- High School
Picks for Games on 10/25, 10/26 and 10/27
Welcome to Week 9 of the high school football season. Chick’s Picks learned a hard lesson last week. Several teams playing non-conference games decided to rest their starters in order to be better prepared for key games this week. This, in turn, damaged Chick’s Picks’ stellar record as a result of the numerous unforeseen losses.
Rather than dwelling on the negatives, Chick’s Picks instead took a moment to reflect on a time when she, herself, was rested as a starter. A few seasons back, the boss decided to bench Chick’s Picks in Week 10, hoping to give her time to clear her head and her crystal ball before the playoffs. Sam Hall was selected as the substitute prognosticator, but turned in a dismal 30-36 record. Despite his lack of success, Sam immediately became a fan favorite, which boosted his status, along with his ego, to Network superstar.
Chick’s Picks was glad that her being rested as a starter could have such an immediate impact on Sam’s career growth with the Network. She was not as thrilled that the starters rested last week resulted in a 54-12 (82%) record, bringing her season totals to 366-99 (79%). Here are this week’s predictions:
Agree with her picks? Disagree? Chick’s Picks wants to hear from you! Be sure to follow her on Twitter @ChicksPicksMSA. Don’t forget to tweet your scores to us @MSASports or use #MSAScores!
#3 Mount Lebanon (7-1) at #5 Upper St. Clair (7-1)
The Panthers host the Blue Devils to wrap up Southeastern Conference play Friday night. Upper St. Clair recorded its third shutout of the season last week, 31-0 over Plum. Mount Lebanon knocked off Penn Hills, 35-7. Blue Devils QB Tyler Roth ranks first in Class AAAA with 1,720 yards and 23 touchdowns. The Panthers boast do-it-all QB Pete Coughlin, who has not only passed for 886 yards and 11 touchdowns, but also leads the team with 373 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. Upper St. Clair’s defense ranks second in Class AAAA, behind only North Allegheny, allowing only 7.4 points per game. Chick’s Picks thinks it will be the stingy Panthers defense that helps secure a share of the conference title.
Upper St. Clair over Mount Lebanon.
#3 West Mifflin (8-0) at #2 Thomas Jefferson (8-0)
West Mifflin and Thomas Jefferson face off for the Big Nine Conference title Friday night. The Titans and Jaguars maintained their perfect records last week with wins over Trinity (35-7) and Uniontown (49-8), respectively. This matchup features the top two offenses in Class AAA, with West Mifflin averaging 40.8 points per game and Thomas Jefferson averaging 44.8 points per game. The Jaguars high-powered offense is led by Class AAA’s top-rated QB, Joe Carroll, who has passed for 1,633 yards and 31 touchdowns. West Mifflin relies heavily on the running game, led by Jim Wheeler’s 1,543 yards and 19 touchdowns. Chick’s Picks likes the Jaguars to air it out and wrap up a perfect regular season.
Thomas Jefferson over West Mifflin.
#8 South Allegheny (7-1) at #2 South Fayette (8-0)
South Fayette looks to complete a perfect regular season Friday night when South Allegheny comes to town in Century Conference action. The Lions recorded their fifth shutout of the season last week, 42-0 over South Park. The Gladiators stopped Steel Valley last week, 14-6, earning them a spot in the MSA Sports Top 10. Their reward? Facing the top defense in the WPIAL this week. South Fayette has allowed only 24 points all season. The Lions, on the other side of the ball, boast the WPIAL’s top passer in Brett Brumbaugh who has 1,944 yards and 30 touchdowns on the year. Chick’s Picks recognizes the Gladiators’ significant turnaround from last year’s one-win season, but the Lions will have their number in this one.
South Fayette over South Allegheny.
#7 Union (6-2) at #4 Neshannock (7-1)
Neshannock plays host to Union in a Big Seven Conference clash Friday night. Last week, the Lancers routed North Catholic, 42-7, while Union topped South Side Beaver, 36-19. Neshannock’s only loss this season came to Rochester, 28-21, in Week 6. Union has dropped two games this season: to Rochester, 21-19 in Week 3, and to Sto-Rox, 48-21 in Week 6. The Lancers pulled a stunning upset over that same Sto-Rox squad, 35-34, in Week 3. These two are comparable defensively, both allowing 15 points per game. Neshannock excels offensively, scoring more than 40 points per game—12 more than Union. Lancers QB Ernie Burkes has passed for 1,121 yards and 13 touchdowns on the season. Chick’s Picks predicts that the Lancers will roll right into the postseason after a win in this one.
Neshannock over Union.
Altoona over Connellsville
Gateway over McKeesport
Kiski Area over Latrobe
Penn-Trafford over Hempfield
Northern Eight Conference
Pittsburgh Central Catholic over Butler
North Allegheny over North Hills
Seneca Valley over Fox Chapel
Bethel Park over Baldwin
Woodland Hills over Penn Hills
Peters Township over Canon-McMillan
Pine-Richland over Plum
Shaler over Norwin
Big Nine Conference
Belle Vernon over Albert Gallatin
Ringgold over Trinity
Uniontown over Laurel Highlands
Greater Allegheny Conference
Franklin Regional over Derry
Indiana over Hollidaysburg
Knoch over Highlands
Mars over Hampton
Blackhawk over Ambridge
Montour over Moon
New Castle over Hopewell
West Allegheny over Chartiers Valley
Elizabeth Forward over Greensburg-Salem
Burrell over Deer Lakes
Shady Side Academy over Kittanning
Freeport over Summit Academy
Valley over Ford City
Keystone Oaks over Burgettstown
Steel Valley over McGuffey
Seton-LaSalle over South Park
Charleroi over Brownsville
Washington over Waynesburg
Yough over Southmoreland
Jeannette over Greensburg Central Catholic
Aliquippa over Beaver
New Brighton over Mohawk
Freedom over Riverside
Central Valley over Beaver Falls
Quaker Valley over Ellwood City
Mount Pleasant over East Allegheny
Big Seven Conference
Laurel over Shenango
Rochester over Sto-Rox
Western Beaver over South Side Beaver
Black Hills Conference
Bishop Canevin over Serra Catholic
Brentwood over California
Chartiers-Houston over Fort Cherry
Clairton over Imani Christian
Monessen over Carlynton
Apollo-Ridge over West Shamokin
Northgate over Avonworth
North Catholic over Leechburg
Springdale over Riverview
Tri-County South Conference
Avella over Bentworth
Jefferson-Morgan over Geibel
Frazier over Mapletown
Carmichaels over West Greene
Beth-Center over Vincentian Academy
Wilkinsburg over Our Lady of the Sacred Heart
PITTSBURGH CITY LEAGUE SEMIFINALS:
University Prep over Brashear
Perry over Allderdice