The playoffs are almost here.
That might be hard to believe, but the YAIAA tournaments (for every sport except tennis) start the second week of May, and the District 3 playoffs kick off the week after that. That means teams still fighting to qualify for each need to take advantage of this week's games.
With that in mind, here's some key matchups to keep an eye on from May 2 through 7.
Gettysburg at Littlestown, 4:15 p.m. Monday: There's a logjam at the top of Division III, where Eastern York is in first place but Gettysburg, York Suburban and Littlestown are all just one win behind the Golden Knights. Several games in the next two weeks will determine which team wins the title, including Monday's contest between the Warriors and Thunderbolts. After starting out 0-4, Gettysburg has come on strong the past few weeks but lost to Eastern York, 9-7, on Friday. Littlestown will be looking for payback after losing to the Warriors, 3-2, on April 12. Another close game is very likely.
South Western at Spring Grove, 4:15 p.m. Wednesday: Spring Grove entered the season as the favorite in Division I, but the Rockets have been in a bit of a slide since an April 14 loss to South Western. Just 2-6 in their last eight games, the Rockets (7-3, 7-8) are still in second place behind Dallastown in the division standings and play the Wildcats for the second time this season on Monday. But their Wednesday rematch against South Western will also be important, with both teams gunning to make districts. Expected to be more of a rebuilding team this season, the Mustangs (7-8, 6-5 Division I) have been solid and are in third place in Division I.
Kennard-Dale at Littlestown, 4:15 p.m. Monday: The Thunderbolts (11-1, 9-0 Division III) have been cruising through Division III this season and nearly have their second straight division title locked up. The only team still in the picture is Kennard-Dale, which lost to Littlestown, 7-2, on April 12. If the Rams hope to win the title, they'll have to find a way to beat the Thunderbolts in Monday's rematch. It won't be an easy feat.
Kennard-Dale at New Oxford, 7:30 p.m. Monday: The Colonials (7-4) won their first seven games and looked like a league contender early on, but they have dropped four straight games and struggled against league powers York Catholic and Susquehannock. On Monday, New Oxford will have a chance to redeem itself against another top team in Kennard-Dale. The Rams (12-1) are led by star attacker Maddie Day and have only lost to York Catholic this season. Playing them will be another big test for Braxtin Reddinger and the Colonials.
YAIAA tournaments at South Western, 4 p.m. Monday, and 3 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday: After the YAIAA singles champions are crowned Monday, the first two rounds of the doubles tournaments kick off Tuesday at South Western (Class AAA) and at Red Lion (Class AA). The doubles semifinals, finals and consolation rounds for both classes will take place Wednesday at South Western. In Class AAA, keep an eye on Dallastown's pairing of Holden Koons and Hunter Jones and South Western's duo of Ben Sentz and Gavin Kenny. Koons and Sentz are the top two ranked players in YAIAA Class AAA.
Track and field
Gettysburg at Eastern York, 3:45 p.m. Wednesday: Gettysburg's boys' team (6-0) has already clinched a share of the Division II title, but the Golden Knights (5-1) can split it with them by winning Wednesday. The match could also be closely contested on the girls' side, where Eastern York (6-0) has clinched a share of the title but the Warriors (4-1) remain alive. A few athletes to watch are Gettysburg triple jumpers Ravaughn Dillard and Hannah Baddick, and Eastern York runners Madison Nalls (800), Maddie McLain (1,600, 3,200) and Hannah Myers (400).