Want a championship? You have to play for one first. And to do that means winning in the semifinals. Here. We. Go.
Today’s (PLAYOFF!) Games
No. 5 Foothill at No. 1 Enterprise. Winner: Enterprise. No surprise here.
No. 3 Chico at No. 2 Paradise. Winner: Paradise. Tempted to take the Panthers, especially after two days of some drying out with no rain around Om Wraith Field. But let’s face it. Paradise has had two weeks for this game. The Bobcats will be well-rested, and they’ll be ready. Don’t think Chico gets enough stops and Paradise does thanks to its defense, its field, its home crowd, the environment, etc. Curious to see how many snaps Jonathan Dixon gets on both offense and defense. As fellow running back Mat Machado said, “He’s a whole lot of man.” The telltale sign is how many plays can Paolo DiSano, Miles Fishback and Nate Guanzon make. If they can catch the ball and get some yards after the catch, then Chico will have a good chance. Malik Hopkins has to make some big plays on defense. He’s capable. Hope this one lives up to the hype.
No. 4 Orland at No. 1 West Valley. Winner: West Valley. Tempted to take Orland. Trojans have the defense, and I’m not sure if Eagles have the passing game to keep them honest. Just think Austin Clark and company breaks enough big plays to get Orland out of its comfort zone of grind it out in a low-scoring affair. Curious to see how Eagles stack up against Arthur Flynn. A big, bruising back. Also Kavi Ram vs. Marcus Simmons should be an interesting matchup.
No. 3 Central Valley at No. 2 Sutter. Winner: Central Valley. Don’t like this pick. Keep thinking how CV struggled on a road trip south to start its season, and how CV took a while to get going at Chico and in between couldn’t sustain an entire game against Orland. As Bryan Johnson on “Comic Book Men” said, seller’s remorse even before he even agreed to it. Can I change now?
No 5 Hamilton at No. 1 Colusa. Winner: Hamilton. Braves lost by 21 a few weeks ago, but turnovers were the cause. I think Hamilton keeps mistakes to a minimum, and it always helps to have the best player on the field on your side. That would be Andrew Shippelhoute.
No. 6 Winters at No. 2 Durham. Winner: Durham. Trojans can’t take Warriors lightly, not after Winters went to Weaverville and walked away with a 43-42 win. After seeing Winters win at Las Plumas midseason, I just think Durham has the weapons on the outside, and I don’t think Winters has enough in the secondary. Durham also might have a big day on special teams.
No. 5 Etna at No. 1 Maxwell. Winner: Maxwell. Etna advanced by virtue of an ineligible player used by Chester. Don’t think it matters if Etna uses the same player against Maxwell. Maxwell wins 10th straight game.
No. 3 Fall River at No. 2 Biggs. Winner: Biggs. This will be close as Fall River will have its sophomore starting quarterback for this one. Bulldogs didn’t in the 34-16 Biggs victory in the Wolverines’ opener. Still think nothing stops the Biggs’ train short of the championship game.
Butte Valley at Redding Christian. Winner: Redding Christian. If this was in Dunsmuir, this would be different. Butte Valley made sure of that by knocking off unbeaten and No. 1 Dunsmuir. Does beating the top team mean Butte Valley’s the favorite? Don’t think so. Reminds me of a quote from ”Breaking Bad.” As Mike said, “Just because you shot Jesse James, don’t make you Jesse James.”
OK, remember down below are the Twitter addresses for game updates.
Here’s how I’ve done:
Week Zero: 3-0.
Week 1: 6-6.
Week 2: 7-4.
Week 3: 7-3.
Week 4: 10-2.
Week 5: 7-4.
Week 6: 8-3.
Week 7: 12-3.
Week 8: 12-1.
Week 9: 15-3.
Week 10: 18-0!
First Round/Quarterfinals: 13-3.
I’m 70-10 the past 5 weeks. Hmmm… I’d say 60 percent of the time, I pick right all the time, but it’s even better than that. I’m kind of a big deal you know.
The right stuff: Foothill over Shasta, Chico over Pleasant Valley, West Valley over Lassen, Orland over Corning, Central Valley over Wheatland, Sutter over Lassen, Colusa over Williams, Durham over Pierce, Maxwell over Quincy, Chester over Etna (Etna later advanced because of an ineligible player), Fall River over Portola, Biggs over Weed, Redding Christian over Big Valley.
Didn’t see these coming: Hamilton over Willows, Winters over Trinity, Butte Valley over Dunsmuir.
So on the season: 118-32.
Can’t make it to the games?
Here’s who to follow on Twitter for certain games:
Fall River at Biggs, @JShufelberger.
Chico at Paradise, @jtlarson and for photos and videos from the one and only @JasonHalley_ER.
Orland at West Valley, @tjholmes_RS.
Winters at Durham, @TravisSouders.
Central Valley at Sutter, @ADKirkBarron.
Foothill at Enterprise, @tlawrence_RS.
Feel free to throw some picks of your own in the comments section.