HUNTINGTON — Apparently, Kirtland, West Lafayette Ridgewood, Oak Harbor and Pemberville Eastwood are Ironton’s chief competition for a Division V state championship.
Those teams, in that order, are ranked ahead of the Fighting Tigers (9-1) in Division V in the Ohio Associated Press high school football poll, released Monday.
Kirtland (10-0) is No. 1 and garnered 17 of 18 first-place votes, good for 179 points. West Lafayette Ridgewood (10-0, 132), which entertains Portsmouth (8-2) at 7 p.m. Saturday in the first round of the playoffs, is second. Oak Harbor (10-0, 114) is third and Pemberville East (10-0, 110) fourth. Ironton (9-1, 103) picked up the other first-place vote and is fifth.
The Fighting Tigers open the postseason vs. Wellston (7-3) at 7 p.m. Saturday at Tanks Memorial Stadium.
Defending state champion Orrville (9-1, 91) is sixth, followed in the top 10 by West Liberty-Salem (9-1, 61), West Jefferson (9-1, 53), Cincinnati Taft (9-1, 33) and Findlay Liberty-Benton (9-1, 18).
Symmes Valley received votes in Division VII to rank 12th. The Vikings play at Shadyside at 7 p.m. Saturday in their playoff opener.
In Division IV, Gallia Academy (9-1) received enough votes to tie with Waverly for 14th. The Blue Devils and Tigers will break that tie at 7 p.m. Saturday when they meet in the first round of the playoffs at Waverly.