Week 4 means the race for playoff berths is on with the first district games of the 2023 season.
And Thursday is the big night for games with schools out in Orange and Seminole Counties on Friday.
The top district doozies include Jones at Edgewater, Seminole-Evans, Ocoee-Olympia and Lake Brantley at Lake Mary on Thursday night.
Games kick off at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted.
Rankings in matchup lines are from the Sentinel Super 16.
Overall and district win-loss records are in parentheses.
Refresh frequently for SentinelVarsity.com updates as games unfold.
Thursday’s top matchups
No. 4 Jones (1-2, 0-0) at No. 1 Edgewater (3-0, 0-0)
Coverage by J.C. Carnahan
Edgewater is No. 2 and Jones No. 3 in the MaxPreps 3M state rankings going into this Class 3M (Metro) District 3 opener.
The Tigers are facing their fourth consecutive state-ranked team
The Eagles are 3-2 vs. Jones since this storied Metro Conference rivalry resumed in 2019. That included splitting two games last year (Jones won the playoff rematch).
No. 3 Seminole (2-1, 0-0) at No. 12 Evans (2-1, 0-0)
Coverage by Chris Martucci
Seminole lost 14-9 last week at Treasure Coast (3-0), the top-ranked team in 4S, but remains No. 2 in the MaxPreps Class 4M state rankings going into this District 2 game.
Seminole crushed the Trojans 51-0 a year ago in the first meeting of storied programs since 2014.
Standout Evans senior safety Brandon Jacob is expected to play tonight after missing the past two games.
Lake Brantley (1-2, 0-0) at No. 5 Lake Mary (2-0, 0-0)
Coverage by Max Gamarra
This 42nd edition of the “Mayor’s Cup” rivalry is also an important Class 4M District 2 game.
Lake Brantley stopped an 0-7 streak against the Rams when it won 22-21 at home a year ago on a two-point conversion run in the fourth quarter of a game played at Brantley on a Saturday morning.
The Patriots lead the series 23-18 since 1983.
Lake Mary is No. 6 in the MaxPreps Class 4M rankings.
No. 7 Ocoee (2-1, 0-0) at No. 9 Olympia (2-1, 0-0)
Coverage by Chris Hays
Important clash in a 4M District 5 race where four of the five teams are in MaxPreps top 10: Seminole, Apopka, West Orange and Ocoee (No. 9). Olympia sits at No. 16.
Olympia leads this series 8-5 but Ocoee is 4-0 vs. the Titans since 2018.
Ocoee sophomore Michael McClenton goes into the game leading the state in sacks with 12 according to MaxPreps.
Both teams have won twice since losing season openers.
No. 11 West Orange (1-2) at No. 14 Wekiva (1-2)
Coverage by Philip Rossman-Reich
This is a non-district game within the Metro Conference.
West Orange is No. 7 in 4M. Wekiva is No. 15 in 3M per MaxPreps’ rankings.
The series is tied 7-7.
No. 13 Lake Minneola (1-2, 0-0) at East Ridge (2-0, 0-0)
This is a Class 4S (Suburban) District 6 game.
Lake Minneola overpowered the Knights 60-6 last year to up its lead to 8-4 in the Lake County rivalry. The Hawks have won the past five.
Lake Minneola lost its first two games vs. 3-0 teams: Bradenton Manatee and Ocala Vanguard.
Dr. Phillips (1-2, 0-0) at Windermere High (3-0, 0-0)
Coverage by Nate Marrero
Class 4M District 5 opener at Deputy Scott Pine Community Park, just down from the road from Windermere.
Second-year Wolverines head coach Riki Smith was a longtime assistant in the glory years for DP.
Windermere, 2-8 in 2022, set a school record for wins in a season with its third victory last week.
Friday’s top matchups
Lakeland (1-2) at Kissimmee Osceola (0-3)
Coverage by J. Daniel Pearson
Records can be deceiving.
Lakeland is No. 2 and Osceola No. 9 in the MaxPreps rankings for 4S.
The Dreadnauts lost to 2M No. 2 Miami Norland 48-34 and Pennsylvania No. 1 St. Joseph’s Prep of Philadelphia 45-24.
Lakeland edged Osceola 25-22 in the regular season and 14-7 in a state semifinal rematch last year.
The Dreadnaughts are 6-1 vs. Osceola in regular season games since 2002 and lead 5-4 in playoff meetings.
Pine Ridge (2-0) at The First Academy (3-0)
Coverage by Philip Rossman-Reich
Class 3S Pine Ridge is off to a 2-0 start for the first time since 2017.
TFA, No. 12 in MaxPreps 2M rankings, has made the playoffs 22 times in the past 26 seasons (1997-2022).
No. 15 Leesburg (3-0, 0-0) at Ocala Vanguard (3-0, 0-0)
The host Knights are ranked No. 9 in 3S by MaxPreps, which pegs them as a 19-point favorite over the surging Yellow Jackets in this District 5 game.
Vanguard beat Leesburg 34-6 a year ago but this is a much more talented team than the one the Knights saw in 2022.
Foundation Academy (2-1, 0-0) at Orlando Christian Prep (3-0, 0-0)
OCP is No. 8 in 1M entering this District 2 game.
OCP thumped the Lions 57-14 last season in their first meeting in 10 years.
No. 10 Orange City University (3-0) at Key West (1-2)
Titans travel 425 miles one-way to play the Conchs.
University is averaging 45.3 points and has moved up to No. 16 in 4S.
Palm Bay Heritage (3-0) at Oviedo (1-2)
Heritage is No. 7 in 4S and is the third team the Lions have faced that is currently 3-0. Oviedo lost to Orange City University 37-21 and Lake Mary 46-17.
Other Thursday games
Orlando University (1-2, 0-0) at No. 8 Winter Park (2-0, 0-0) — at Showalter Field
Freedom (1-2, 0-0) at No. 16 Boone (1-2, 0-0)
Poinciana (0-2) at Horizon (3-0)
Timber Creek (1-2, 0-0) at Hagerty (1-1, 0-0)
Cypress Creek (0-2, 0-0) at Lake Nona (1-2, 0-0)
Lyman (2-1, 0-0) at Lake Howell (1-1, 0-0)
East River (0-3, 0-0) at Winter Springs (0-3, 0-0)
Lake Buena Vista (1-1) at Oak Ridge (1-2)
Legacy Charter (0-3) at Trinity Prep (0-3)
Other Friday games
St. Cloud (1-1, 0-0) at Tohopekaliga (2-0, 0-0), 7:30
Orangewood Christian (1-2) at The Master’s Academy (2-1)
Tavares (1-1) at Umatilla (0-3)
West Port (1-2, 0-0) at South Lake (0-2, 0-0)
Bishop Kenny (2-0) at Bishop Moore (0-3)
Winter Haven All Saints (1-2) at Cornerstone Charter (1-2)
Crystal River (1-1) at Windermere Prep (0-2)
Duval Charter (0-1) at Mount Dora Christian (1-2)
Jacksonville YKIM (0-1) at West Oaks (1-2) — at Northwest Recreation Complex, Apopka
St. Augustine Tocoi Creek (1-2) at Eustis (2-1)
Davenport (0-2, 0-0) at Liberty (0-3, 0-0):30
Cocoa Space Coast (0-3) at Celebration (0-3), 7:30
First Academy-Leesburg (1-2) at Pierson Taylor (2-1)
Deltona (0-2) at Port Orange Atlantic (0-2)
Gateway (0-2, 0-0) at Auburndale (2-0, 0-0), 7:30
Varsity Content Editor Buddy Collings can be reached by email at email@example.com.