Regardless if your destination is Taylor Field or Boz Adams Field do yourself one favor Friday night: Get there early.
While the IHSA Playoffs are still a few weeks away, the matchups, the stakes that are on the line and the fall feeling in the air are going to make things feel a little more like post season play.
The Harrisburg Bulldogs welcome in Benton to Taylor Field Friday night with the Ohio Division of the River-to-River Conference title on the line. Both clubs come in at 4-0.
Harrisburg (6-1) is looking to keep a four game winning streak going as they take on a Ranger ballclub that is undefeated on the season at 7-0. More so, a Bulldog win would almost secure a home playoff game for the postseason.
"It couldn't have ended up any better for both teams' kids, I don't think," HHS head coach Jason Roper said on the potential matchup for River-to-River supremacy. "It works out to be a great situation where we are both undefeated in the conference and playing for the conference championship with the way things worked out. It should create a good atmosphere and should be a good game because they are a good team. They have three runnings backs, including a quarterback that all run the ball very well."
Over at Boz Adams Field, the Eldorado Eagles play host to nearby Vienna-Goreville, an already playoff-eligible ballclub, but in order for EHS to get to the postseason the Eagles need a win in the next two weeks.
Eldorado's only other chance at playoff glory would be next Friday when the Eagles play host to Sesser-Valier-Waltonville-Woodlaw, who at this point in the season are playoff eligible as well.
"Vienna-Goreville has to be the most improved football team in southern Illinois," EHS head coach Brandon Hampton said. "They are everyone's feel-good story and when you watch them on film, they run a physical style offense."
Michael Dann can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @spydieshooter.