The football playoff picture has taken its final shape.
And it’s becoming clear some of the elite teams in the area such as South Dade are gearing up for a potential run at a state championship.
Behind another solid effort from its running game, the Bucs scored a touchdown on each of their possessions in Monday’s District 16-8A tiebreaker at Harris Field to beat Southridge 14-6 and secure the district title.
South Dade (7-1), ranked No. 6 in the Miami Herald’s South Florida Top 20, won its first district title since 2012 and will host Southwest in the first round of the playoffs on Nov. 13 at Harris Field.
Prior to the loss, Southridge (5-4) earned a spot in the postseason by edging rival Killian 7-6 in the first quarter of the tiebreaker. The Spartans, ranked No. 13 by the Herald, will travel to play at Belen Jesuit (6-3) on Nov. 13 at 3 p.m. Last season, Southridge lost to Belen in the first round.
Killian (5-3) failed to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
“We’re young in certain areas of our team, so this was big to win the district in this format,” South Dade coach Nate Hudson said. “I think the excitement is back on this team. We had a little complacency in the middle of the season. This set the tone for the playoffs for us.”
South Dade lost its only game so far this season to Killian on Oct. 15, a week after the Cougars lost to Southridge. South Dade had a win over Southridge earlier this season thus creating the tiebreaker scenario after all three teams won their remaining district games.
Senior Jawon Hamilton led the Bucs with 10 carries for 45 yards and a touchdown that gave South Dade a 7-0 lead on a 26-yard drive in which Hamilton ran all four plays, capping it with a 3-yard touchdown.
Southridge answered with a big play on the ensuing possession when Freddie Pinder broke free and caught a 59-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Drakar Jerry. The Spartans missed the extra point, however, allowing South Dade to retain a 7-6 lead.
The Bucs answered with another prolonged drive assisted by three Southridge penalties.
Senior Tre’Ven Worthen finished it with a 22-yard touchdown run that followed a 16-yard run and put South Dade ahead by its winning margin.
Despite playing defense for most of its quarter against Killian, Southridge made its one possession count. Running back Cliff Smith Jr. scored on a 2-yard touchdown three plays after Jerry hit tight end Kemori Gamble for a 39-yard gain to the Killian 9-yard line.
The Cougars drove 66 yards on 17 plays, capped by a 3-yard touchdown run by Bentavious Thompson off an option pitch by Antwan Collier.
With Killian’s kicking game struggling most of the season, the Cougars chose to try a two-point conversion and go for the win. Under pressure, Collier’s pass was intercepted by Southridge junior Shawn Davis to seal the outcome.
▪ Glades Day 6, Champagnat Catholic 0 (OT): The Lions’ season ended in disappointment for the second year in a row as they lost a District 8-2A tiebreaker to Glades Day (3-6, 1-2) in overtime at Hilltopper Field. Champagnat (2-7, 1-2) was forced to forfeit its spot in the playoffs last season for leaving the field in the middle of the team’s final regular-season game against IMG Academy.
Village Academy (3-5, 1-2) beat Glades Day 6-0 in the second round of the tiebreaker to secure the runner-up playoff berth behind district champion Dade Christian.
Glades Day running back Dillon McMillan scored the winning touchdown to beat the Lions on a 7-yard rush in overtime. The Tigers were ready to attempt a 42-yard field goal on fourth down, but a series of penalties by Champagnat gave Glades Day a fresh set of downs at the 10-yard line.
Per overtime rules, Champagnat got a possession starting at the 10-yard line with a chance to tie or take the lead after Glades Day scored. Penalties once again cost the Lions, though, and Champagnat failed to convert on fourth down at the 37-yard line.
▪ Ferguson 2, Coral Reef 1: Ramirez goal. Arellano goal. FER 2-0-1.
▪ Braddock 1, North Miami 1: Falcon (BRA) goal.
▪ Miami Country Day 3, St Brendan 0: Martin 2 goals. Garazi goal. Hansen assist. Jean Jacques assist. Ivory save, shutout.
▪ TERRA 4, Doral Academy 0: Bermudez 2 goals. Duran 2 assists.TER 3-0.
▪ Mater Academy 6, North Miami Beach 1: Diaz 3 goals, 2 assists. Ortega 2 goals. Benitez goal, 2 assists. MA 4-1.
▪ Southwest 7, Booker T. Washington 1:Ayala goal, assist. Suarez 2 goals, assist. SW 3-0.
▪ Mast 7, American 0: Tomares 3 goals. Urban goal. Widell goal. MA 2-0.
▪ Archbishop McCarthy 8, North Broward Prep 2: Ribas 4 goals. Encalada goal, 2 assists. Roberts goal. Perez goal.McDonald goal.DeOro assist. Mallardi assist. Cabeza assist. AM 2-0.
▪ Carrollton 8, Pinecrest Prep 0: Diaz-Silveira 2 goals. Sariol 2 goals. CAR 4-0.
▪ Westminster Christian 8, Archimedean 0: Precht 2 goals, assist.Perez 2 goals, 2 assists. Gutierrez goal, 2 assists. Alyssa Kreps shutout.
▪ Miami Springs 8, Mourning 0: Deno 5 goals, 2 assists. S. Gomez 2 goals, assist. B. Gomez 2 assists. MS 2-1.
▪ Douglas 8, Monarch 0: Berins 2 goals. Leif 2 goals. Morris 2 assists. Mowatt 2 assists. Ramsey 2 assists. Friedenburg, Hall shutout. DOU 3-0.
▪ Palmetto 10, Southridge 0:Hyler 3 goals, assist. Gruener 2 goals, 2 assists. Lamas 2 goals, assist. Lang shutout.
▪ Monarch 2, Piper 0:Saturnino goal. Bertho goal. Moreno assist.Ferraz assist.Neves, Cangussu shutout. MON 1-0-0. PIP 0-1-0.
▪ LaSalle 2, North Broward Prep 0: Baptista goal. Muthra goal. Lasalle 1-0. NBP 0-1.
▪ Braddock 2, North Miami 2: Aranguren 2 goals. BRA 0-1-1.
▪ Everglades 3, Coral Glades 0:Beltran 2 goals. Palacios goal. Cuesta 2 assists. EVER 1-0.
▪ Hillel 4, SLAM 0: Goals: Silberman, Lapco, Mizrahi. HIL 2-0.
▪ Calvary Christian Academy 4, Coral Springs Christian 0: Palmar 2 goals. Jacobson goal, assist.
▪ Ransom Everglades 4, Fort Lauderdale Pine Crest 0: Stuart 3 goals. RE 1-0.
▪ Riviera 8, Palm Glades 0: Brown 2 goals. Marconi 2 goals. Leal 2 goals. RP 1-0.
TUESDAY’S PLAYOFF SCHEDULE
Class 3A state championships at Howey-in-the-Hills
Region 3-8A final: Jupiter at Cypres Bay, 7
Region 4-8A final: Ferguson at W.Broward, 7
Region 4-6A final: Sunset at Jensen Beach, 7
Region 4-5A final: Pompano Beach at Orlando Bishop Moore, 7
Region 4-4A final: Ransom Everglades at Cardinal Gibbons, 7
Region 4-3A final: Palmer Trinity at Miami Country Day, 7
Region 3-3A final: Fort Myers Evangelical Christian at Westminster Academy, 7
Region 4-2A final: Divine Savior at Boca Raton Christian, 7