Here are the top 6 takeaways from Week 9 of Peoria high school football
Week 9 of the high school football season has come and gone.
Before we gear up for the playoffs, here are six takeaways from weekend games:
Co-champions in the Mid-Illini
Washington and Morton will share the Mid-Illini Conference title.
The Panthers utilized their stingy defense to grab their second shutout in three games, beating East Peoria, 43-0 on Friday. This gives Class 6A No. 10 Washington (7-2, 6-1) back-to-back league crowns and its third since 2018.
Morton, on the other hand, secured a share of its first M-I title since 1992 by beating Dunlap, 42-7. Running back Seth Glatz ran for 344 yards and five touchdowns for the Potters (7-2, 6-1), who in '92 shared the league championship with Metamora and Washington.
The Panthers beat Morton 35-14 in Week 5, but the league by-laws don't break ties.
Peoria High rules the city
Class 5A fifth-ranked Peoria High escaped with a 40-35 win over Class 4A No. 8 Peoria Notre Dame on Thursday night at Peoria Stadium. The Lions (7-2, 7-1) secured sole possession of second place in the Big 12 Conference with Normal Community's 45-7 win over Normal West.
Peoria High beat PND, Richwoods (62-27 in Week 1) and earned a forfeit victory over Manual for a 3-0 sweep against River City teams.
Eddie Clark continued to be a steady backfield presence, rushing for 232 yards and four TDs, while Ricky Hearn caught a TD and Deatric Pollard added a 67-yard score.
Canton knocks off Metamora
The Little Giants ended their season on a high note, knocking off Metamora, 35-30. This snapped a two-game losing streak for Canton (3-6, 3-4), which got its first win over Metamora since 2016.
Canton quarterback Nick Oldfield helped Canton race out to a 29-8 first-half lead before Metamora scored 22 unanswered points. Oldfield rolled up 459 total yards (264 rushing, 195 passing) and five TDs including two scoring strikes to Jake Miller and one by Turner Plumer.
Manual grabs first win
Manual posted its first win of the season and snapped a 10-game losing streak with a 22-20 win over Richwoods at Peoria Stadium on Friday night. Their last win came in the spring when the Knights forfeited the season opener.
A rushing TD by Jerome Cranford and a receiving score from Shakeel Thomas helped the Rams (1-8, 1-7) slide into the win column.
Eureka and Elmwood/Brimfield clinch
Eureka and Elmwood/Brimfield each picked up their sixth victories and officially clinched their spots in the state playoffs.
The Hornets (6-3, 2-3) used a go-ahead TD pass by Jake Morin to give Eureka a 29-20 win over Heart of Illinois-Large Division rival Deer Creek-Mackinaw. Morin threw for a pair of scores — both to Cameron Manning — and ran for another as Eureka puts itself in the playoffs for the fifth time since 2016.
Elmwood/Brimfield (6-3, 5-3) ended a three-year drought with a 54-30 victory against Prairieland Conference visitor Havana. The Trojans had to win five of their final six to secure their 10th playoff appearance since 2010.
So, who made the playoffs?
Playoffs have returned for the 2021 season and the Peoria area will be very well represented with potentially 25 teams. Here's who has clinched a playoff spot:
1A: Abingdon-Avon (8-1); Rushville-Industry (7-2); St. Bede (7-2); United (6-3)
2A: Farmington (9-0); Knoxville (8-1); Tremont (7-2); Deer Creek-Mackinaw (6-3)
3A: Kewanee (8-1); Princeton (8-1); Monmouth-Roseville (6-3); Eureka (6-3); Elmwood/Brimfield (6-3)
4A: Notre Dame (6-3); Macomb (6-3)
5A: Morton (7-2); Peoria High (7-2)
6A: Washington (7-2)
7A: Pekin (7-2)
And here's who's playoff eligible:
1A: Annawan/Wethersfield (5-4); Princeville (5-4)
2A: El Paso-Gridley (5-4)
5A: Metamora (5-4); Dunlap (5-4); LaSalle-Peru (5-4)
Adam Duvall is a Journal Star sports reporter. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @AdamDuvall.