To get there, though, Sequoyah (4-3, 2-1) will have to get through its final two scheduled games — beginning with Friday’s trip to Northview.
The Titans (2-5, 2-1) are one of three teams — along with Sequoyah and Forsyth Central — tied for second in the subregion with 2-1 records.
A win over Northview would likely be enough for the Chiefs to win the No. 2 seed. Sequoyah holds the tiebreaker with Forsyth Central, which it beat 38-13 last week, and it hosts winless Cambridge — a first-year varsity program — next week.
As the No. 2 seed, Sequoyah would host the No. 3 seed of the southern subregion, with the winner of that game advancing to the state playoffs.
Sequoyah can surpass Creekview for the No. 1 seed, but only if the Chiefs win out and the Grizzlies lose their final two games — which includes a favorable matchup with winless North Springs, a loser of 30 consecutive games.
“Whoever wins this one probably locks up the second seed, making this game huge for that reason alone,” Sequoyah coach James Teter said. “(Northview is) averaging over 37 points per game, and it’s like I told our kids — it doesn’t matter what their record is. We have to respect that number because I know we aren’t averaging 37 points per game.”
Northview has found new life of late after making a quarterback change midway through the season and inserting sophomore D.J. Pearson behind center. Since taking the reins of the Titans’ no-huddle spread offense, Pearson has completed 71 percent of his passes and thrown 12 touchdowns to just three interceptions — all while leading Northview to an average of 53.3 points over its last three games.
Against Creekview two weeks ago — a 56-42 loss for Northview — Pearson completed 27 of 43 passes for 367 yards and three touchdowns.
Similar spread attacks to Northview’s haven’t treated Sequoyah terribly. The Chiefs yielded 37 points in a loss to Cherokee and 38 points in a win over Sprayberry — the only two times this season the Chiefs have allowed more than 21 points.
Teter said the key for Sequoyah in combating Northview’s up-tempo offense will be keeping its legs fresh on defense, through substitutions and controlling the clock on offense.
“We’ll have to work on substituting in (quickly), but we’ve done OK in those situations this year, and I think we’ll be able to handle it this week,” Teter said. “Other than that, I think our offense may be our best defense if we can stay on the field longer than (Northview) and have some success running the ball.”
Fresh off a 212-yard performance against Forsyth Central, running back Blake Ingleton is sure to be a big part of that strategy against what has been a porous Northview defense this season.
Before shutting out winless North Springs last week, Northview’s defense had allowed 45 or more points on five occasions — and 55 or more points three times.
“We’ve seen other Wing-T teams have some success on them this year, so we’re going to run our stuff, keep it simple and execute what we do,” Teter said.