Football playoffs at a glance
Atholton's 12-7 loss to Marriotts Ridge last week knocked the Raiders out of first place in the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association's 3A East region, but they still appear solidly in playoff position in this week's postseason points standings.
Atholton fell to fourth place in the region behind North Harford (5-1) and Wilde Lake (5-1), which are tied at the top, and Howard (5-1), which is .83 ahead of the Raiders in the state's complicated points formula. Bel Air, Fallston, Reservoir and Long Reach, all 3-3 teams, trail Stephen Decatur by at least a full point for fifth place, meaning they'll all need help to get past Decatur then make a run at Atholton.
In the 3A North region, Hereford (6-0) appears on the verge of wrapping up home-field advantage all the way through the regionals and the 3A semifinals, while Patapsco (5-1), Milford Mill, Catonsville and Mervo are within .83 points of each other for the last three spots, meaning one of them will be home in mid-November, when the playoffs start.
Meanwhile, in the 1A South region, one of the more pleasant surprises of the season, Digital Harbor (5-1), leaped past Surrattsville of Prince George's County for second, and moved into position to host a first-round playoff game if things remain the same. Dunbar (6-0) has a solid lead in the region, and Forest Park (4-2) seems to have the fourth slot sewn up.