put Jim Hill into the playoffs, as either the second or fourth seed.

Madison Central (7-3, 6-0) has clinched the region championship and will host either Columbus or Grenada in the first round Nov. 10.

Greenville-Weston, which plays Madison Central this week, has been eliminated from playoff contention.

Vicksburg and Murrah were declared ineligible for the playoffs by the MHSAA because of their brawl, but their records would not have been good enough to reach the postseason anyway.