When East Clinton travels to Owensville Friday night to face Clermont Northeastern, it’ll likely be a playoff elimination game.
East Clinton (4-4) is currently 16th in the Division V Region 20 playoff rankings. Clermont Northeastern (2-5) is 19th.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Friday night at CNE.
Even with 16 teams advancing to the post-season, the loser of this game Friday may be out of the playoff hunt. For sure, they’ll need to win in Week 10 and have plenty of help.
But for now the focus for EC is clearly the Rockets, losers of five straight. The Astros have lost four of five.
“I believe it will be their senior night and one of the good things about 16 teams getting in the playoffs is that there are more meaningful games late in the season,” EC head coach Steven Olds said. “We expect to get CNE’s best effort on Friday and we will have to go down there with a purpose and desire to get the job done. We told the guys yesterday that they have to decide what they want out of these last two games and then go get it.”
The Astros have been hit by the injury bug in recent weeks, most notably Landon Runyon.
“Landon (was injured) against Fayetteville and will likely miss the rest of the season,” Olds said. “We really appreciate the contributions that he’s made to our program over the last four years and we miss him out there.”
Olds said his team just didn’t play well last week against Williamsburg.
“It felt like we were in a daze and I really do not know how to explain it,” Olds said. “Losing Isaiah (Conger) on the third play of the game seemed to suck the life out of us as well. But you have to give credit to Williamsburg, they played well and were the better team on the night.”
Led by the seniors, Olds believes his team can still finish strong the final two weeks.
“It was great to be able to honor our seniors (last week),” said Olds. “Those guys have been through a lot. Their high school careers started out with an 0-10 season and maybe the only positive from the Williamsburg game is that we still have two games left to make it right and achieve our goals.”