The local playoff season in Class A barely got started before it was over. The only local team was Cornell and the Raiders fell to sixth-seeded Jeannette, 50-36, Friday night at Baldwin.
Cornell probably had better talent than most 11th seeds, but the schedule did the Raiders no favors. Cornell opened the season with three games against teams from larger classes – Montour, Quaker Valley, and Laurel – and lost all three. All three ultimately made the playoffs and finished with a combined record of 48-16.
In all, Cornell played 11 teams in the regular season that eventually reached the playoffs and the Raiders lost all 11. Against non-playoff teams, Cornell was 7-1, losing only to Class AAA Keystone Oaks.
The Raiders were led by senior Blake Lipke, who scored about 16 points per game, and Cornell had only four non-seniors on the roster. Normally, that would cast doubt on the prospects for next season but, with Cornell returning to football and the realignment to six classes, anything could happen. Besides, with head coach Bill Sacco also the athletic director, the schedule may not be as challenging.