Balmy Weekend in Store for Opening Round of Playoffs
SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Finally, some nice weather for a change. A bit too nice though. After enduring nearly two months of stormy weather, Central Jersey High School football fans will be treated to sunshine and dry conditions for the opening round of the 2023 NJSIAA football state playoffs. However, temperatures will feel more like early to mid-September rather than the end of October.
The warm-up began on Tuesday with temperatures climbing into the mid-60s in places such as Greg’s Weather Center in South Plainfield, New Jersey. The temperature increase followed the coldest night of the season to date with areas reporting frost with morning lows in the low to mid 30s. The mercury continued to climb into Wednesday.
By lunchtime on Wednesday, the thermometer had already surpassed Tuesday’s high at GWC. High temperature wound up in the lower 70s after a morning low in the low 40s. Conditions were quite pleasant at Tangorra Field in Nutley’s Oval Park for the NJSIAA Regional Crossover contest between the Maroon Raiders of Nutley High School and North Plainfield on Wednesday evening.
Temperatures continued to rise as we moved into Thursday. Following a morning low of 48 degrees at GWC, the mercury rebounded past Wednesday’s high by late morning on Thursday. By the mid-afternoon, the high temperature was settling at 78 degrees. Expect the trend to continue for the next couple of days. High temperatures could reach the lower 80s by Saturday afternoon.
Looking at the forecast from the National Weather Service Office in Mount Holly, New Jersey, skies will be mostly cloudy in Mendham for Thursday night’s NJSIAA North Jersey Group 3 Regional Crossover between the hometown Minutemen and visiting Voorhees of the Big Central. Currently, the temperature is at 81 degrees in Mendham, and it should drop into the low to mid-70s by game time at 7:00 PM.
Moving on to Friday’s first-round playoff games, there will be decreasing clouds and at a high temperature of around 78 in Warren. By 7:00 Friday night, when the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 1 Group 5 playoff game gets underway at Tozier Field between Watchung Hills and Bridgewater, skies will be mostly clear and temperatures will likely drop into the upper 60s to low 70s.
On Saturday, the pleasant conditions will continue with temperatures in the upper 70s to low 80s around Central Jersey. Up further north, in Sussex County where St. Joseph’s will travel to face Pope John of Sparta for the regular season finale for both teams, temperatures are expected to be slightly cooler in the mid to upper 70s under mostly sunny skies.
The weather will begin to change on Saturday night as a cold front approaches from the Midwest and Ohio Valley. Skies will begin to become more overcast during the overnight into Sunday with an increasing chance of rain. Showers will develop more in earnest during the mid to late morning and continue into the early afternoon on Sunday. Temperatures will only reach the mid-50s.