The Albany and Springfield football teams now know their playoff fates.
For the Hornets, there will be at least another week to the season. For the Bulldogs, the season has come to an end after the Louisiana High School Athletic Association revealed the playoff brackets Sunday.
Albany (5-5) garnered the No. 28 seed in the Class 3A bracket and will travel to face No. 5 Caldwell Parish in the first round of the playoffs.
“I thought we would be No. 26 or No. 28, and it just depended on the results of Springfield’s game and DeQuincy’s game, and it happened that both of those lost, so we dropped to 10.189 in the power points, which moved us below two teams,” Albany coach Mike Janis said. “It’s a road game. Whether we had won Friday night or not, we’d still be going on the road in the first round. It’s not as far as we had to go last year (North Webster), which is a benefit.”
In Class 2A, Springfield (4-6) finished at No. 33 in the power rankings, just missing a spot in the 32-team field.
The Bulldogs went into last week’s game at Northlake Christian at No. 28, but a 31-7 loss to the Wolverines played a part in knocking them out of the postseason.
Albany, meanwhile, will face Caldwell Parish (9-1), which won the District 3-3A title with a 35-34 overtime victory over Marksville on Friday and has won five straight games.
“It’s not just an overtime win, but a game where they were trailing by 21 points in the second half,” Janis said. “They shut Marksville out in the second half. Marksville scored on the first play of overtime and decided to go for two after Caldwell Parish had scored on, I think, fourth down and long in overtime. Then they kicked the extra point. Marksville scored on the very first play and elected to go for two and didn’t get it, and Caldwell Parish won. It’s a big comeback win for them.”
Janis is hopeful Albany's trip to DeQuincy earlier this season will give his team an idea of what to expect on the roughly 3 ½-hour trip to Caldwell Parish, which is located in Columbia.
“I think having that experience and making that trip already is going to help,” Janis said. “It’s not something that’s brand new to our kids. It’s something they have experience with, so I think that game against DeQuincy and that travel will benefit us.”
Albany's coming off a 42-7 road loss to Hannan, but Janis said the postseason provides the Hornets with a new opportunity.
“You’re going into the playoffs,” he said. “If you’re not excited to be in this situation, then you’re in the wrong sport. There’s a lot of questions I’ve been asking myself as to what happened Friday night with our football team, and we’re going to try to get that figured out this week in practice. What I told the team Friday was that performance is not indicative of the hard work that we’ve put in this season and the football team that we are. It’s something that we’re going to have to rebound from.”