The first foray for the Warsaw football program into the Class 6-A portion of the state tournament series will begin versus Fort Wayne Northrop.
That’s good news for the Tigers.
Warsaw will meet the Bruins in a sectional semifinal game Oct. 25 in Fort Wayne.
The IHSAA conducted pairings for the 41st annual tournament Sunday night in Indianapolis. A record total of 322 teams statewide are entered in the new six-class state tournament.
Warsaw, 6-2 on the season, meets host Northrop in a playoff opener of Sectional 3. The Bruins are just 2-6 on the season with a 14-13 overtime win over Luers in week two and a 55-42 win at Muncie South in week five.
The other bracket semifinal has Fort Wayne Carroll (6-2) at Homestead (5-3).
Warsaw, which plays at Concord Friday night for the Northern Lakes Conference championship, has won three in a row.
The Tigers and the Bruins have one common opponent this fall in East Noble. Warsaw lost 49-14 to the Knights, while Northrop dropped a 43-14 decision to East Noble.
The news was not quite as good for Wawasee. The Warriors face No. 7 Leo in a Class 4-A Sectional 19 first-round contest. Wawasee will host the undefeated Lions. The winner then faces the winner of the NorthWood (4-4) at East Noble (6-2) game in a semifinal clash.
Wawasee, which lost to Concord in the sectional title game in 2012, has won three of its’ last four games to sit at 4-4.
Leo, which won regional crowns in 2010 and 2011, finished 7-2 a year ago. The Lions are averaging 35.1 points-per-game this season, while giving up just 6.4. Leo posted a 35-7 win over Garrett on Friday night.
Tippecanoe Valley and Whitko each drew first-round home games in Class 3-A sectional play.
The Vikings, who have won four in a row to improve to 5-3, will host Jimtown (6-2) in Sectional 26. The winner then faces the winner of the Rochester (6-2) versus Peru (4-4) game.
Valley and Jimtown have each played Bremen this season. The Jimmies, who have lost to NorthWood and New Prairie, beat the Lions 24-6. The Vikings lost 22-7 to Bremen.
Whitko, which saw its’ five-game win streak snapped Friday night by Rochester, hosts Bellmont (4-4) in Sectional 27. That winner will meet either Fort Wayne Concordia (5-3) or Lakeland (6-2) in a semifinal matchup.
The Wildcats, who will host Valley Friday night for the Three Rivers Conference title, have a common foe with Bellmont. Both teams lost to Columbia City with Whitko dropping a 34-14 final and Bellmont losing 41-28 to the Eagles.
Triton will travel to West Central (4-4) for a first-round game in Sectional 41 of Class 1-A. The Trojans are officially 2-6 after receiving a forfeit win last week over Glenn. Triton has lost its’ last seven games on the field after winning the season opener. The Triton-West Central winner will face the winner of the South Central (4-4) versus Culver (2-6) game.
The Trojans and West Central have both played Culver this fall. West Central defeated the Cavaliers 18-6, while Triton lost 21-19.
The Class 6-A playoffs, which includes the 32 largest schools in the state, will have sectional semifinals Oct. 25 with sectional finals Nov. 1. Regionals are Nov. 8 and semi states Nov. 15.
Sectional first-round games for area teams in Class 4-A, 3-A and 1-A are Oct. 25 with sectional semifinals Nov. 1 and sectional championship games Nov. 8. Regionals are Nov. 15 and semi states Nov. 22.
The State Finals, which will be played at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, are Nov. 29 for Class 1-A, 3-A and 5-A. The title games in Class 2-A, 4-A and 6-A are Nov. 30.