Finally Some Football Weather for Sectional Semifinals
SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Last week, there was finally some great weather for the weekend. Opening-round playoff games were plenty under clear skies, warm temperatures, and light winds. The playoff match-up between Bridgewater-Raritan and Watchung Hills in North Jersey Section 1 Group 5 reflected that. The first time the two teams met on September 23rd, they played in the midst of Tropical Storm Ophelia, and only combined for 21 points. Last week, the two squads combined for 59.
The weather for this week’s sectional semifinal round is going to remain dry, but much more fall-like with temperatures in the upper 30s for lows on Friday night, and highs into the upper 50s to low 60s on Saturday afternoon. On Thursday night, Big Central Gridiron headed up to Blairstown and North Warren Regional High School for the regional crossover contest between the Patriots and Roselle Park, by the time we arrived, frost was beginning to develop, and the grass field there.
At game time, the temperature was about 38 degrees in Blairstown. By the end of the game, the thermometer had fallen another five degrees to just above freezing at 33. North Warren Regional High School is located off Route 94 in Northwestern New Jersey. Not too far from the Poconos in Eastern Pennsylvania. The cold did have some impact by the end of the contest. Players were struggling to keep warm. BCG had to keep moving in order to prevent the chill from affecting the hands and feet.
The overnight low in Blairstown got down to 27 degrees on Friday morning. Meanwhile, at GWC in South Plainfield, the temperature dropped to 27 degrees as well at 7:18 AM on Friday. The thermometer gradually warmed up to 55 degrees during lunchtime. Thursday was much colder with a high of only 48 degrees at 12:59 PM after another morning low of 27 at 7:39 AM.
Temperatures in Northwestern Middlesex County have hovered from the upper 40s to around 60 for highs while the lows plummeted from 49 after midnight on Monday to 27 by Thursday morning. Conditions are beginning to moderate though. For tonight’s playoff games at Bernards High School and Ridge High School in Northern Somerset County, temperatures will likely be in the mid to upper 40s by game time before falling to an overnight low of 37.
For Saturday’s games, look for the temperatures to be a bit warmer with highs approaching 60 degrees by the afternoon. At St. Joseph’s Brenner Family Field in Metuchen, where the Falcons will host Seton Hall Prep in the Non-Public A playoffs, the temperature will be 60 under partly sunny skies after a morning low of 40. Expect conditions to be the same at The Swamp in Middletown for the regional consolation game between Plainfield and Middletown South.
Temperatures will be a little bit chillier under mostly cloudy skies at Investor’s Bank Field in Summit’s Tatlock Park, where the Hilltoppers will be hosting West Essex in their North Jersey Section 2 Group 3 playoff contest. High temperature is forecast to be in the upper 50s after a morning low just below 40. Temperatures are expected to moderate more as we move into Sunday with highs in the low 60s under partly sunny skies.