For the first time in the four years of Pick 6, yours truly is trailing.
The one season SWX sports director Sam Adams beat me came the last week of the state playoffs.
Now I’ve got to take a page out of Adams’ playbook and come from behind.
Sam had his best week of the season last week, going 5-1 to push his season total to 14-10. I went 3-3 again and stand a laughable 12-12 overall.
Even though we don’t have any differences, I need to bounce back this week.
East Valley at Cheney, Friday, 7
Lee: Great Northern League play begins Friday and we need to brace ourselves for everything wacky. These teams have a common opponent. North Central rallied late to beat East Valley in a season opener and Cheney knocked off NC 22-21 the following week. The Blackhawks must find a way to slow down Knights receiver Rodrick Jackson. While both teams are 2-2, EV’s wins have been more impressive to me than Cheney’s victories. So, for no other reason. EV, 26-22.
Adams: It’s one thing to schedule tough. It’s another thing to schedule tough and win games. EV did that last week by stunning Lake City, 40-30, behind a monster night from wide receiver Rodrick Jackson. Look for the Knights to avenge a 35-7 loss to Cheney last year with a win on the Blackhawks’ home turf. EV, 35-28.
Clarkston at Pullman, Friday, 7
Lee: Not much you can glean from the teams’ nonleague schedules except each played Moscow. Clarkston prevailed by a point while Pullman handled its border rival by 45. That’s significant. The home team gets the nod from me. Pullman, 35-30.
Adams: We might have one of the more competitive games of the night out in Pullman. The Greyhounds have responded from a season-opening loss to Fife by winning their last three. They’ve outscored Moscow and Bonners Ferry in back-to-back weeks, 98-7. This win won’t be nearly as dominant, but I’m forecasting a Pullman victory to open GNL play. Pullman, 27-20.
Lakeside at Freeman, Friday, 7
Lee: This begins the toughest stretch of the Scotties’ league schedule with games the next two weeks at Deer Park and home against Colville. The Scotties have pitched four shutouts, outscoring opponents 166-0. Lakeside fell short 20-13 against Deer Park last week. Freeman isn’t likely to throw another shut out but I see the Scotties holding off the Eagles. Freeman, 28-14.
Adams: Is it time to hop back on the bandwagon? Freeman would say so. The Scotties have yet to surrender a point through four games this season, shutting out Timberlake, Bonners Ferry, Medical Lake, and Chewelah. But it hasn’t just been the defense. Ben Darcy is coming off a 254-yard, four touchdown performance last week, and he could be the key to another Northeast A League win at home against Lakeside. Freeman, 35-17.
Sandpoint at Lake City, Friday, 7
Lee: The Timberwolves need a win heading into league play next week. They continued their up-and-down play in a 40-30 loss at EV last Friday. Sandpoint got the snot knocked out of them by a very good Lewiston team. Turnovers have plagued Lake City this season. I think this is a coin flip. And my coin comes up Lake City. LC, 28-21.
Adams: This one is a real head scratcher. Which version of which team is going to show up? LC has been especially enigmatic, alternating wins and losses over the first five weeks of the season, including a shocking 40-30 loss to East Valley. Sandpoint, meanwhile, has had a crazy nonconference schedule that could very well have the Bulldogs sitting at 4-1 instead of their current 2-3 predicament. The fact that LC is playing at home bodes well for the Timberwolves, who desperately need another win before kicking off league play next week. LC, 21-14.
Ferris vs. Shadle Park, Friday, Albi, 5
Lee: At 3-1, the Highlanders bring some momentum into this game. They’ve played much better than I anticipated. Their only loss was respectable, 29-20 at West Valley to open the season. After three straight losses to open the season, Ferris bounced back to shut out North Central last week. And the Saxons have running back Jonny Via back from a summer knee injury. Ferris’ defense will be the difference. Ferris, 27-13.
Adams: Shadle Park has increasingly ramped up its schedule over the last three weeks and has three wins to show for it over Lakeside, East Valley and University. Ferris, meanwhile, finally got in the win column last week with a shutout victory over North Central after a tremendously challenging slate of games that featured the defending state champs (Gonzaga Prep) and a road trip to Denver (Ralston Valley). This is about as even a matchup you’re going to find between the GSL 4A and 3A ranks, and I think the Saxons will prevail … barely. Ferris, 21-18.
Mead vs. Mt. Spokane, Friday, Albi, 7:30
Lee: Both teams impressed me last week. Mead bounced back from a difficult loss to Central Valley and Mt. Spokane played well defensively in a 14-7 loss to CV. Mead will be without running back EJ Bade, who was ejected last week. Still, the Panthers have more weapons than the Wildcats. This should be tight because rivalries are that way. Mead, 17-7.
Adams: Can the Panthers finally beat the Wildcats in the Battle of the Bell? Mead last beat Mt. Spokane in the rivalry game in 2012. All of the players have since graduated, meaning not a single Wildcat knows what it’s like to lose the Bell. I’m pretty sure I’ve picked against the Wildcats more than I’ve picked them in this rivalry, but the streak has to end sometime. Right? Mead, 28-27.
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