Four prep football teams out of Class 1A Division I’s super-competitive Whitepine League were included as state playoff participants when the Idaho High School Activities Association released its postseason brackets early Sunday.
Class 4A Moscow qualified with an at-large berth, while two from the Whitepine League D-II ranks also will see their seasons continue.
Prairie, the classification’s top seed, secured a bye to the 1ADI quarterfinals with ease.
The defending state champion Pirates (6-0, 5-0), whose closest game this year was a 40-point win, begin state play on Nov. 6 or 7, either inside Moscow’s Kibbie Dome or at home in Cottonwood, coach Ryan Hasselstrom said.
Prairie faces the lowest-ranked team to advance out of the opening round, which starts Friday and continues through Saturday.
Kamiah clinched No. 2 in the WPL and its spot in the 12-team playoffs with a 16-0 home win against Clearwater Valley on Friday. The No. 7 Kubs (6-2, 4-2), back at State for the first time in five years, host Lapwai at 7 p.m. Friday.
The Wildcats, despite owning just two victories in five games this season — against one-win WPL opponents Potlatch and Troy — snuck in as the No. 10 seed via their ranking in the new MaxPreps computer selection system.
To kick off their third straight trip to the playoffs, the eighth-seeded Rams from Kooskia (5-3, 4-2) meets No. 9 Grace (3-4, 2-0 High Desert Conference) at Parma High School at 1 p.m. Pacific on Saturday, CV athletic director/football coach Allen Hutchens confirmed. The teams elected to split the difference for travel.
The 4A Bears (3-1, 1-1 Inland Empire League), the No. 13 seed in the 16-team field, must journey 400 miles south to Jerome to take on the fourth-ranked Tigers (7-2, 6-0 Great Basin) at 6 p.m. Pacific on Friday.
Moscow began its season about a month late because of local coronavirus concerns, but impressive wins in its shortened campaign against IEL rival Lakeland and 5A Lewiston — its first defeat of the Bengals in six years — proved enough.
If the Bears topple Jerome, they’ll either play Hillcrest (Ammon) or have a rematch with league foe Sandpoint, which handed Moscow its only loss this year.
Kendrick (5-1, 3-0), the WPL D-II’s champion for a third consecutive season, will get the winner of a first-round matchup between Watersprings (Idaho Falls) and Hansen in the quarterfinals on Nov. 6 or 7. A site and game time are to be determined.
Timberline of Weippe is back in the postseason after a hiatus spanning at least a decade, perhaps two. The surprise Spartans (3-3, 2-1) open State at 6 p.m. Pacific on Friday at Dietrich (7-0, 3-0 Sawtooth Conference).
Grangeville (3-2, 1-0) and St. Maries (2-1, 1-0) square off in the 2A Central Idaho League finale at 7 p.m. Friday in Grangeville. The winner will be crowned the CIL champion, and claim the league’s lone bid to State.