Football playoffs kick off this weekend

MIAMI COUNTY — The postseason has come four weeks early this season.

And while two Miami County schools — Piqua and Covington — earned first-round byes and one school, Bradford, opted out of the playoffs, five other schools will be hosting playoff games this Friday and Saturday in Week 7, while two will be playing regular season games.

• Franklin Heights (0-5) at Troy (4-2): Troy, which qualified for the playoffs for four straight seasons entering this one, will host a first-round game for the third straight season when it takes on Franklin Heights in Division II, Region 8 on Friday. Over the past four seasons, Troy is 2-4 in the playoffs, last winning over Harrison in 2018.

The ninth-seeded Trojans will face No. 24 seed Columbus Franklin Heights, which went winless in its first five games before its Week 6 game against 5-0 Westerville South was cancelled.

• Ponitz (1-2) at Tippecanoe (4-1): The seventh-seeded Red Devils who last qualified for the postseason in 2016, host a first-round matchup in D-III, Region 12 Friday. They will take on No. 26 Ponitz, which began the season late, in mid-September, and went 1-2, defeating 0-3 Meadowdale 38-0 in Week 6.

• Ridgemont (2-4) at Troy Christian (3-3): No. 15 Troy Christian enters the playoffs on a two-game winning streak, last making a postseason appearance in 2016. The Eagles will host No. 18 Ridgemont in D-VII, Region 28, which is also on a two-game winning streak after dropping its first four straight. The winner will earn a trip to face No. 2 Fort Loramie in Week 8.

• Greenfield McClain (0-6) at Milton-Union (4-2): After qualifying for the playoffs last season, Milton-Union earned the No. 10 seed this year and will host a first-round game Saturday in D-IV, Region 16. The Bulldogs will take on No. 23 Greenfield McClain, which went winless in the regular season. Up for grabs is a trip to Valley View in Week 8 — which would be a rematch of Week 5’s 57-14 loss for Milton-Union.

• Miami East (2-4) at Anna (1-5): In D-VI, Region 24, No. 20 Miami East will travel to No. 13 Anna. After winning the D-VI state title last year, the Rockets had only defeated 0-6 Parkway in Week 6 this season, dropping three straight heading into Saturday’s matchup.

• Bethel (2-4) at Madeira (3-3): No. 21 Bethel, which last played a playoff game in 2017, will travel to No. 12 Madeira. The Mustangs enter the playoffs with two straight shutout wins after a string of three straight losses early in the season.

• Southeastern (2-4) at Lehman (2-2): After cancelling for the last two weeks, No. 14 Lehman will be back in action Friday in D-VI, Region 28, hosting No. 19 Southeastern. The Trojans snapped a two-game losing streak last week against 1-5 Cedarville, with their other win coming against winless Catholic Central.

• Ansonia (4-1) at Covington (4-1): After its game against National Trail in Week 6 was cancelled, Covington — which earned a first-round bye in D-VI, Region 24 — will host a regular season game against Ansonia in Week 7. The Tigers, who had their Week 5 game against the Blazers cancelled, have won three straight this year but haven’t beaten the Buccaneers since 2009.

• Bradford (0-6) at Catholic Central (0-6): Bradford opted out of the playoffs for a chance to end its 38-game losing streak — the longest current such streak in Ohio — when it travels to winless Springfield Catholic Central. The Irish are on a lengthy losing streak themselves, having dropped 30 straight dating back to 2017.