Intense emotions - and talk of how to keep things in perspective - were among the chief responses Oct. 21 for members of both the Beechcroft and Brookhaven high school football teams after the host Cougars' 21-14 victory.

Intense emotions - and talk of how to keep things in perspective - were among the chief responses Oct. 21 for members of both the Beechcroft and Brookhaven high school football teams after the host Cougars' 21-14 victory.

A year after winning a share of the City League-North Division championship, Beechcroft clinched at least a share of another league title and likely wrapped up its first playoff berth since 2008. The Cougars, who were fifth in Division II, Region 7 before the Brookhaven game, have an opportunity to avenge their only league loss of last year when they play host to Northland on Friday, Oct. 28.

"We're ready," junior wide receiver and linebacker Khaleed Franklin said. "We're looking forward to playing Northland after they got us in a big one last year. We just kept fighting and did our jobs (against Brookhaven)."

For the Bearcats, the game was played in the same week that a report from Columbus City Schools was released stating that Brookhaven and two South Side elementary schools, Fairwood and Siebert, could be closed by the end of the school year. Brookhaven opened 47 years ago and is the home of the City League's only state football title (2004).

The Bearcats, who last made the playoffs in 2009, have an outside chance of making the postseason if they can win Friday, Oct. 28, at Mifflin and get help.

"It's been a rough week for Brookhaven, finding out in midweek that (we might be) losing our school," coach Trevor White said. "We'll do our best to recover from this."

Last season, Beechcroft lost to Northland 12-7 to finish 7-3 overall and tie Northland for first in the City-North at 6-1. Northland qualified for the postseason for the first time and finished 8-3 overall.

The Vikings don't have postseason hopes after an 0-3 start that has them at 4-5 overall, but they've gone 4-2 in the league and could play a spoiler role in Beechcroft's hopes of winning the title outright. Northland's only league losses were to Brookhaven (35-14 on Sept. 23) and Mifflin (20-14 on Oct. 14), and the Vikings are coming off a 35-0 victory over Whetstone on Oct. 21.

Defense, meanwhile, has continued to lead Beechcroft to new heights in recent weeks.

After losing 42-14 to Watterson on Sept. 2, the Cougars have given up just 41 points and have posted three shutouts during an eight-game winning streak.

Against Brookhaven, a unit that featured Adonis Davis, Jalen Randolph, Jamar Randolph, Shaquille Minnifield and Maurice Hale limited Bearcats quarterback Tajuan Green to 7-for-24 passing for 116 yards with one interception.

That effort helped Beechcroft overcome seven turnovers, including three interceptions thrown by Hale.

"We knew Green was a big part of their offense and we just tried to bottle him up and get pressure on him," Cougars coach Bruce Ward said. "We can't look forward to Week 11 because Northland got us last year."

Brookhaven faces a Mifflin team having a resurgence under second-year coach Gregg Miller. The former Bearcats coach has led the Punchers to an 8-1 record, with their only loss coming to Beechcroft (42-6 on Oct. 7).

Mifflin followed its only loss by beating Northland and Linden-McKinley (21-12 on Oct. 21) to improve to 8-1 and 5-1.

•The Beechcroft, Brookhaven and Northland boys soccer teams each had their seasons end during the second round of the district tournament.

The Bearcats were seeded third in Division II but lost to eighth-seeded Bexley 7-0 on Oct. 20 to finish with a 14-3 record.

Brookhaven beat Centennial 3-1 on Oct. 13 at Crew Stadium for the City championship. Seniors for the Bearcats included Edward Donkor, Shuab Farah, Wess Green, Abu Kamara, Carlos Morgan, Isse Nur, Andrews Osei-Bonsu and Clement Osei-Bonsu.

The Bearcats went 10-1 to win the City. Centennial (9-1-1) was second, with Beechcroft (8-3), Walnut Ridge (8-3) and Northland (6-3-2) rounding out the top five.

The Cougars opened the Division II district tournament with a 5-1 victory over Mifflin on Oct. 18 but lost to Hartley 6-1 on Oct. 20 to finish 8-5-1 overall. Beechcroft will lose seven seniors, including Alpha Berry and Amos Gweh. Juniors Babacar Ba and Kangni Gabianou should be among the top returnees next year for Beechcroft.

Northland lost to eighth-seeded Dublin Jerome 5-0 in the second round of the Division I district tournament to finish 8-4-2 overall. The Vikings had seven seniors, with the biggest loss likely to be Vitien Forcha.

Junior Martine Montero and sophomores Sheku Kamara and Edgar Gonzalez should be among the top returnees next year for Northland.

"I'm happy with the freshmen and sophomores that stepped up this year and took on big roles," second-year Vikings coach Mike McDaniel said. "Three of my four defenders were new to the team and we've got two sophomores and one freshman coming back on defense."

•The Beechcroft and Northland girls soccer teams each lost their district tournament openers.

The Cougars fell to fourth-seeded Bexley 12-0 on Oct. 19 in the first round of the Division II tournament to finish with a 1-10-1 record. They lost to Northland 6-3 on Sept. 28, but the teams played to a scoreless tie on Oct. 12. Beech-croft beat Columbus East 3-2 on Sept. 20 for its only victory.

Melissa Zimmerman is among the seniors for Beechcroft. Sophomores Oddyssey Riley and Dalelynn Featherstone should be among the top returnees next year.

"This has been just a super group of young ladies," Cougars coach Dan Zedeker said. "They put everything together for the second Northland game."

Northland lost to second-seeded Dublin Coffman 11-0 in the first round of the Division I tournament Oct. 20. The Vikings' senior class included Alexandra Goldsmith, Lovina Koroma and Alexandra Pickett.

•The Northland girls volleyball team was looking for its second consecutive City championship when it traveled Oct. 25 to Eastmoor Academy.

The Vikings went 13-1 in the City-North, with Centennial and Whetstone each going 11-3 and Brookhaven (8-6) and East (7-7) rounding out the top five.

The Warriors went 14-0 to win the City-South, followed by Briggs (10-4), West (10-4), Walnut Ridge (9-5) and Africentric (7-7).

Last season, Northland went 14-0 in the league and beat Briggs 21-25, 25-19, 25-22, 23-25, 15-2 in the City final.