There are 16 high school football programs in the Morning Sentinel/Kennebec Journal coverage area. If you felt so inclined, you couldn’t possibly see each one of them play at least once this season, could you?

Turns out, with a little bit of planning, you can. We did the planning. It’s up to you to get to the games.

Sept. 4, Lawrence at Skowhegan. These old Pine Tree Conference rivals are just 17 miles apart, but with crossover games against the Campbell Conference scheduled the last two years, the Bulldogs and Indians haven’t played each other since the 2012 season. Lawrence is coming off a trip to the conference championship game, while Skowhegan looks to make the playoffs after missing them by a hair last season. This is a good opening week test for both teams.

Sept. 11, Brunswick at Lawrence. A rematch of last season’s PTC B championship game. It’s early in the season, but it could be a bellweaher game for both teams.

Sept. 12, Dirigo at Oak Hill. The Cougars and the Raiders have become fierce rivals in recent years. On the way to the last two Class D state titles, Oak Hill knocked off Dirigo in the playoffs.

Sept. 18, Madison at Belfast. Last season, the Bulldogs and the Lions played one of the highest scoring games in state history. Belfast 82, Madison 60. When they met in the first round of the playoffs, the score was a more pedestrian 20-12 win for Belfast. Madison potentially has one of the top offenses in the Big Ten Conference. Belfast lost running back Steven Davis to graduation.

Sept. 19, Maine Central Institute at Mount View. Like Lawrence and Skowhegan, these rivals are geographic neighbors, but did not face each other last season. MCI is playing for its second straight Little Ten Conference title and a chance at the gold ball that eluded it last season. Mount View is hoping a year of experience gained by young players last season translates into a playoff push this year.

Sept. 25, Maranacook at Winthrop/Monmouth. A midseason test against one of your big rivals. There is never anything wrong with that.

Sept. 26, Madison at Winslow. Last season, Madison was a surprise playoff participant to probably everybody but Madison. This season, the Bulldogs won’t sneak up on anybody. Winslow has won three straight regional titles and is coming off an undefeated state championship season. This is one of the games the Black Raiders will have circled on the schedule as a tough matchup.

Oct. 2, Gardiner at Mount Blue. Six of the 10 teams in the PTC B will make the playoffs. This could be one of those midseason games that determines a team’s postseason fate.

Oct. 9, Messalonskee at Skowhegan. This should be an interesting game between two playoff contenders, if only for the contradiction in styles. We’ll see Messalonskee’s power running game against Skowhegan’s pass-heavy spread attack.

Oct. 10, Mt. Blue at Nokomis. This is Nokomis’ first season in the PTC B. By this game in week six, the Warriors will have been tested in a number of games. This is Mt. Blue’s only scheduled day game of the regular season.

Oct. 16, Skowhegan at Cony. If you want to see two teams run the spread offense well, don’t miss this game. Both the Rams and Indians should be fighting for a playoff spot, too.

Oct. 23, Gardiner at Cony. It’s rivalry week in Maine. If you don’t have a rooting interest, you can’t go wrong with the oldest rivalry in central Maine. Other big rivalry games this night include Mt. Blue at Skowhegan and Lawrence at Messalonskee.

Oct. 24 Winslow at Waterville. It’s rivalry week, day two. This will be central Maine’s fifth Battle of the Bridge in three seasons. Waterville and Winslow met in each of the last two regional Class C championship games.

Nov. 14, Kents Hill at Hebron. The Maine Principals’ Association playoffs will be in their regional finals week, but if your favorite team’s season is over, the rivalry game between these Maine teams in the Evergreen League could be worth your time. The Kents Hill-Hebron rivalry goes back more than 120 years. The winner of this game takes home the Headmaster’s Chair.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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