It’s playoff time in the bluegrass as tomorrow night begins a five week chase for a chance to play at Houchens-Smith Stadium in Bowling Green. Be sure to check out Trey Huntsman’s previews of the KHSAA Football Class 1A and Class 2A playoffs.
When discussing 3A football in Kentucky its usually safe to start with the 3 time defending champion Belfry Pirates. Behind a massive O-line and a solid committee of running backs I see Belfry cruising into the semi-finals where they will most likely face a Corbin team that saw its 2015 season ended in the semis by the Pirates in a 42-14 blowout.
Things get interesting on the other side of the bracket as Caldwell County, Elizabethtown , Louisville Central, and Lexington Catholic all won their districts for the second straight season since realignment.
Those four teams are considered favorites to return to the district championships as they have all played well heading into the playoffs. Caldwell County is itching for a chance to play Elizabethtown after last season’s hail-mary finish that ended the Tigers playoff run. Junior quarterback Shane Burns has thrown for 2,407 yards and 30 touchdowns in Caldwell’s 10 games.
Best game of round one – Western Hills vs Bardstown – Bardstown posted a 9-1 record this season after a 2015 season that only included 5 wins. Tariq Armor has rushed for 1,031 yards on 113 carries for 13 touchdowns. Armor leads the Tigers against Wandale Robinson and Western Hills. Robinson leads class 3A in rushing as he has rushed for 1,641 yards and 24 touchdowns in 10 games. Western Hills is 7-3 this season with their only losses coming against Lex Cath, Boyle County, and Madison Southern.
Game to Watch For – Belfry @ Corbin- This would be a rematch of last year’s semi finals but as of right now it seems very likely as both teams have just one blemish to their impressive seasons. Belfry’s only loss of the season was to Knoxville Catholic in a 45-20 blowout. The Pirates dominated their 2 district opponents outscoring them 109-0. Corbin’s only loss was to class 2A favorite Mayfield in a 35-34 thriller at Lindsay Wilson College back in September. The RedHounds have three impressive wins on their resume as they defeated a 9-1 Danville team, Southwestern, as well as 3A foe Central. If anyone has a chance to stop Belfry’s freight train it certainly may be Corbin as they have played outstanding defense all season only giving up 85 points in 10 games.
Player to Watch For – Dameon Jones -The Lexington Catholic junior running back has led the Knights to a four game winning streak including a huge performance against Boyle County to secure a district championship. Jones rushed for 185 yards on 32 carries against the Rebels. The Knights have secured home field advantage throughout the playoffs as they host the 6-4 Waggener Wildcats tomorrow night.