It's barely halfway through the season but games are already taking on a critical status in some sections for local teams, even though four teams make the playoffs this year. It's too soon for any team to mathematically clinch a playoff spot or be eliminated, but definitely not too soon for teams' practical fates to be in the balance.
Obviously, every game also remains critical for Blackhawk and West Allegheny as they look to remain undefeated but there are others.
Wednesday's key games are Central Valley at South Fayette, Avonworth at Riverside, and Western Beaver at Sewickley Academy.
Friday, the list is even longer. A lot will be riding on Montour's visit to Moon, Hopewell's visit to Central Valley, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart's visit to Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, and Rochester's visit to Western Beaver.