8 Three Rivers Conference teams qualify for IHSA state football playoffs


MENDOTA – Eight Three Rivers Conference teams will participate in the IHSA football playoffs for the 2021 season. Five teams from the East Division are in the mix and three teams from the West Division will participate in the post season.

Out of the East Division, Mendota will make its first playoff appearance since the 2014 season. The 14th-seeded Trojans (5-4) will travel to No. 3 seed Pecatonica to take on the Durand-Pecatonica co-op (8-1) in Class 3A. The game is set for Saturday, Oct. 30 at 1 p.m. The winner of that game will advance to the second round to take on either Monmouth-Roseville or Elmhurst (Immaculate Conception). Also in Class 3A, 15th-seeded Poplar Grove (North Boone) (5-4) will journey to take on Princeton (8-1), which received the second seed. Game time is 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29. The winner will move on to play either Chicago (King) or Fairbury (Prairie Central). Out of the West Division, 11th-seeded Monmouth-Roseville (6-3) will make the long trek to Elmhurst to battle Immaculate Conception (8-1), the sixth seed, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29.

In Class 1A, St. Bede (7-2) was seeded fifth and gets to host 12th-seeded Chicago (Hope Academy) (6-3). Kickoff is at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29. The survivor of that contest will advance to play either Colfax (Ridgeview) or Rushville-Industry.

A trio of Three Rivers teams are in the Class 2A bracket. Sterling Newman (6-3) was seeded ninth and is at eighth-seeded Aledo (Mercer County (6-3) at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30, with the winner taking on either Chicago (Julian) or Wilmington in round two. West Division member Erie-Prophetstown (7-2) was seeded fifth and will entertain Clifton (Central) (6-3), the 12th seed, at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30. That winner takes on the survivor of the Kankakee (Bishop McNamara) vs. Knoxville game. Another West Division team, 15th-seeded Taylor Ridge (Rockridge) (5-4) will be on the road at No. 2 seed Downs (Tri-Valley) (9-0) for a 1 p.m. start on Saturday, Oct. 30. The winner moves on to the second round to tangle with either Chicago (North Lawndale Charter) or Mackinaw (Deer Creek-M.).

In Class 4A, Kewanee (8-1) secured the third seed and will host Plano (6-3), the 14th seed, at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30. The winner will go up against either Dixon or Chicago (Phillips) in a second-round match-up.