AKRON – A year after making a historic run to the state finals, the Tippecanoe Valley Unified Flag Football team found out its path if it hopes to repeat a run to state.
The IHSAA released Monday evening the sectional pairings for the Unified Flag Football Sectional and state tournament. This is the second year of Unified Flag Football, and the sectional hosted by Tippecanoe Valley has the northern state champion from its inaugural tournament in the host Vikings. The IHSAA announced Monday evening the pairings, which has 37 teams in the tourney, up 12 from a season ago.
Valley reached the finals last season after defeating Warsaw and Wawasee at the Warsaw Sectional and then slogged past Griffith at a rainy Valley Regional a week later. Valley reached the state semi-finals at the Indianapolis Colts practice facility in Indianapolis and promptly beat Noblesville by a touchdown. In the championship game, Valley lost to Bedford North Lawrence 50-26 in the first-ever state championship game for Unified Flag Football.
This season the sectional will go from four to six teams, which will include Valley, Warsaw, Wawasee and Goshen along with Central Noble and East Noble. The two Noble County teams will meet in the sectional’s first game, with Tippecanoe Valley and Warsaw playing at the same time on the opposite side of the field. Wawasee will meet the Noble County winner, and Goshen will get the Warsaw-Valley winner in the semi-finals. The semi-final winners will come back for the finals.
The Valley Sectional winner will take on the Valparaiso Sectional winner, which is just a two-team sectional comprised of Valpo and East Chicago Central. West Lafayette and Fort Wayne Carroll sectional winners will make up the four-team regional, a location to be determined at a later date.
The IHSAA State Finals have been moved this year to Grand Park in Westfield, which will host the final four teams on Oct. 19.