NJSIAA Football Playoff Pairings and Schedule
A total of 26 Shore Conference teams have qualified for the NJSIAA playoffs after the final set of regular season games during Week 9 set the brackets.
The NJSIAA released the official pairings on Sunday. The matchups below are tentative and are subject to change until 5 p.m. Sunday.
The Shore Conference will be represented in 10 different brackets, including all five Central Jersey sections. Central Jersey Group IV features the most Shore Conference teams with six of the eight teams coming from the Shore.
Preliminarily, there will be four all-Shore matchups in the quarterfinals with Point Boro hosting Raritan in Central Jersey Group II, Long Branch facing Middletown South and Brick Memorial squaring off against Jackson Memorial in Central Jersey Group IV and Lacey hosting Lakewood in South Jersey Group III. Three of those four will be rematches from the regular season, including Jackson and Brick Memorial meeting in consecutive weeks.
CENTRAL JERSEY GROUP V
8-Perth Amboy at 1-Manalapan, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-North Brunswick at 4-Freehold Township, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Trenton at 3-Old Bridge, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Hillsborough at 2-South Brunswick, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Piscataway defeated Manalapan to win the bracket last season, but the Chiefs have been realigned to North 2, Group IV…Manalapan has reached either the Central Jersey Group V or IV final in five of the last six seasons…Freehold Township has made the playoffs for the third straight season and is looking to pick up the first postseason win in program history…South Brunswick and Hillsborough each have two sectional titles to tie for the most of any team on the bracket…Perth Amboy made the playoffs for the first time in program history…Manalapan running back Naim Mayfield leads the state with 2,114 yards rushing and 35 rushing touchdowns.
CENTRAL JERSEY GROUP IV
8-Freehold at 1-Nottingham, Saturday at 1 p.m.
5-Brick at 4-Allentown, Friday at 5 p.m.
6-Middletown South at 3-Long Branch, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Jackson Memorial at 2-Brick Memorial, Friday at 7 p.m.
Note: The Shore Conference dominates this section with six of the eight teams and will feature two all-Shore matchups in the first round…Allentown is the defending champion and will face Brick in a rematch of last season’s title game, a 41-6 victory for the Redbirds to claim their first state title…Middletown South has the most sectional titles among the group with 10 while Brick has seven and Jackson Memorial has five…Middletown South won the North 2, Group IV bracket in 2015 with a 12-0 record. The Eagles have made the playoffs 20 straight seasons…Jackson won this bracket in 2015 with a 42-14 win over Brick Memorial and in 2014 with a 21-18 win over Middletown South…Brick won the section in 2013…Brick Memorial defeated Jackson Memorial, 27-21, on Friday in the regular-season finale…Long Branch shut out Middletown South, 21-0, in Week 5…Freehold quarterback Ashante Worthy needs one touchdown to set the Shore Conference single-season record (45)…He currently has 2,039 yards rushing and 1,632 yards passing for 3,671 combined yards, which is believed to be the Shore Conference single-season record.
CENTRAL JERSEY GROUP III
8-Lawrence at 1-Rumson-Fair Haven, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Wall at 4-Steinert, Saturday at 1 p.m.
6-Carteret at 3-Monmouth, Saturday at 1 p.m.
7-Ewing at 2-Somerville, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Rumson is the two-time defending champion in the bracket and has won four straight titles overall. The Bulldogs are trying to become the second Shore Conference program to win five straight NJSIAA sectional championships (Manasquan, 1998-2002, is the other)…Rumson’s defense has held opponents to 8 points per game over their last 19 playoff games dating back to 2010…Somerville’s seven sectional titles are the most of any team in the bracket…Monmouth is making its third playoff appearance in program history and first since 2010. The Falcons will host a playoff game for the first time in program history…Wall was the champion in South Jersey Group III last season and is seeking its fifth sectional title.
CENTRAL JERSEY GROUP II
8-Raritan at 1-Point Boro, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Manasquan at 4-Roselle, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Holmdel at 3-A.L. Johnson, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Hillside at 2-South River, Saturday at 1 p.m.
Notes: Lincoln finished 2-7 but had 81 power points to finish eighth thanks to playing a game against St. Peter’s Prep and receiving 31 power points in defeat. However, a new NJSIAA rule stating teams with a .500 record can jump sub-.500 teams who earn extra power points playing the North Jersey parochial powers enabled Raritan to leapfrog Lincoln and then grab the No. 8 seed over Spotswood based on a 35-0 head-to-head win in Week 8. Simple, right?…Manasquan is the defending champion and has a Shore Conference-record 11 sectional championships…Point Boro enters the playoffs undefeated for the first time since 2005 when it went 12-0 and won the last of its three state titles…Raritan and Point Boro met twice in 2014 with Point Boro winning in the regular season and Raritan taking the playoff matchup en route to a sectional title…South River is 9-0 and has won nine sectional titles overall…Holmdel is making its first playoff appearance since 2007…A Shore Conference team has won this bracket four straight seasons.
CENTRAL JERSEY GROUP I
8-Asbury Park at 1-Burlington City, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Shore at 4-Middlesex, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Florence at 3-Bound Brook, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Point Beach at 2-Manville, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Asbury Park is the defending champion…The top seed was determined by a coin flip at NJSIAA headquarters since Burlington City and Manville finished with the same number of power points (119) and were equal in all tie-breaking criteria…Strength of schedule determined the sixth, seventh and eighth seeds as Asbury Park, Point Beach and Florence each finished with 82 power points…Keansburg made the playoffs at 2-7 last season but missed the cut this year with a 5-3 record…Middlesex edged Shore 22-21 in overtime in Week 6…Shore and Asbury Park each have seven sectional titles, tied for the most in the bracket. Florence has six…A Shore Conference team has won this bracket four straight seasons and nine of the last 10 years…Manville and Bound Brook have never won sectional titles.
SOUTH JERSEY GROUP V
8-Vineland at 1-Lenape, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Cherokee at 4-Howell, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Williamstown at 3-Millville, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Eastern at 2-Rancocas Valley, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Routinely considered the most difficult public bracket in the state, this year’s group features two 8-win teams and three 7-win teams…Millville is the defending champion and enters with a perfect 8-0 record…Both Vineland and Lenape are 7-1 and will meet in the 8 vs. 1 matchup…Howell has one sectional title in its history, which came in 2007 in Central Jersey Group IV…The Rebels reached the semifinals last season…Rancocas Valley features University of Florida recruit Iverson Clement at running back…Cherokee’s 10 sectional titles are the most of any team in the section. The Chiefs’ last title came in 2014…Lenape and Vineland have never won a sectional championship.
SOUTH JERSEY GROUP IV
8-Pennsauken at 1-Moorestown, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Absegami at 4-Shawnee, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Hammonton at 3-Central, Friday at 7 p.m.
7-Highland at 2-Burlington Township, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Timber Creek won this bracket the last two seasons but is now in South Jersey Group III…Central has never won a sectional title and made its only championship-game appearance in 1994…Shawnee is the team in the bracket with the most recent state title. The Renegades went 11-1 and won the bracket in 2014.
SOUTH JERSEY GROUP III
8-Seneca at 1-Timber Creek, Friday at 7 p.m.
5-Ocean City at 4-Delsea, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Lakewood at 3-Lacey, Saturday at 1 p.m.
7-Deptford at 2-Woodrow Wilson, Saturday at 1 p.m.
Notes: Seneca won the tiebreaker over Triton for the No. 8 seed based on strength of schedule…Wall was the 2016 sectional champion but is now in Central Jersey Group III…Timber Creek was last season’s South Jersey Group IV champion and is on an incredible run that includes two straight state titles, four titles in six years, six straight finals appearances and a current 20-game winning streak. Chargers quarterback Devin Leary, a North Carolina State recruit, is New Jersey’s career passing yards leader…Lacey and Lakewood met in Week 5 with Lacey winning a 34-33 thriller…Lacey has won four sectional titles, its last championship coming in 2010…Lakewood has made six straight playoff appearances. The Piners’ only state title came in 1986…The bracket also features Delsea, which won this bracket four straight years from 2012 to 2015 and was in the finals last season. The Crusaders have 13 sectional titles all-time…Ocean City and Deptford each have won four sectional championships.
NON-PUBLIC GROUP III
5-Camden Catholic at 4-St. John Vianney, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Red Bank Catholic at 3-St. Joseph (Montvale), Saturday at 1 p.m.
7-Donovan Catholic at 2-Pope John, Saturday at 1 p.m.
Notes: Bishop Ahr, Bishop Eustace and Pingry all opted out of the playoffs, leaving just seven teams in the section and allowing Donovan Catholic to qualify as the No. 7 seed and giving DePaul a bye into the semifinals…St. Joseph (Montvale) is the defending champion and has 18 sectional titles in program history. Pope John also has 18 sectional titles all-time…Red Bank Catholic won the state title in 2014…St. John Vianney reached the final in 2015 and the semifinals last season…Donovan Catholic has only one playoff win in program history.
NON-PUBLIC GROUP II
8-St. Mary (Rutherford) at 1-St. Joseph (Hammonton), Saturday at 1 p.m.
5-Immaculata at 4-Hudson Catholic, Friday at 7 p.m.
6-Holy Cross at 3-Mater Dei Prep, Saturday at 1 p.m.
7-Gloucester Catholic at 2-Holy Spirit, Friday at 7 p.m.
Notes: Mater Dei Prep is the defending champion…St. Joseph (Hammonton) has won 25 sectional titles and made 33 finals appearances in its program history.
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