Three new teams join the Sweet 16 as the high school football season reaches the state semifinal week.
Monroe, Shelby and Forestview will play in regional championship games next week, and all three teams jump into the poll this week. Monroe, a 2A school, is No. 11, followed by 2A Shelby at 12 and 3A Forestview at 13.
Monroe has won 12 straight games since a two-game losing streak in September. Monroe is unbeaten against 2A teams. Shelby has won three straight and has not lost to a 2A team. Forestview has won four in a row since a three-game losing streak that started in mid-October.
Observer Sweet 16
First-place votes in parentheses:
| Rk.|| Team (Class)|| Rec.|| Pts.|| Pv.|
|1||Mallard Creek (4A) (4)||14-0||64||1|
|2||Rock Hill Northwestern (4A)||14-0||60||2|
|T4||Charlotte Christian (IND)||12-0||50||4|
|T4||Charlotte Catholic (4A)||12-2||50||T6|
|8.||South Point (3A)||13-1||36||3|
|9||Rock Hill South Pointe (4A)||11-3||35||T6|
|14||Rocky River (4A)||11-3||13||13|
|15||North Rowan (2A)||13-1||6||11|
|16||East Lincoln (2A)||9-5||5||12|
Dropped out: Hibriten (3A, 12-2); Weddington (3A, 11-3); Independence (4A, 8-5). Also receiving votes: Weddington (3A, 11-3); Central Cabarrus (3A, 11-2). Note: Four Observer sports writers voted.
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