With Nebo, Provo and Alpine school districts on fall break the next four days, Region 4 and Region 7 are playing their football games tonight.
Timpview, because of a bye, is the only team from those two regions not playing. The Thunderbirds, who are cruising to another region title, have only one league game remaining next week against rival Provo.
The marquee game tonight will see American Fork (2-1) travel the short distance to Lone Peak (2-1) in what is expected to be an energized, emotional and physical battle for second place in Region 4. The game also marks the return of former Knight Scott LeFrandt, who transferred to American Fork two weeks ago in a controversial ruling, to play on his old field against his old teammates.
The winner, besides clinching a postseason berth, will stay in the hunt to challenge Pleasant Grove (3-0) for the league title. The loser will likely drop out of the title chase and into a tie for third. The Cavemen have the region's top running attack, while the Knights are much improved of late in controlling the clock.
Another big game in Region 4 has Spanish Fork (1-2) hitting the road to take on the Vikings. The Dons need at least one more win to have any chance of a playoff spot. Pleasant Grove is looking to keep its region record perfect heading into next week's big showdown with American Fork.
There are two battles going on in Region 7. If Orem and Mountain View, both at 3-1, win tonight they'll meet next week in their big rival game to determine the league's No. 2 seed. The other fight is for region's fourth and final seed to the playoffs. Currently, Provo, Springville, Tooele and Payson are tied with one win each. The Buffaloes are playing their final league game tonight and must defeat Orem or their season is done.
The winner of tonight's Provo at Springville game will be in the driver's seat for that final postseason spot. It's a must win for the Bulldogs because they have Timpview next week. The Red Devils control their destiny more than the other three teams because their final two games are against other teams with one win. Payson, which hosts Mountain View tonight, has a huge game next week against Springville. Three wins is a guarantee for a playoff spot, but there's a good chance two or three teams in Region 7 will tie for that fourth spot with two wins.
SOUTHERN DANDY: Region 9 also plays its games this Wednesday, and the Snow Canyon at Dixie game is basically a playoff game. Only two playoff berths are available for the three 4A schools (Pine View, Snow Canyon, Dixie), and Pine View has already claimed one. The Dixie-Snow Canyon winner will join the Panthers in the postseason. Canyon View's only hope of qualifying for the playoffs in 3A is to upset Cedar tonight.
RECORD SETTERS: Park City set a new state record last Friday by rushing 614 yards in a 64-21 win over Uintah. The previous record of 594 yards was set by Hunter in a 72-22 victory over Highland in the first-round of the playoffs in 1991. Park City finished with 664 yards of total offense against the Utes, which ranks eighth all-time for total yards in a game.TOP 25 WATCH: Cottonwood's come-from-behind win over East and Sky View's win over Bountiful in Week 8 created the biggest movement in this week's Deseret Morning News Top 25 rankings. The Colts jumped from No. 9 to No. 7 with the victory while East fell four spots from No. 6 to 10. Sky View leapt from No. 20 to 15 with its convincing 27-10 win over Bountiful, which fell from No. 12 to No. 19. The biggest losers in this week's 12-writer poll following Week 8 were No. 21 Judge (down eight spots) and No. 25 Fremont (down eight spots). Spanish Fork and Cyprus dropped out this week's poll, making room for No. 23 West and No. 24 Union, which are each making their top 25 debut this season.