Last week: Beat Oakland Mills, 44-0. This week: at Howard, Friday at 7 p.m..
6. (7.) Howard (6-3, 214-178)
Never count the Lions out. Year in and year out, Howard always seems to meet November with a winning record and a chance to make the postseason. After losing two of three in mid October, Howard bounced back with a win over surging Reservoir last week, and now they've got a chance to get into the playoffs with a win against Hammond Friday night.
W: Centennial (41-0), Mt. Hebron (35-7), Long Reach (38-37), Oakland Mills (27-15), Marriotts Ridge (33-7), Reservoir (13-7 OT); L: Atholton (28-7), River Hill (42-7), Glenelg (35-13).
Last week: Beat Howard, 13-7 OT. This week: home against Hammond, Friday at 7 p.m.
7. (3.) Reservoir (5-4, 235-116)
Ahh the Gators, they've baffled me all season long. Their scoring differential (+119, third best in the league), and win over Glenelg on Oct. 14 say they should be much higher. But their record (5-4) and losses to Atholton, River Hill, Long Reach and Howard place them here. Atholton certainly thanks them for that win over Glenelg though...They were really on the verge of greatness this season, so they just need to take the next step next year.
W: Marriotts Ridge (49-6), Mt. Hebron (42-0), Centennial (34-0), Glenelg (19-13 OT), Oakland Mills (43-0); L: River Hill (28-7), Long Reach (32-20), Atholton (24-14), Howard (13-7 OT).
Last week: Lost to Howard, 13-7 OT. This week: at Wilde Lake, Friday at 7 p.m.
8. (8.) Wilde Lake (4-5, 194-164)
This season has been a real letdown for the Wildecats, but I'll say it again: the banner on the wall of the gymnasium still says 2011 state champions (or something to that effect, I haven't been in their gym for a few weeks). Regardless, some of the sting could be eased with a home win to end the fall.
W: Oakland Mills (40-7), Marriotts Ridge (40-12), Mt. Hebron (42-0), Centennial (30-0); L: Hammond (16-12), Glenelg (28-8), River Hill (38-0), Atholton (35-0), Long Reach (28-22).
Last week: Lost to Long Reach, 28-22. This week: home against Reservoir, Friday at 7 p.m.
9. (9.) Mt. Hebron (3-6, 91-247)
I've said it many times this season: Mt. Hebron is better than the basement teams in Howard County, but simply not ready to tangle with the competitive group above them. There's no shame in that, and they've got a foundation to build on for future years.
W: Oakland Mills (26-0), Centennial (21-14), Marriotts Ridge (18-14); L: Hammond (36-13), Howard (35-7), Reservoir (42-0), Wilde Lake (42-0), Long Reach (26-6), Atholton (38-0).
Last week: Lost to Atholton, 38-0. This week: home against River Hill, Friday at 7 p.m.
10. (NA) Centennial (1-8, 68-283)
Whoa! A little shake-up at the bottom for a change. Welcome to the top ten, Eagles. Your prize is Atholton in week ten. Don't worry, a loss this week won't drop you back into the bubble-basement. Why the move? Centennial beat Marriotts Ridge, 26-0. Oakland Mills beat the Mustangs, 27-20. Centennial has been outscored on the season by 215 points, Oakland Mills by 280 (though Atholton might help close that gap this week). Unfortunately, Centennial and Oakland Mills don't play each other this season, so they won't get to settle this on the field.
W: Marriotts Ridge (26-0); L: Howard (41-0), Glenelg (34-0), Hammond (34-7), Mt. Hebron (21-14), Long Reach (42-21), Reservoir (34-0), Wilde Lake (30-0), River Hill (47-0).
Last week: Beat Marriotts Ridge, 26-0. This week: home against Atholton, Friday at 7 p.m.