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Three Rivers sends eight teams to the playoffs

Playoff notebook

The Three Rivers Conference is sending eight teams to the playoffs, including five from the TRAC East.

In addition to the Princeton and St. Bede games, here is a look at the other matchups for the Three Rivers teams:

In 2A, No. 9 Newman (6-3) travels to No. 8 Aledo Mercer County (6-3) and No. 15 Rockridge (5-4) plays at No. 2 Down Tri-Valley (9-0) on Saturday, while No. 5 Erie-Prophetstown (7-2) hosts No. 12 Clifton Central (6-3). Rockridge posted a 49-28 must-win over Orion Friday to qualify and send the Chargers (4-5) home.

In 3A, No. 14 Mendota (5-4) makes its first playoff appearance since 2014, traveling to No. 3 Durand-Pecatonica (8-1) at 1 p.m. Saturday. Also in 3A, No. 11 Monmouth-Roseville (6-3) travels to No. 6 IC Catholic (8-1), whose winner is a potential semifinal matchup for Princeton

In 4A, No. 3 Kewanee (8-1) hosts No. 14 Plano (6-3) on Saturday. The Boilermakers had their first 8-0 start since the 1940s before falling at Newman last week. Their eight wins are their most since the 1999 season.

In other area Friday games of interest, No. 16 Annawan-Wethersfield (5-4) is at No. 1 Abingdon (8-1), which beat the Titans 34-12 in Week 5, in 1A, and No. 15 L-P (5-4) travels to No. 2 Morris (9-0), a team it lost to 31-7 two weeks ago, in 5A.

No. 4 Sterling (7-2) will hosts No. 13 Chicago St. Patrick (5-4) in 5A at 2 p.m. Saturday.

Quick counts

• St. Bede has won just three of their last 11 first-round games, including 2003, 2011 and 2016. The Bruins deepest advancement in the playoffs was a 2A semifinal appearance in 2001.

• Princeton is the second largest school in 3A with an enrollment of 546 behind Benton (548).

• Princeton gained a share of their third straight conference championship with Kewanee’s loss at Newman Friday night, both finishing 5-1 in TRAC East play. The Boilermakers the official league representative in the playoffs, having defeated the Tigers this year.

• Princeton’s opponent, North Boone, has made 19th playoff appearances, including three straight. It has an enrollment of 466, 90 less than PHS.