Updated: Playoff seeds released for Western Mass. football tournaments
This time, it really will be the Battle for Pittsfield.
Seeds were released Sunday morning for the 2015 Western Massachusetts football tournaments, and the marquee match-up in Berkshire County comes in Division V as Pittsfield will host cross-town rival Taconic under the lights at Wahconah Park.
The two teams are part of a trio of local high schools that made the D-V field. No. 1 Hoosac Valley (8-0) will host No. 4 Frontier (7-1) in one semifinal while Pittsfield (6-2), the defending D-V champion, earned the No. 2 seed and a date with No. 3 Taconic (6-2). Both games will happen on Friday night at 7 p.m., with Hoosac hosting Frontier at Renfrew Field.
This will be Taconic's first trip to the postseason in a long time. Braves coach Jim Ziter said he wasn't sure the last time Taconic played a postseason game, but he is excited that Friday will break that lengthy drought.
"It's great, I'm excited for all the kids," Ziter said. "They've worked hard all year to get to this point. It's exciting for them."
The two teams met in the first week of the season this year, with Pittsfield emerging with a 22-20 win in overtime. Ziter said a lot has changed since then.
"It was eight weeks ago," Ziter said. "One thing, we've matured as a team and as a program, all of us ... We've had our ups and downs, but we are excited about getting the opportunity again to play."
In Cheshire, Hoosac coach Dayne Poirot was thrilled to see his team's hard work pay off with the top seed, but his message going forward is to keep focused.
"We've talked about that it depends on what you do from [here] on out, really," Poirot said. "Last year we were the No. 1 seed and didn't [win]. It depends on what you do from here."
Hoosac hosted Frontier in last year's semifinals, as well, and won 35-0. Poirot said he expects to see an even better Redhawks side on Friday.
"They've got a lot of their kids back that were their top players last year," Poirot said. "They have a pretty good line and some kids that have been playing for a long time."
In Division VI, No. 2 Lee (4-4) will host No. 3 Franklin Tech (7-1) on Friday at 7 p.m. and No. 4 McCann Tech (6-2) will travel to No. 1 Turners Falls (5-3) on Friday at 7 p.m in a rematch of last year's D-VI championship game, which McCann won 12-7.
McCann coach Bob LeClair said that this will be the third straight postseason that his Hornets have played Turners Falls, and four out of the last five tournaments.
"We think we know them pretty well," LeClair said. "We have seen them a couple of times so far this year ... We know this is pretty much what they are going to be doing. It's going to be a matter of executing what we want to do against them."
The Hornets will also have a bit of revenge on their minds. Two years ago, when McCann was the No. 1 seed, Turners Falls traveled to North Adams and dished out an upset.
In Division IV, defending Western Mass. champion Wahconah was left on the outside looking in as Northampton (4-4) snuck into the No. 4 slot and a trip to No. 1 Agawam (7-0). No. 2 South Hadley (5-3) will host No. 3 Chicopee Comp (5-2).
In Division II, No. 1 Springfield Central (7-1) hosts No. 4 Holyoke (5-3), and No. 2 Longmeadow (5-2) hosts No. 3 Minnechaug (5-3).
In non-tournament action, Wahconah will travel to West Springfield, Monument Mountain will host Amherst, Mount Greylock will host Commerce and Drury will head to Smith Vocational. Times and dates for those games have not been released yet.
Contact Geoff Smith at 413-496-6254.