This may be the first time I've ever been disappointed in a 48-0 win.
Seriously, though - congratulations, Cowboys. The win clinches a playoff berth for you. This is the 23rd time Miles City has qualified for the postseason since 1980, matching Whitefish for the most appearances over that span.
Whitefish (1-7) will NOT be making a 24th trip to the playoffs this year.
The four divisional champions have pretty much been decided. Billings Central (East), Dillon (Southwest), Butte Central (Central) and Columbia Falls (Northwest) will get the first-round byes.
Unless, of course, Billings Central loses to Glendive and Sidney ... done laughing yet? Anyway, moving on ...
If Miles City beats Laurel, the Cowboys will host the loser between next week's game between Belgrade and Havre. The loser of the MC-Laurel game will travel to the winner of the Belgrade-Havre game.
Should the Cowboys win next week, they would only have to go on the road once (to face Columbia Falls). If Miles City wins out, they would host a semifinal game and the state championship (unless Billings Central also holds serve).
If Laurel wins, Miles City would be on the road until the championship game (unless, of course, Billings Central also makes the chipper).
Obviously, it would benefit the Cowboys greatly if they defeat Laurel next week. The Locomotives are a good team and should provide the Cowboys biggest challenge since the BC game. I am glad the game will be at Denton Field.
My early prediction is MC 20, Laurel 7.
Losing to the Rams earlier this season might not have been the worst thing that could have happened. The first-round bye would be nice, but Central is guaranteed only one home playoff game. A potential rematch against Butte Central (in Butte) looms in the semifinals.