Another week in, and another crop of surprising results and major showdowns where only one ranked team could possibly survive. As the days grow shorter, so does the list of national title contenders, with a handful of potential outliers falling by the RivalsHigh 100 wayside after a heated weekend of near non-stop playoff intensity.
• No. 18 Bellevue (Wash.) 35, No. 19 Lakes (Wash.) 14: This game was hyped as the best remaining possible game on the Washington state slate, but Bellevue proved it's not only the clear-cut most talented squad in the state, but also one of the nation's more underrated teams with a dominant win from start to finish, in every facet of the game.
• No. 91 Upper St. Clair (Penn.) 28, No. 25 Pittsburgh (Penn.) Central Catholic 24: It wasn't enough that Upper St. Clair -- a talented but not entirely overwhelming squad -- pulled off what may be the shocker of the Western Pennsylvania season by knocking off one of the nation's best teams in the playoffs. Rather, they pulled off that significant feat without the use of their starting quarterback, mounting a fourth quarter rally from a 14-13 deficit behind backup passer Pete Coughlin to emerge with a huge win in a WPIAL rivalry grudge match.A video or other embedded content has been hidden. Click here to view it.
• No. 14 Grayson (Ga.) 25, Lowndes (Ga.) 17: Robert Nkemdiche is one of the nation's most prominent junior prospects because of what he does on defense, as he proved with three sacks in his squad's huge win against Lowndes on Friday. Yet, in this case, Nkemdiche may have had an even bigger impact on offense, with the big bruiser getting rare time as a running back, carrying the ball 16 times for 61 yards and three Grayson touchdowns as the Georgia sleeper continued to prove it belongs higher and higher in the national rankings.
• No. 85 Cincinnati (Ohio) St. Xavier 35, No. 84 Cincinnati (Ohio) Archbishop Moeller 21: The rematch of this earlier heated Catholic face off went to the Bombers, with St. Xavier rallying from an early 7-0 deficit to take a dominant, 21-7 lead at halftime and never look back, earning a state semifinal berth as a result.