As the high school football season enters mid-October, the top teams have now separated themselves from the pack. Playoff positioning is on the line from this point forward.
Here is a look at the best teams in the area as we enter the home stretch of the 2019 regular season.
1) Bartram Trail (6-0)
Bartram Trail remained undefeated after a thrilling 29-27 win last week over Ponte Vedra. The Bears were trailing in the final minute and called the hook and ladder play which resulted in the game winning touchdown in one of the best finishes in Northeast Florida this season.
Bartram Trail is back into district play this week vs. Nease, but with those two gigantic district games against Oakleaf and Sandalwood on the horizon, will there be a look ahead factor Friday?
2) Lake City Columbia (6-0)
Last week the Columbia Tigers remained perfect on the season with a hard fought 32-21 win over a very good Madison County team.
This Friday night is a district title game against Lee. Both teams are more than likely postseason bound, but the winner this Friday will receive a much easier route as they will play home playoff games as opposed to traveling.
It’s also likely this game between Columbia and Lee is simply part one with the sequel happening in the playoffs.
3) Oakleaf (5-1)
After a much deserved bye week, Oakleaf dives right back into it this week in a huge district matchup vs. Mandarin.
For Oakleaf it’s pretty simple, they win their next two games and they are District 1-8A champions, but that will be easier said than done.
Next week Oakleaf plays an undefeated Bartram Trail team and this week the Knights play host to the defending 8A state champions in Mandarin, a team in a must-win scenario this Friday.
4) Fleming Island (5-0)
After huge district victories over Fletcher and Creekside, the Golden Eagles of Fleming Island had a much deserved bye week last week. They are now rested for the home stretch of the season which begins this Friday night against First Coast.
With three district games remaining against First Coast, Gainesville Buchholz and Atlantic Coast, Fleming Island needs two wins to become District 2-7A champions.
Fleming Island is clearly in the driver’s seat for that district title, but after this 5-0 start, they may be thinking bigger than a district title at Fleming island.
5) Bolles (5-1)
After losing their season opener, the Bulldogs have now rattled off five straight wins, beating their last five opponents by an average of 30 points.
This five game win streak includes wins over St. Augustine and Creekside, both impressive.
Bolles is off this week resting up for the home stretch of their season which begins on October 18 when they take on Clay.
Those who just missed out on the top five.
Lee (4-2) Surprising loss last week to Ribault knocked the Generals out of the top five. A win over Lake City Columbia this week would put them right back in.
Westside (5-1) One of the biggest surprises in the area to this point.
West Nassau (5-1) They have won four games in a row and are playing their best football of the season.
University Christian (5-1) All they do is win at UC and at 5-1 on the season, they have not lost to a team from the state of Florida this season.
Ponte Vedra (5-1) It might be safe to say that the Sharks 29-27 loss to Bartram Trail last week is as impressive, if not more so, than their five victories this season.
(You can follow Ryan Green on Twitter @RyanGreen1010XL)