The Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association released its playoff brackets Monday. First-round games are Friday, and the second round is Tuesday. Region semifinals are Friday, Nov. 3, and region finals are Thursday, Nov. 7.
But before win-or-go-home games begin, there are a few county championships to play for. At Broadneck on Tuesday night, No. 1 Severna Park and No. 2 Meade will play for the Anne Arundel County championship. On Sept. 21, Meade led 1-0 at halftime before surrendering an own goal in the second half and the game-winner in overtime to Severna Park senior Drew Belloff in a 2-1 loss.
On Monday night at Fairmont Heights, Bowie won the Prince George’s County championship with a 4-1 victory over International High School at Langley Park. The Bulldogs move on to the bubble and have a top seed in the Maryland 4A South region.
Leonardtown slides from second to sixth after a one-goal loss to Mount Saint Joseph. DeMatha drops out of the rankings following a 1-0 loss to Gonzaga, which rejoins the rankings after an unbeaten October.
Grace Christian wins MISAL
Throughout Saturday night’s Metro Independent School Athletic League championship, Takoma Academy double-teamed Grace Christian Academy’s Zach Wittlinge. With two defenders following his every move, the league MVP struggled to find space to receive passes.
Then with two minutes remaining, a Takoma Academy defender misplayed a long ball and Wittlinge gathered possession at the top of the box. The senior skipped past one defender, dribbled to the penalty spot and crushed the game’s only goal into the top of the net.
“We couldn’t get Zach the ball for most of the night, but once we finally had an opportunity at the end to create, that’s what Zach did,” Coach Dan Perrotta said. “He created a lane and the goalie had no chance.”
Takoma Academy beat Grace Christian in double-overtime in last year’s final. Grace Christian officials cannot remember the Knights ever winning the MISAL boys’ soccer title before Saturday.
The Top 10
1. Severna Park (13-0-1) LR: 1
The Falcons closed out their regular season with shutout wins over North County and Old Mill and will face either Arundel or Old Mill after their first-round bye.
2. Meade (12-1) LR: 3
The Mustangs and Broadneck were tied 3-3 at halftime of Meade’s 6-4 win Thursday. Senior Keelan Fedison scored a hat trick, while junior Silas Baker dished out three assists.
3. Whitman (10-1-2) LR: 4
The Vikings closed out the regular season with a 2-0 victory and will host Wheaton in the first round of the playoffs Friday.
4. Churchill (11-2) LR: 6
The Bulldogs lost to Whitman, 2-1, on Oct. 7 but won the rest of their Montgomery County games to claim the top seed in Maryland 4A West Section I. After a first-round bye, Churchill will face either Walter Johnson or Einstein.
5. Wilson (12-0-1) LR: 10
The Tigers took down Northwest D.C. rival and defending DCSAA champion Washington International, 2-0, on Friday.
6. Leonardtown (12-2) LR: 2
The Raiders staged a comeback after falling behind by three goals against Mt. St. Joseph’s, which is ranked No. 8 by the Baltimore Sun, but ultimately lost, 3-2.
7. Landon (11-2-2) LR: 5
After a 3-2 win over rival Georgetown Prep on Tuesday, the Bears lost, 2-1, to St. Stephen’s St. Agnes on Friday for their first IAC defeat of the year.
8. Gonzaga (10-6-3) LR: NR
After a rocky start that included losses to Severna Park, Leonardtown, Wilson, Georgetown Prep and Landon, the Eagles went 6-0-2 in October to establish themselves as contenders in the WCAC once again.
9. Mount Hebron (10-2-2) LR: NR
The Vikings closed their regular season with three straight wins to earn a first-round bye in the Maryland 3A East region playoffs.
10. River Hill (11-1-2) LR: 9
The Hawks won their regular season finale, 4-0, over Reservoir and as a No. 1 seed are still a favorite to win the Maryland 2A state title.
Dropped out: No. 8 DeMatha (6-7-3), No. 10 The Heights (13-3)
All records through Monday