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Morris Sussex Sports is keeping track of how all 37 teams are doing as far as qualifying for the postseason. If we could have it our way, every one of those teams would qualify for the state tournament.   Once the playoffs start, we rally behind all Morris Sussex teams as they compete against teams from around the state.  We will update this page again to help our readers see how their favorite team is ranking.

The NJSIAA uses what they call a Power Point formula to calculate whether a team qualifies for the playoffs. You can view the rules yourself but we’re posting the highlights to give you a really good idea of how it all works.

The power ranking system will be the sum total of the best seven (7) of the eight (8) completed games. The ninth game on the schedule has no bearing on the playoffs.

How the Power Points Work

For each game a team receives what are called “Quality Points.” So whether the team wins, loses or ties, they receive these various points: Win = 6 points; Tie = 3 points; Lose = 0 points

A team will also receive extra points depending on the opponent’s Group. So for every win or tie, a team will receive these points: Group 1 = 1 point; Group 2 = 2 points; Group 3 = 3 points; Group 4 = 4 points; Group 5 = 5 points

The best part of the Power Point system is the Residual Points a team can accumulate. These can rack up, especially if a team beats a team that has a lot of wins. And these points accumulate for wins that team gets in the future.  A team is awarded these points for every game their opponent has won, tied or lost: Win = 3 points; Tie = 1.5 points; Lose = 0 points

There are a few other rules around tie breakers that need to be considered, so check out the link above. But now you have an idea of how it all breaks down.  Let’s take a look how each team is standing at the midway point right now.

How Each Team is Doing As of:  10/8/2015

Boonton

State Section: North 1, Group 1
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  1st
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Just keep winning.  At 4-0 they are in excellent shape.  Getting through this week against 4-0 North Warren  with a win will be nice.  But even if they lose this weekend they’ll have to really screw things up the rest of the way to not make the playoffs.

Butler

State Section:  North 1, Group 1
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  11th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Starting off 0-2 isn’t helping them.  But beating Madison in Week 3 will pay dividends as the season wears on because the Dodgers will win more and keep the Residual Power Points cranking in.  The Bulldogs seem to have straightened out their ship but they have rough seas still ahead.  They are going to have to work really hard if they want to punch a ticket for even a low seed because this section is very competitive.

Chatham

State Section:  North 2, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  5th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Beating Randolph is going to pay handsomely in the form of residual Power Points.  However, Chatham is far from being comfortably in the playoffs.  Their next four games are against Morris Hills, Vernon, Pope John and Par Hills – none of which will be easy.  I can’t guarantee if even splitting the next four games will guarantee them a spot in the top 8 of the section.  Chatham will need to continue to play tough and hope they get a little help from other teams in the section.

Delbarton

State Section:  Non-public, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  4th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  After starting 0-2, Delby has done a good job of righting their ship to a .500 record and they are sitting in good shape in their section.  The problem for them is losing to Morris Knolls is giving teams like Mendham, Randolph and Morristown the idea that there is a chink in the Green Wave’s armor.  But I will say, Delby has looked mighty crisp the last two games and I think their woes are behind them.  They should go at least 3-1 the next four games and that will be enough to get them to the dance.

Dover

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  8th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Dover is 1-3 right now but are benefiting from a weak section at this point.  A lot will probably change so Dover will need to pickup the pace and get some wins if they plan on maintaining a playoff spot.  A 4-4 record might do the trick but that would mean they would need to go 3-1 against Hackettstown, Parsippany, Lenape Valley and Hanover Park.  That will not be easy but Dover is starting to heal from some early season injuries so I wouldn’t write these guys off in the least.

Hackettstown

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  5th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Hackettstown has done themselves a favor by going 3-1 in their first four games.  However, the next four are against Dover, Hanover Park, Jefferson and Madison – all very good teams.  The second half of the season is definitely going to be tough for the Tigers.  Plus those early wins won’t carry many Residual Power Points so I wouldn’t be entirely comfortable by just splitting the next four games.  But winning three out of four will likely get them in with room to spare – the problem is that it’s easier said than done.

Hanover Park

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  3rd
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Hanover Park will do themselves a huge favor by beating Lenape Valley (who is also first this this section) this weekend.  If they do beat the Pats, they are likely guaranteed a spot in the Top 8.  As a former alumni, I am loving the way they are romping through their schedule.  But I wouldn’t mind a little adversity so we (I know I said “we,” I can’t help it – once black and gold, always black and gold) know how to handle tough teams that we will likely face in the playoffs.

High Point

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  15th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  There is good news and bad news about the next four games for the Wildcats.  The bad news is they face Par Hills, Sparta, Morris Hills and Montville because they are tough.  The good news is most of those teams carry big Residual Power Points if they are beaten.  It’s an uphill climb but running the table in the second half would get them a chance of getting in.

Hopatcong

State Section: North 1, Group 1
What Place Are They In Right Now:  9th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  This is a very good team, but they didn’t do themselves any favors by splitting the first four games.  I bet they want that Jefferson game back.  The good news for DaCong is they have some good teams on their schedule who carry a lot of well needed residual points (like Pequannock, Butler and North Warren).  DaCong has the firepower to get themselves into the playoffs with room to spare, but I think they’re going to have to do more than win two out of the next four games.

Jefferson

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  8th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Jefferson helped themselves by beating Kinnelon and Hopatcong.  Those wins will carry some residual points as both teams start to rack up the wins.  The trick for Jefferson will be going three out of four against Parsippany, Madison, Hackettstown and Lenape Valley – because I don’t know if winning two out of the next four games will give them enough Power Points to get comfortably in.

Kinnelon

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  16
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  I know Kinnelon is kicking themselves by going 0-4 through the first four games.  This is a good team that has had some tough breaks.  The good news is their next four games are against Kittatinny, Pequannock, Whippany Park and Butler – which will carry a boatload of Quality and Residual Power Points if they win out – which they will have to do to have any postseason hopes.

Kittatinny

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  11th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  I said at the beginning of the season that Kittatinny would shock a lot of teams.  They started off 0-2 but were suffering from key injuries.  They are much healthier and you can tell by the way they won their last two games they are feeling good about themselves.  They still have an uphill battle and I am not sure if splitting the next four games will do that trick.  But I do know taking down Mountain Lakes or North Warren will be critical to getting in to the postseason – which I think is totally doable when this Cougar team is healthy.

Lenape Valley

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  1st
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  4-0 Lenape Valley is in a very comfortable position with the first spot in this section right now.  However, they have a heck of a second half of the season with Hanover Park, North Warren, Dover and Jefferson still left to play before the eight-game cutoff.  They are capable of winning out but even if they only went 1-3 through the next four games, they’d be still in the dance.

Madison

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  4th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Splitting the first four games probably wasn’t what Madison had in mind.  However, they are in a decent position in the Power Point rankings right now.  With Jefferson, Parsippany, Hackettstown and Hanover Park still left to play before the eight-game cutoff, staying in the top 8 of the section won’t be easy.  What they don’t want to do is make that eighth game against Hanover Park the deciding factor.  The Hornets are stacked this year and that would put a lot of pressure on the Dodgers – although that would be a fun game to watch if it did have playoff implications.

Mendham

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  12th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Mendham has Morristown, Delbarton, West Morris and Mount Olive left to play.  Delbarton and West Morris carry a lot of Power Points.  I’d say if the Minutemen beat Motown, Mount Olive and either Delby or WMC they’d likely get a postseason bid.  But they didn’t do themselves any favors by starting the season 1-3.

Montville

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  16th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:   At 0-4, the Mustangs have a big hole to climb out of.  Next up is Pope John, Par Hills, Vernon and High Point.  The good news is winning out the next four will give them a solid chance of getting in.  Watching movies like Rudy and Rocky will likely help because Montville is definitely in the role of the underdog.  But it would be a cool story if they could start to chip away at a postseason bid by starting with an upset over PJ.

Morris Catholic

State Section:  Non-public, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  11th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Even at 1-3, the Crusaders are not in as bad of shape as you may think.  They’ve shown they have fight in them.  Going 3-1 is a must in the second half but its not entirely out of reach.  They’ll just need to play near perfect to get there.  Next up is Butler, Morristown-Beard, Boonton and Parsippany.

Morris Hills

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  9th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  At 2-2 MoHills is not in horrible shape at all.  Problem for them is the second half of the season includes battling a very hot Chatham team, Pope John (no need to get descriptive here), High Point that at 0-4 is not carrying any residual Power Points, and the defending state champs Sparta.  Beating High Point and one of the other three might not guarantee a spot.  They’d be in a lot better shape if they could go 3-1 over the next four.  But again, it is an uphill battle.

Morris Knolls

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  5th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Morris Knolls (3-1) just needs to keep being Morris Knolls because its working for them.  You don’t take down Delbarton because you are lucky.  There are no shoe-in wins with Mount Olive, Randolph, Morristown and West Morris left on the schedule.  But splitting the next four should still give them room to get in.  Their Delby win is going to keep pumping out those residual Power Points.

Morristown

State Section:  North 1, Group 5
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  9th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Motown (2-2) is the only Group 5 school in Morris Sussex and they are only a Group 5 team by about three students.  The disadvantage for them is they play all lower Group schools who don’t produce as many Power Points.  Up next is Mendham, West Morris, Morris Knolls and Delbarton.  I think winning three out of four will carry enough Quality Power Points and Residual Power Points to get them in.  The Colonials have scored 49-points twice this season – so they definitely have the firepower.  Still won’t be easy, though.

Morristown-Beard

State Section:  Non-public, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  14th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Uggh, Mo-Beard did themselves no favors by going 0-4 out of the gate.  They will definitely need to win the next four to have any chance of getting in.  Running the table against an undefeated MKA team, a scrappy Morris Catholic team, a Hopatcong squad that has multiple college prospects and a Boonton team that is just kicking the heck out of opponents is a tall order.  But heck, that’s why you play the game.

Mount Olive

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  13th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Even at 1-3 the Marauders playoff hopes are not entirely doomed.  Going 3-1 in the second half will be necessary to get in.  Getting wins against Morris Knolls, Roxbury, Randolph and Mendham will all carry a ton of Quality and Residual Points.  Time time is now to find out what their M.O. is.

Mountain Lakes

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  6th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Mountain Lakes hasn’t been 2-2 to start a season in, well, ever…probably.  But don’t think this is an off-year for the Herd because its not.  The front end of their schedule was just loaded.  With Newton, Kittatinny, Wallkill Valley and Pequannock left to play, ML should find away to get themselves to get in.

Newton

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  12
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Newton has shown flashes of flat-out brilliance in the first half.  But at 2-2, they’ve also shown they still have some figuring out to do.  With Mountain Lakes, Wallkill Valley, Pequannock and Whippany Park there is some hope to make some ground in the Power Point department.

North Warren

State Section: North 1, Group 1
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  6th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  It seems kind of crazy but being 4-0 at this point only has NWR in the 6th position in this section.  Beating Boonton this weekend, who is at the 1st spot in this section, will certainly boost their position.  In fact, if they do that, they will likely all but seal their postseason bid.  But here’s the nerve-racking part for the Pats:  If they lose this weekend, then they have to face Lenape Valley, Kittatinny and Boonton- all of which are teams that are flaming hot right now.  In fact, the current combined record of their next four opponents is 14-2.

Parsippany

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  13th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  At 0-4 the Redhawks have no choice to win the next four games against Jefferson, Dover, Madison and Morris Catholic.  That won’t be easy.  Okay, its going to be flat out very hard.  But ya never know.

Parsippany Hills

State Section:  North 2, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  8th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  I wouldn’t be at all comfortable if I were Par Hills right now.  First off they are just barely in the playoffs with their 2-2 record.  Second their next two games are against an 0-4 High Point team and a 0-4 Montville team, both of which aren’t carrying any Residual Power Points.  So the Vikings will make up no ground in their section even if they go 2-0 in the next two games, which they will likely do.  Then they have to play a hot Sparta and a hot Chatham team, both of which will also be playing for their playoff lives.  Winning the next three out of four might just not be enough for PH.

Pequannock

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  6th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Pequannock did themselves a favor by going 3-1 in the first four games.  Splitting the next four games will likely get them in to the postseason with room to spare, and it is doable for the Golden Panthers.  Up next they face Hopatcong, Kinnelon, Newton and Mount Lakes.

Pope John

State Section:  Non-public, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  3rd
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  PJ is the only team in Morris Sussex to have already played five games.  At 3-2, they are in a comfortable spot.  Racking up insurance Power Points against Montville, Morris Hills and Chatham shouldn’t be too much trouble.

Randolph

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  8th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Randolph should not feel comfortable at all.  Going 2-2 through the first four is a good thing but splitting the next four against the likes of Delbarton, Morris Knolls, Mount Olive and Roxbury is no easy task, and may not guarantee them a spot.  Going 3-1 should do the trick with room to spare – just easier said than done.

Roxbury

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  1st
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Roxbury (4-0) could probably lose the next four and still get in with room to spare.  But don’t worry, that won’t happen.  Next up is West Morris, Mount Olive, Delbarton and Randolph.

Sparta

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  6th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Sparta is 2-2 right now but I wouldn’t worry too much about them.  They’ll face Vernon, High Point, Par Hills and MoHills over the next four games.  Two or three wins should get them in but they could likely run the table.

Sussex Tech

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place Are They In Right Now:  2nd
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  Sussex Tech (2-2) is in great shape right now in their section but I’d be nervous about their two game skid.  They need to right their ship right now.  The sketchy part that I don’t like that some of the teams on their schedule (Middlesex, Newark Collegiate, Long Island Lutheran and Highland) are independent teams – meaning they are not part of a conference.  So it’s really hard to gauge how good or bad they are because you aren’t really familiar with their competition.  But I think ST is pretty stacked with talent this year and winning the next two or three out of four should get them in and I think that is totally achievable.

Vernon

State Section:  North 1, Group 3
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  13th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  At 1-3 and facing Sparta, Chatham, Montville and Pope John over the next three doesn’t bode well for the Vikings.  There was something about Vernon that I really liked in the preseason.  There was a fire in their eye.  If there is anytime to turn that spark on, its now.  Winning the next three out of four will be the minimum they’ll need to do to get a ticket to the dance.

Wallkill Valley

State Section:  North 1, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  13th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  Going 2-2 in the first half of the season is a good thing and beating Kinnelon will likely start to pay WV some Residual Power Points because I think they will start winning.  Because this section is so good and given the fact the Rangers are so far back right now, I think going 3-4 against the back half of the schedule is going to be necessary.  Doing that against Whippany Park, Newton, Mountain Lakes and Kittatinny won’t be easy, but its doable – especially if they bring it like they did against Kinnelon.

West Morris

State Section:  North 1, Group 4
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  4th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  Yes
What They Need To Do:  West Morris is in good shape right now at 3-1.  Winning the next two out of four will likely get them in with room to spare.  Over the next four they will play Roxbury, Morristown, Mendham and Morris Knolls.  I like the Wolfpack’s odds of making it to the dance.

Whippany Park

State Section:  North 2, Group 2
What Place In Their Section They In Right Now:  16th
Would They Make The Playoffs If The Season Ended Today:  No
What They Need To Do:  They need to win the next four and than pray the to the playoff gods for a little help.  Up next is Wallkill Valley, Boonton, Kinnelon and Newton.  Hey, ya never know!

Photo by Chris Chambers

George Muha has been covering high school sports since 2006. He feels high school scholar-athletes are the most important part of the community and highlighting their achievements on the field, in the classroom and within the community is his personal mission.

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