GMC Gridiron–Championship Weekend–Weather Report

Storm Bringing Rainy First Two Days of Finals Weekend

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ–The final weekend of the New Jersey High School football season is here, and gets underway on Friday night with several championship games around the state including one that involves a team from the Greater Middlesex Conference.  Carteret will be taking on Matawan in the Central Jersey Group III sectional championship at Kean University starting at 7:00 PM on Friday night.  

The big story this weekend could be the weather, especially for the first two days as a storm system will be approaching the Garden State.  Clouds began to develop on Thursday night with high cirrus clouds shrouding the near full moon.  Overcast skies greeted New Jersey residents this morning with a low temperature of 31 degrees with the barometric pressure of 30.60 inches of Hg here at Greg’s Weather Center in South Plainfield.  As of lunch time, the mercury had climbed to 41 degrees at GWC while the pressure has fallen to 30.48 inches of Hg.  Winds are light.

Looking at this morning’s national weather map courtesy of the National Weather Service Office in Mount Holly, New Jersey, there were two low pressure systems pushing east.  One was to the north and currently centered in Eastern Wyoming, Northwestern Nebraska,  and Southwestern South Dakota.  Another was to the south along the border of Oklahoma and Texas.  A third low pressure system was well to the north in Canada.  The two aforementioned lows are expected to push east, and the one in the Southern Plains has already begun pushing into the lower Missouri Valley.  This storm system will be pushing toward our region as high pressure that has been centered over New England and controlling our weather will move out.

Moving into our local area, a Winter Weather Advisory is already in effect for portions of Pennsylvania while a Hazardous Weather Outlook is in effect for Sussex County in Northwestern New Jersey.  Snow and freezing rain are anticipated in Northeastern Pennsylvania with an accumulation of about an inch of snow and some ice.  Freezing rain is expected in the higher elevations of Northwestern New Jersey.  The forecast for tonight’s game between Carteret and Matawan at Kean University starts with cloudy skies this afternoon with a 30 percent chance of rain, an east wind of about 7 mph, and a high in the low 40s.  Then the rain will pick up around halftime with the chance of precipitation increasing to 80 percent and a low around 40.  East wind will slacken just a little bit to 5 mph.  

On Saturday, the rain will continue with temperatures rising into the mid 50s for the two championship games involving GMC teams at High Point Solutions Stadium on the Busch Campus of Rutgers University:  South Brunswick vs. Manalapan in the CJ Group V Championship and Colonia vs. Phillipsburg.  Chance of rain increases to about 90 percent, and between the rainfall tonight and the rainfall during the day on Saturday, there could be anywhere from a half an inch to an inch.  Over at Kean University for the North Jersey Section 2 Group I championship, Dunellen will be facing off against Shabazz early Saturday afternoon under rainy conditions with temperatures just a bit cooler in the lower 50s.  Both High Point Solutions and Kean University’s stadiums use field turf so conditions won’t be terrible, but will be slick.  Teams such as Carteret and Colonia, which use more of a blend of run and pass, will have to contend with throwing a slick ball.  The Patriots will also have to face increasing winds during the afternoon as the Garden State gets on the back side of the low, and falls under the influence of strong northwesterly winds, which will gust up to 25 mph. Total rainfall in both Union and New Brunswick is expected to be between an inch and a quarter and two inches.

GMC Gridiron will be covering three of the four state sectional final games including Carteret vs. Matawan at Kean on Friday night and South Brunswick vs. Manalapan on Saturday morning followed by Colonia vs. Phillipsburg early Saturday afternoon at Rutgers.