Blackwell, G-R to play in Rankin

It’s been 17 years since a Blackwell football team got past the first round of the Six-Man playoffs. But it took less than 24 hours af-ter the Hornets’ 70-26 win over Lueders-Avoca this past Friday to find out who they would play in the regional round this week.According to Blackwell coach Clint Lowry, his team will play Grandfalls-Royalty at 7 p.m. Friday in Rankin. Grandfalls-Royalty will be considered the home team for the contest.Both teams come into the game ranked in the top 10 in Six-Man Division II.Blackwell (10-1) is No. 10 while Grandfalls-Royalty (10-1) — which beat Loop 68-20 in its bi-district con-test — is ranked No. 2 in the poll released Sunday.Friday’s winner will take on Loraine or Dawson, who meet in this week’s other Region II playoff game, in the state quarterfinals.Blackwell has made it this far in the playoffs only twice in the last 45 years. Before 1996, its last playoff win came in 1968.Both teams’ only loss this season was to a team from Six-Man Division I. Black-well started 6-0 before losing 76-60 to its Nolan County rival Highland, in its final pre-district game.Grandfalls-Royalty began the year by losing 32-20 to Water Valley, which is currently ranked No. 2 in Six-Man Division I, and has since won 10 straight.