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Several region titles up for grabs

Besides Week 5, in which three of the top six teams in the Deseret Morning News' weekly Top 25 rankings all lost, tonight's slate of high school football games has the potential to be the best yet.

From Roosevelt to Layton and Hyrum to Salt Lake City, region titles are up for grabs with the playoffs just around the corner.

If you want defense, Layton is the place to be with Viewmont visiting Layton in a Region 1 showdown.

If you want offense, Sky View's pilgrimage across Cache County to take on Mountain Crest should feature plenty of scoring.

If it's star power you're after, Union quarterback Rhen Richard has been phenomenal as of late in leading the Cougars to a No. 1 ranking in 3A, and visiting Judge — the former No. 1 team — will be looking to reclaim its throne.

And for you Salt Lake residents who'd prefer to stay close to home, you'll likely fancy a visit to West High School. With Cottonwood, East, Highland and West all tied at 4-1 atop the Region 6 standings, tonight's downtown tilt between Highland and West is the first meaningful October game played at West High this century.

"The kids are pretty excited," said West coach Randy Schreiter, adding that senior week is creating even more excitement. "We're trying to keep it low-key though, we want them to think they've been here before even though they haven't."

Even though Schreiter is pleased with the revival of the West program, he doesn't want to boast about turning the mediocrity corner until the Panthers win a region championship or at least experience the thrill of hosting a playoff game.

In addition to these four marquee matches, there are numerous other intriguing games tonight including Rich at Duchesne, Davis at Northridge, Roy at Bountiful, Park City at Wasatch and Ogden at Grantsville.

With two region games remaining for most teams, here's a look at some teams in must-win situations:

Class 5A: In Region 1, Weber must beat Clearfield to avoid being eliminated from playoff contention, whereas the loser of the Brighton-Hillcrest game in Region 2 is out. West Jordan needs a win over Copper Hills to keep its hopes alive, but realistically so does Copper Hills, which ends the season with Bingham. Lehi has already been eliminated in Region 4.

Class 4A: Tooele is the first 4A team to be eliminated from postseason consideration, but the Buffaloes will be joined by Murray and Box Elder if those two schools don't win tonight.

Interestingly enough, 10 of 16 playoff berths have already been determined as Mountain Crest, Cottonwood, East, Highland, West, Timpview, Orem, Mountain View, Pine View and Dixie have already clinched. Sky View will join them with a win tonight.

Class 3A: Only three of 19 teams don't qualify for the postseason in 3A. Canyon View has already been eliminated, and Carbon will join the Falcons with one more loss.

Class 2A: All 12 teams qualify for the playoffs. North Summit, South Summit and Millard have already clinched first-round byes, and San Juan can claim the final first-round bye with a win over Richfield.

Class 1A: Barring major upsets the last two weeks of the season, Milford and Layton Christian will be the two 1A schools that don't qualify for the eight-team tournament.