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Homeroom Announcements: Friday's big games & more

As another weekend with championship implications begins, get yourself ready for today's #PrepTalkLive action with everything you need to know about the day ahead in high school sports.

What to watch for Friday

1. Football - Far West Regionals at New Era Field

Class D: Maple Grove (10-0) vs. V-Alexander (10-0), 5 p.m.

Maple Grove, ranked No. 1 in the state poll, hosts Alexander, No. 5 in the state, in a battle of 10-0 teams that get the weekend of regional football action started.

The Red Dragons are strong on the ground, led by the pair of senior running backs Bradley Benson and Trevor Micek. The duo ran for 254 yards in a Section VI final win last weekend. Micek, a linebacker who played on Maple Grove's state semifinalist team two years ago, also leads a defense that yields just 6.6 points per game.

The Trojans, who entered the Section V final averaging over 40 points per game, are making their first regional appearance. Senior quarterback PJ Brennan, the section's Class D Offensive Player of the Year, has passed for 20 touchdowns and has another 10 on the ground. Defensively, senior Dustin Schmeider has 16.5 sacks on the season.

Class A: Bennett (8-2) vs. V-Greece Athena (10-0), 8 p.m.

Bennett looks to become the second straight Buffalo Public Schools program to reach the final four in this clash of teams making their first regional appearances.

While the duo of Tigers seniors Isaiah McDuffie and Jamel Lofton will undoubtedly look too impose their will on the ground as running backs, as linebackers they'll also be keying on Trojans quarterback Tavon Granison. The Athena senior has 16 TDs passing and 17 rushing.

2. Boys soccer - State Catholic semifinals: Canisius vs. Chaminade, 4 p.m.

Canisius heads down to St. John's University in New York City for a semifinal matchup with Chaminade of Long Island.

The Crusaders (14-3) repeated as Monsignor Martin Class A champions last weekend by beating rival St. Joe's, 1-0, on a header by Alex Nemeth. The senior trio of Max Montante, Mike Mazzara and JP Bobak all received postseason honors in the MMAA last year.

The Flyers are 16-3-2 and have outscored opponents 73-23 on the season. Matt Vowinkel leads the team with 14 goals and eight assists.

3. Football - Monsignor Martin semifinals: 3-St. Joe's (4-6) at 2-St. Francis (3-5), 7 p.m.

St. Francis and St. Joe's renew acquaintances for a spot in the Monsignor Martin championship.

The Marauders defense forced four turnovers and held Frannies quarterback Jerry Hickson to just 91 yards passing in an 18-14 home win on Oct. 22. Joe's QB Casey Kelly that day ran eight times for 88 yards and two scores, and threw for 162 yards.

The Red Raiders responded nicely to that loss with a 54-44 shootout win over Bishop Timon-St. Jude the following week to clinch the No. 2 seed in the playoffs. Running back Dylan McDuffie scored six touchdowns (five rushing), while Hickson threw for 249 yards and two scores.

The winner plays for the MMAA title at New Era Field next Thursday against the winner of Saturday afternoon's 1-Canisius vs. 4-Timon contest.

Today's schedule can be found at our high school scoreboard.

#PrepTalkLive updates: While we follow ALL the high school action via our Prep Talk team, we encourage YOU to also tweet updates from the games you are attending with the hashtag #PrepTalkLive attached.

#PrepTalkSpirit: Show us your school spirit by tweeting us fan photos with the hashtag #PrepTalkSpirit and we'll highlight one every week.

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Thursday's roundup

Football preview: Born to run, Section VI champs set to go vertical in the right situation
Class A: Bennett vs. V-Greece Athena at a glance
Class D: Maple Grove vs. V-Alexander at a glance

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After school 

- Stories, photo galleries and videos recapping Friday’s football action

- As always, we'll monitor today's action in our #PrepTalkLive post

Follow The Buffalo News' high school sports coverage with Prep Talk on Facebook and Twitter.

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