Chaos has already reigned all over this week’s slate of games.
It’s the last full week of regular season action and many of these games are rescheduled contests from a week, two weeks, three weeks and maybe longer ago.
And if the forecasts hold true, the region is about to be frozen solid once again, which could cause more scheduling changes with barely over a week left to fit them in.
It’s crunch time now. In quite a few cases, teams are wrapping up their divisional seasons this week. Which means every single game is vital, both for the Mid-Penn tournament and District 3 playoffs.
Rest, health, hot and cold streaks and everything else in between will be more critical than ever heading into the postseason.
So here’s what we have to look forward to, one game at a time. All District 3 rankings are as of Friday.
D3-AAAA No. 22 Shippensburg (12-6, 7-4 Colonial) at D3-AA No. 4 Camp Hill (11-7, 7-5 Capital)
Both these teams come in on a relative hot streak. But the difference is what each is fighting for at this point in the season.
Camp Hill is looking cozy right now in the AA rankings. It’s won 10 of its last 11 games and the arrival of DeShawn Franklin has provided a spark offensively. The Lions’ points per game average has risen a whopping six points since Franklin showed up.
But Shippensburg is on the outside looking in. One team separates the Greyhounds from the district playoffs. They don’t have the dynamic scorers like the Lions do — Bryce Hastings averages 14.3 a game — but they do have a stout defense.
Bottom line is they need this game far more than Camp Hill.
ADVANTAGE: Camp Hill (Because Franklin and David Fetrow continue to be too much offensively.)
Lower Dauphin (12-6, 8-5 Keystone) at D3-AAAA No. 25 Cedar Cliff (9-9, 4-8)
The Colts find themselves in the same position as the Greyhounds, fighting to get into the postseason.
But Cedar Cliff is riding a four-game skid and has dropped steadily in the District 3-AAAA standings the past two weeks. It’s the first meeting between these two teams because of weather.
To have the best chance they’re going to need to find a way to break through in the front court. Lower Dauphin is probably taller in the post going two or three deep into its bench. So Zack Galic and Cameron Paul are going to have to be on point while the guards find ways to penetrate and find their big men.
ADVANTAGE: Lower Dauphin (Because they have too much up front.)
D3-AAAA No. 13 Carlisle (11-6, 8-3 Commonwealth) at Mifflin County (8-8, 5-6)
Carlisle’s win over Cumberland Valley, coupled with Harrisburg’s loss to CD East, makes the Commonwealth into a battleground up top.
But even with that going on, this matchup is more about the Thundering Herd maintaining their momentum and keeping themselves well inside the top 20 in AAAA.
Carlisle beat the Huskies comfortably last time around, but if Friday night was any indication, no Commonwealth matchup is easy. This game is sandwiched between matchups with CD East and Central Dauphin, so it’ll be important for them to stay just as energized for this game as those.
ADVANTAGE: Carlisle (J.D. Hughes is hot right now and stays that way.)
D3-A No. 11 Harrisburg Academy (10-7) at Hershey Christian (0-13)
Ok, sure, the records indicate this isn’t going to be very competitive.
And it may not be. But the Spartans need every win they can get to stay in playoff contention. They just upset West Shore Christian Thursday and have put together a good streak of late. So this game is no time to take a nap. Even the easier wins mean something for the rankings.
ADVANTAGE: Harrisburg Academy (Because have you seen Jalen Gabbidon?)
Steel-High (14-4, 11-1 Capital) at D3-AAA No. 19 East Pennsboro (10-7, 8-4)
Camp Hill just proved last week that the Rollers are mortal, pulling off a stunning 16-point upset.
That should provide a confidence boost for the Panthers, who lost to those same Lions by two Friday.
East Penn dropped four spots between last Sunday’s rankings and Friday, and find themselves outside the qualifiers for the first time all season. A win here would vault them up several spots more than likely. They only lost by eight last time they faced Steel-High, but somebody needs to have a big game offensively. Nobody is averaging more than 10 points.
ADVANTAGE: Steel-High (Because the Panthers don’t have a top offensive threat.)
Shippensburg at Milton Hershey (11-6, 8-3 Capital)
At Chambersburg’s Dunks for Drew
Basically this is the same situation as their game on Monday. The Greyhounds need every win they can get and are basically in survival mode already.
If they aren’t approaching each game as if it’s a playoff game, now would be a good time. If Hastings can knock down a few 3s that could go a long way. He’s already got 30 on the season, double anybody else on his team.
ADVANTAGE: Shippensburg (Because if they lose to Camp Hill, they’ll be desperate.)
This week’s schedule:
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•York Christian at Harrisburg Academy, 5:30
•Milton Hershey at West Perry, 7:30
•Shippensburg at Camp Hill, 7:30
•Mechanicsburg at Susquehanna Twp., 7:30
•West Shore Christian at Lititz Christian, 7:30
•Gettysburg at Big Spring, 6:30
•Camp Hill at Susquenita, 7:30
•CD East at Carlisle, 7:30
•Central Dauphin at Cumberland Valley, 7:30
•East Pennsboro at West Perry, 7:30
•Mechanicsburg at Bishop McDevitt, 7:30
•Milton Hershey at Northern, 7:30
•Trinity at Red Land, 7:30
•West Shore Christian at Covenant Christian, 7:30
•Lower Dauphin at Cedar Cliff, 8
•Cumberland Valley at Dover, 7:30
•Susquenita at Upper Dauphin, 7:30
•West Perry at Juniata, 7:30
•Carlisle at Mifflin County, 7:30
•Harrisburg Academy at Hershey Christian, 7:30
•Harrisburg Academy at New Covenant Christian, 7
•Big Spring at Greencastle-Antrim, 7:30
•Boiling Springs at Shippensburg, 7:30
•Northern at Camp Hill, 7:30
•Carlisle at Central Dauphin, 7:30
•Cedar Cliff at Hershey, 7:30
•Cumberland Valley at State College, 7:30
•Steel-High at East Pennsboro, 7:30
•Susquehanna Twp. at Mechanicsburg, 7:30
•Bishop McDevitt at Red Land, 7:30
•Susquenita at Middletown, 7:30
•Palmyra at Trinity, 7:30
•West Perry at Milton Hershey, 7:30
•West Shore Christian at Harrisburg Christian, 7:30
•Wilson at Cumberland Valley, 7:30
•Shippensburg at Chambersburg Dunks for Drew
Email Jake Adams at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @jakeadams520