Siloam Springs' football team isn't paying attention to the scenarios this week. Just the results.
The Panthers host Russellville for senior night at Panther Stadium on Friday in a game that will help determine the final No. 3, 4 and 5 playoff seeds from the 6A-West Conference.
6A-West Playoff Scenarios
• Siloam Springs earns the No. 3 seed with a win over Russellville and an El Dorado loss to Little Rock Hall OR if El Dorado wins but has the least amount of tiebreaker pointers in its three-way tie with Russellville and Siloam Springs. That would leave Siloam Springs as the third seed, followed by Russellville and El Dorado.
• Siloam Springs is the No. 4 seed with a win over Russellville if Russellville is the team in the three-way tie with the least amount of tiebreaker points. That would make El Dorado the third seed, Siloam Springs the fourth and Russellville the fifth.
• The Panthers are the No. 5 seed with a loss OR a win over Russellville, but Siloam Springs is the team with the least amount of tiebreaker points in a three-way tie with Russellville and El Dorado. That would cause Russellville to be the third seed, El Dorado the fourth and Siloam Spring the fifth seed.
Russellville at Siloam Springs
Kickoff^7 p.m. Friday
Broadcast^Siloam Springs High School Athletics on YouTube
Records^Russellville, 6-3, 4-2 6A-West
Siloam Springs, 5-4, 3-3 6A-West
6A-West Conference football standings
Siloam Springs 49, LR Hall 8
Greenwood 42, Sheridan 14
Benton 34, Lake Hamilton 24
Russellville 21, El Dorado 19
This week’s games
Russellville at Siloam Springs
Benton at Sheridan
El Dorado at LR Hall
Lake Hamilton at Greenwood
Russellville (6-3, 4-2) is currently in third place with El Dorado (4-5, 3-3) and Siloam Springs tied for fourth heading into Friday. However, a Siloam Springs victory over Russellville and El Dorado victory over Little Rock Hall could thrust the trio into a three-way tie.
In that scenario, Siloam Springs would need to beat Russellville by 11 points or more to earn the fourth seed and a home playoff game on Nov. 9.
There are scenarios where Siloam Springs could earn the third seed, but it would require El Dorado to lose to Hall (1-8, 0-6) or win by only a few points, neither of which is likely.
A Panthers loss would give Siloam Springs the fifth seed and Russellville would earn the third outright.
With all the scenarios in play, the Panthers are only focused on one goal.
"Our only goal is to win the game on Friday night," said Siloam Springs coach Brandon Craig. "That's our focus. That's what we're going to put our effort toward."
Craig pointed out that a win for Siloam Springs over Russellville would guarantee the Panthers a winning season. The Panthers' haven't had a winning record since 2011 when they went 6-4.
"That's one of our team goals this year is to have a winning season," Craig said. "If we go out and win this game that will help us to complete that goal."
But the Panthers don't want to stop there. They want to win Friday's game and make some noise in the playoffs.
"I don't think anybody's satisfied right now with where we're at," Craig said. "We're wanting to move the needle and have a winning program. To do that we need to keep working, keep coaching hard and keep playing hard. There's absolutely no one in our building that's satisfied with where we're at right now."
Siloam Springs is in good shape physically heading into this week's game with injuries at a minimum.
The message to the Panthers is a simple one, Craig said.
"Rise to the challenge," Craig said. "That's what I would say. This is something you put yourself in a position to have an opportunity to play a meaningful game in Week 10. This is the time to rise up and give your best effort and play your best game."
The Panthers will play a Russellville team that picked up a 21-19 win at a banged up El Dorado team this past Friday.
The Cyclones picked up nonconference wins against Morrilton (28-23) and Alma (31-0), but they lost to Springdale Har-Ber 27-7.
The Cyclones lost to Benton 27-0 to open conference play, but rebounded to beat Sheridan 21-0 and Lake Hamilton 28-14. Russellville lost to Greenwood 51-7 in Week 7 but beat Hall 48-0 in Week 8 heading into the matchup at El Dorado.
"Impressive thing to go down to somebody else's place like El Dorado and win, no doubt," Craig said. "I think both of our teams are real similar."
The Cyclones are led by quarterback Rhett Adkins, who has completed 112 of 207 passes (54 percent) for 1,341 yards, eight touchdowns and six interceptions. Adkins also has rushed 124 times for 283 yards and six touchdowns.
Russellville's top receiving target has been senior Jaiden Palmer, who has 49 receptions for 721 yards and seven touchdowns. Kade England leads the team in rushing for 116 carries for 505 yards and three TDs.
"I think their QB is obviously one of their best players and someone we'll have to contain both in the running game and in the passing game," Craig said. "They've got a nice wide receiver (Palmer). He's their No. 1 target. He's a very good athlete, makes a lot of plays in space and someone we're going to have to do a great job on."
Defensively he said the Cyclones won't let the Panthers have anything easy, Craig said.
"They're a lot of pressures," he said. "They're a lot of different pressures. They bring a lot of people a lot of the time. We're going to have to be really alert to that and make sure we're aware of where the pressure is coming from and do our best to stop all that from affecting us."
Siloam Springs is led offensively by senior running back Kaiden Thrailkill, who has 240 carries for 1,300 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Quarterback Landon Ellis has completed 87 of 178 passes (48.8 percent) for 1,148 yards, eight touchdowns and seven interceptions. He's rushed 62 times for 206 yards.
Ellis' top target in the passing game has been junior Gage Weaver with 26 receptions for 364 yards. Senior Primo Agbehi has been a big play threat with nine catches for 311 yards, an average of 34.5 yards per catch, and five touchdowns.
"I think there's a lot of similarities between our teams," Craig said. "I think that both teams are fighting for the same thing, so it's going to be a great game to come out and watch."
Sports on 10/30/2018
Print Headline: Panthers' only goal is to win