Distant preparation football district traps Brookfield this fall

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By PAUL STURM, LCL Sports Editor

When the Missouri State High School Activities Association unveiled its fall 2021 athletic classifications and district assignments on August 27, the top hot topic for Linn County school teams was Brookfield’s football allowance.

Still a candidate to bounce west or east through its north-central geography, Brookfield this year finds itself aligned with just five other Class 2 schools stretching from far northwest Missouri (Maryville) to the extreme northeast (Palmyra, Kahoka) with BHS and two others in between.

The reunification reflects Maryville, a perennial state power in the ranks of Classes 2 and 3 over the past decade and more, landing in the smallest group this year. The popular perception is that the downsizing in 8-a-side football by another half-dozen or more previously class 1 schools to 11 males has shifted some schools from class 2 to class 1 and, that’s not Coincidentally, some teams from ex-Class 3 into Class 2, with Maryville and the 2021 powerhouse, Richmond among them.

With just six teams assigned to District 7 Class 2 with Brookfield – Trenton, Macon, Palmyra, Clark County and Maryville, that means the District’s playoff quarterfinal will consist of just two games, while the leader and runner-up of the regular season sit out the first week with byes.

With Brookfield squeaking through Trenton in overtime last week, BHS has taken a significant advantage. If those two land in the bottom two spots in the district standings, as seems a reasonable scenario, it doesn’t matter if Trenton, with its small schools schedule in the Grand River Conference-East, is doing better in the ratings than Brookfield, BHS will get the top seed (No.5) and, potentially, the less formidable first-round foe due to their head-to-head triumph over THS.

The only other school in the county with a football schedule – Marceline – is largely the status quo for playoff action.

With his surprisingly narrow victory over another member of the District, the now well-hidden County of Scotland, the reigning District Champion is a strong candidate to repeat as the District 6 Class 1 seed. However, South The historically salty Shelby cannot be ruled out, especially taking into account the bonus points he will get most weeks while playing a predominantly Class 2 schedule.

With a district of 7 schools – Salisbury, Westran, Ewing: Highland and Paris are the others, who will once again provide the best team in the regular season with time off for the district’s quarterfinals in Week 10 of the season .

Looking at the other sports – softball, golf, volleyball, and distance running – in which some or all of the four Linn County schools compete in the fall playoffs, the biggest implication is softball.

In the sport, Marceline and Brookfield share residency in District 5 Class 2 with six other teams – Hamilton: Penney, Trenton, Putnam County, Milan, Gallatin and South Harrison of Bethany. Marceline’s Lady Tigers are among the top contenders for the district crown and perhaps the favorite.

In Class 1, naturally, Linn County R-1 and Meadville were placed in the same District – No. 5. It will only have five members in total, the others being Atlanta, Bevier and Bucklin.

The girls’ golf teams from Brookfield and Marceline have been assigned to 15 Class 1 schools in District 3 in an attempt to qualify for the state tournament. Others in this district include Trenton, Westran, Tina-Avalon, Salisbury, Schuyler County, Richmond, Putnam County, Princeton, Cairo, Macon, La Plata, Harrisburg and Glasgow.

Brookfield has the only county programs in volleyball and cross country running. The MSHSAA has yet to establish cross-country rankings and districts, but the Lady Bulldogs volleyball team will consist of 5 members from Class 2, District 16 with Hamilton, Trenton, South Harrison and St. Joseph. : Bishop LeBlond.


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