Garrettsville – The Garfield football team backed into the playoffs this past weekend, and backed in may be an understatement. After starting off the season 6-0 and running up gaudy offensive numbers that were recognized statewide, the G-Men managed to lose three of their last four games and had to wait until about 4:30 Saturday afternoon when Elyria Catholic upset Gilmour to knock them out and the G-Men were in. In contrasting schedules, Garfield’s opponent, South Range, played a 10-game schedule; seven of the teams ended their season with a winning record, four made the playoffs.
Garfield’s 10-game schedule included two teams with a winning record and those same two teams are the only playoff teams on the G-Men’s schedule. However they do share a common opponent, Crestview. Garfield beat up on the Rebels 41-14 in the height of their successful s campaign. Three weeks later South Range beat Crestview 49-0.
This is Garfield’s first playoff appearance since 2010 and fifth in school history. South Range has been in the state tournament 15 times now, their last in 2013, and even had a stretch from 1999-2010 only missing the playoffs twice.
Making the playoffs is a great feat and is not to be diminished in any way. Only eight teams per region make the playoffs and four regions per division in the state. However there are seven divisions meaning 224 teams make the playoffs.
Saturday night the G-Men will head 50-plus minute drive, depending on who is driving the buses, south of Canfield to take on the Raiders from South Range. Kickoff is at 7pm.