The IHSAA on Thursday drew sectional pairings for the 48th annual state football tournament. For some of Class 5A and all of the lower four classes, sectionals begin on Oct. 23. Sectionals for Class 6A and most of Class 5A begin on Oct. 30.
Class 2A Sectional 36 looks entertaining. The eight-team field includes No. 2-ranked Eastbrook (6-1), No. 8 Tipton (6-1), No. 9 Eastern (7-0) and Lapel (5-2). If those teams take care of business in their opening-round games, Eastbrook and Tipton would clash in one semifinal and Eastern and Lapel would clash in the other.
Last year, Eastbrook beat Tipton in the semifinal round and Eastern in the championship. The Panthers went on to finish as state runners-up for the third time in four years.
Kokomo (3-3) drew a date with McCutcheon (2-5) in Class 5A Sectional 11, which opens Oct. 30. The Wildkats beat the Mavericks 28-23 in a North Central Conference game on Sept. 11.
The squads are no strangers when it comes to sectional matchups. Kokomo beat McCutcheon in the 2017 sectional final and again in the ‘18 opening round. The Mavs beat the Kats in last year’s opening round.
Western (6-1) drew the bye in Class 4A Sectional 22 and will begin play Oct. 30. The Panthers will await the winner of Frankfort (3-4) vs. Lebanon (1-3). Lebanon took out Western in a 32-31 thriller last year. Parochial power Roncalli (5-1) headlines the Sectional 22 field.
Class 3A Sectional 27 offers a Mid-Indiana Conference reunion — Northwestern (0-7) at Maconaquah (2-3). The teams have not met since the MIC broke up following the 2014-15 school year.
Also in Sectional 27, Peru (5-2) drew a home game against parochial school Fort Wayne Concordia Lutheran (4-3). Concordia beat Peru 56-6 in last year’s sectional final.
The Class 2A Sectional 34 opening round has Lewis Cass (2-5) vs. LaVille (4-0). No. 3-ranked Pioneer (6-1) is the team to beat in the grouping.
In Class A Sectional 42, Carroll (2-4) hosts Clinton Prairie (1-6). Defending state champion and parochial power Lafayette Central Catholic (1-2) is in the opposite half of the bracket.
Tri-Central (5-2) and Taylor (1-6) play in Class A Sectional 43, which is headlined by No. 1-ranked South Adams (7-0) and No. 10 Monroe Central (4-1).
Tri-Central visits Wes-Del (2-5) with the winner facing Madison-Grant (1-4) in the semifinal round. M-G drew the bye. Taylor is matched against Monroe Central with the winner likely facing South Adams in the semifinals.
The following are full pairings for the sectionals involving KT-area teams.
CLASS 5A SECTIONAL 12
McCutcheon (2-5) at Kokomo (3-3)
Harrison (4-3) at Zionsville (3-4)
CLASS 4A SECTIONAL 22
Frankfort (3-4) at Lebanon (1-3)
Roncalli (5-1) at Crispus Attucks (3-2)
Beech Grove (5-2) at Indy Shortridge (0-6)
Bye: Western (6-1), will face Frankfort-Lebanon winner
CLASS 3A SECTIONAL 27
F.W. Concordia (4-3) at Peru (5-2)
Oak Hill (4-3) at Bellmont (0-5)
Northwestern (0-7) at Mac (2-3)
Heritage (2-5) at Norwell (6-1)
CLASS 2A SECTIONAL 34
LaVille (4-0) at Cass (2-5)
Delphi (5-2) at Pioneer (6-1)
Bremen (5-2) at Rochester (0-5)
Wabash (4-3) at Manchester (2-5)
CLASS 2A SECTIONAL 36
Alexandria (2-5) at Eastern (7-0)
Lapel (5-2) at Frankton (1-6)
Tipton (5-1) at Elwood (1-5)
Blackford (3-3) at Eastbrook (6-1)
CLASS A SECTIONAL 42
Clinton Central (3-1) at North White (2-4)
Frontier (5-2) at Lafayette Catholic (1-2)
Traders Point Ch. (2-3) at Tri-County (2-4)
Clinton Prairie (1-6) at Carroll (2-4)
CLASS A SECTIONAL 43
Tri-Central (5-2) at Wes-Del (2-5)
Union City (3-3) at South Adams (7-0)
Monroe Central (4-1) at Taylor (1-6)
Bye: Madison-Grant (1-4), will face Tri-Central vs. Wes-Del winner