BACK TO THE TOP: Wilson, the defending Interhigh West Division champion, has quietly played its way into position to win another division title and berth in the league championship game.
Wilson did not score more than 15 points in any of its first five games, but it played well enough defensively for a 2-2-1 record entering division play.
A touchdown in the final seconds on a tipped pass gave Wilson a divisional win over Cardozo. The Tigers have since defeated Dunbar, McKinley and, Friday, Theodore Roosevelt to earn at least a share of the division title. Wilson (6-2-1) closes out the season at Coolidge Saturday. Dunbar, a game behind Wilson, plays at McKinley Friday.
CHAMPIONS: Georgetown Prep won the IAC title this weekend by defeating St. Stephen's, 35-6. Prep, which allowed only 26 total points and finished 8-1, was 3-5-1 last year.
In Virginia, T.C. Williams defeated West Springfield, 31-7, and won the Northern District title and earned one of the four Northern Region Division 6 playoff berths. High-scoring Annandale, which suffered its only loss to T.C. (28-14) beat Washington-Lee Friday, 56-7, to win the Potomac District and get a Division 6 berth.
In the Virginia AAA Commonwealth District, Potomac and Fauquier play for the title Friday. Chancellor is close to the AA Battlefield championship, Loudoun Valley and Broad Run are tied for first place in the AA Northwestern District and Strasburg defeated Manassas Park, 21-10, to qualify for a A berth.
West Potomac is a game ahead in the AAA Gunston District, but already has wrapped up a Division 5 playoff berth based on the VHSL point system. Yorktown has also qualified for a Division 5 berth. Other contenders include Hayfield and Centreville.
MARYLAND PLAYOFF OUTLOOK:
Springbrook, Oxon Hill and Wootton remained unbeaten and are assured of berths in the Maryland Class 4A tournament. Seneca Valley, Old Mill and Friendly can clinch 4A berths with victories this week.
In Class 3A, Northern and Oakland Mills will be in the playoffs. Laurel, McDonough, Bladensburg are in the running for three of the other six spots.
Wilde Lake has clinched a Class 2A berth. Douglass helped itself tremendously by beating 3A Laurel and Damascus will make it with a win next weekend.
Sean West had a big day in Centennial's 26-24 triumph over Hammond. He rushed for 159 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries. He also ran for a two-point conversion. On defense, the junior defensive back blocked two extra-point kicks and returned an interception 37 yards for a touchdown that gave Centennial a 26-18 lead late in the fourth period.
Hammond's Mike Lerner caught a six-yard scoring pass with one second left to make it 26-24. Centennial stopped Hammond's try for a two-point conversion and escaped with the victory.
HOW THINGS CHANGE: A handful of playoff teams from last year are closing out subpar seasons. The biggest downfall was by Poolesville. A Maryland State Class A contender at 8-4 in 1989, Poolesville is 0-9 with one game to play. Magruder, the Maryland 3A runner-up at 10-3 a year ago, is 2-7. DuVal dropped from 11-1 to 4-5; Fairmont Heights from 9-2 to 1-8; Stuart from 11-2 to 3-6; Marshall from 9-2 to 2-7 and St. John's from 10-1 to 4-5.
Teams making the biggest positive turnarounds were Georgetown Prep; Douglass from 3-7 to 8-1; Gar-Field from 2-8 to 7-2; Broad Run from 3-7 to 7-2; and H.D. Woodson from 6-5 to 10-0.