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Historic night in Pike County area

Next Friday will be a historic day in Pike County. When the AHSAA and AISA playoffs open Nov. 7 all four Pike County area teams will partake in postseason action for the first time ever.

Since the Alabama Independent Schools Association was formed in 1970 there have been many years where three of the area teams made the playoffs, but there is not one year since all four were playing past the regular season.

Last year was one of those more than 15 years that saw three teams in the playoffs, with the Goshen Eagles barely missing out. But 2008 will go down in the history books as a historic year.

The No. 5 Pike Liberal Arts School Patriots clinched the AISA Class AAA, Region 1 title last Friday and will host Region 2 No. 4 seed Marengo Academy Nov. 7.

The Charles Henderson Trojans will also host the first round of the playoffs, as they clinched the AHSAA Class 5A, Region 2 No. 2 seed last Friday. They will host Region 1 No. 3 seed Citronelle next Friday.

After a tough loss last Friday, the AHSAA Class 3A, Region 2 No. 3 seed Pike County Bulldogs will travel down the road and square off with the Region 1 No. 2 seed Luverne Tigers Nov. 7.

The Goshen Eagles also hit the road Nov. 7 as the No. 4 seed out of AHSAA Class 2A, Region 3. They draw Region 4 No. 1 seed Pickens County for next Friday.

No matter what happens in the four games, all teams involved will be able to know they were part of a historic night in the county.

For Pike Liberal it is their first region championship since they won two straight from 1995-96. It is the first trip to the postseason for the Eagles since they won a region crown in 2001.

All four of these teams have played great throughout the year and it is great to see them all have success. This was not to be expected in the beginning of the year because all these teams faced adversity through the year, but they came out on top.

The Trojans had to win their final region game just to make the playoffs and they will now host a game.

The Bulldogs have suffered at home, but they will hit the road for the first round of the playoffs.

The story of the Goshen Eagles is something else. They only scored close to 60 points in their first four games, but then they scored more than 200 points in their next five to clinch a playoff spot.

Pike Lib suffered a tough home loss to rival Lee-Scott, but turned around and handily took care of the defending Class AAA champion Bessemer Rebels and region foe Macon-East the next two weeks.

All in all it should be a great next couple of weeks in the Pike County area. The fans of the four teams would not complain at all if all four teams made some more history and brought back state titles.

The playoff action opens next Friday and it should be a sight to see across the state.

Matt Nascone is the sports editor for The Messenger. He can be reached at 670-6315 or online at matt.nascone@troymessenger.com.