For the second year in a row, the Brewer boys are making a late charge for the final tourney berth, pulling off their second upset in a row. They’re a young team, so this will be a pretty good test of their mettle, as they’ve got a tough schedule ahead of them, starting with #1 Bangor (gulp).
With the average games played sitting at 13.5, I thought this would be a good time to take a quick spin around the competitive regions and see what’s up.
All numbers are current through games on the 25th.
Brewer was at 16% a couple of days ago, but they’ve come off the mat and rallied to 66%, ahead of Skowhegan, who they just beat. Four teams have already clinched and if you want to pencil in Erskine (99%), I won’t argue with you. Messalonskee has the highest chances, just ahead of Medomak and those 2 teams still have to play. Messalonskee also plays Skowhegan. These 4 teams have 4 of the toughest remaining schedules in the state. It’s worth noting that Brewer does not control their own destiny. The other 3 teams all do. Oh, and 6 different teams can still get the 1 seed.
A South is pretty much settled. 6 teams are already in with 2 more over 98%. Morse is over 90% and they’re currently sitting in 9th, which means Marshwood is going to need a miracle. It’s really a race for the top 7 spots to avoid 1) the play-in game and 2) Greely.
B North is also pretty much settled. Hermon & Caribou have clinched byes to Bangor. Oceanside, MDI, and Ellsworth are all over 85% to join them. That leaves John Bapst and Washington Academy for the final play-in spot. They still play and Bapst does control their own destiny. They’ll need to beat WA, then win 3 of their remaining 4 (Hermon, Caribou, Orono, Foxcroft) or get some help.
Four teams have clinched and 8 are 97% or greater to make the tourney, which means that it’s a battle for the final play-in spot. Sacopee Valley does not have a class B team left on their schedule and they do not control their own destiny. 2 more wins will probably do it for Lisbon. Also, Wells and Yarmouth are essentially a coin-flip for the final bye.
14 teams get in in C North, so it’s kind of hard to already be out of the running, but 3 teams are. No one has clinched a bye yet (top 2), but 7 teams have punched a ticket to at least a play-in game. Central Aroostook is 96% to get one of those spots. Then it’s a 3 team race between Mattanawcook (56%), Houlton (28%), and GSA (14%) for the other one. The bottom half is a bit of a mess. 10 teams are essentially in, which leaves 7 teams for 4 spots. All 7 of them control their own destiny. Searsport gets in if they win out and they’re 96% when they win 4 out of 5. As you might have guessed, these teams are going to play each other quite a bit.
3 teams get a bye in C South and those are already spoken for (Winthrop, Waynflete, and Hall-Dale). 3 more have clinched and 5 more are at 98% or higher. Basically, this is the race for the last spot:
St. Dominic: 31.7%
Yes, 1-12 St. Dominic. And that’s not even the weird part. Buckfield is the favorite to get in, BUT they don’t actually control their own destiny, thanks to a very weak remaining schedule against class D schools. Neither does Richmond, partly because they’ve only got 3 games left and 1 is against winless Wiscasset. St. Dominic does. 1-12 St. Dominic. They have 5 games left and if they run the table, they’re in. If they only get 4 of them, they’re 97% to get in. All 5 games are at home. It’s probably asking a lot for a 1-12 team to run the table, but you never know.
10 teams dance in D North. 4 have clinched. 3 more are over 99% and Bangor Christian and Machias are over 90%. They have to feel pretty good about their chances. That leaves 3 teams for 1 spot. Van Buren (65%) has the inside edge and their next game is against Wisdom (23%), so we could very soon be down to 2 teams. Wisdom has a tough schedule, as Van Buren is actually their easiest remaining game, but not as tough as Washburn (20%), who has Fort Kent, Easton, and Hodgdon.
8 of the 9 D South schools get in. 0-8 Greater Portland Christian only has 2 games left. They don’t control their own destiny, but if they can win their last 2, they’ve got a 91% chance of getting in. They can also get in with 1 win, but they need a lot of help. 4 teams have clinched.