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- Written by DRH
- Published on September 1, 2008
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Though it’s the second week of action, it’s actually Week One, given that the first Friday of every season was dubbed Zero Week a number of years ago when only a few teams opted to play before the start of the “actual” season. So there you go. It’s technically Week One, though just about everybody has a game under their belt already. Go figure.
Churchill (0-1) @ Summit (0-1)
Churchill lost big to a great team, Summit lost by a little to a poor team. Not that either means anything as it relates to this game, but look for the Lancers to shake off their performance in the opener with a win. Churchill has the athletes to separate themselves from the Storm, who continue to search for continuity. Knapp should find the endzone more than once.
Churchill 28, Summit 7
Marshfield (1-0) @ Marist (0-1)
Marshfield beat rival North Bend to open things up, and Marist lost 56-42 in a defensively challenged Zero Week game against Central. Marist won this meeting last year in Susick, but whether that translates into 2008 remains to be seen. Central can ball, there’s no question about that, but are they that good offensively, or is Marist going to get exposed on defense on a weekly basis? Kyle Tedder and the Pirate offense hope it’s the latter. I’m taking Marist, at home and ready to prove themselves against a 5A school.
Marist 24, Marshfield 20
Crook County (0-1) @ North Eugene (0-1)
Crook County lost to 3A Gold Beach on Thursday, which, despite Gold Beach’s obvious strengths, is a staggering statement given the student enrollments of the two schools. I got burned badly last week by NE, but I just can’t see them losing to CCC in their home opener. Look for Bibbee to cross the century mark again and be the dominant force in this game.
North Eugene 35, Crook County 14
Silverton (1-0) @ Springfield (1-0)
I like what’s being done up at Silverton, and they smacked St. Helen’s during Zero Week. That said, I really like what Springfield’s doing, and the Silke faithful will show up in droves as the rejuvenated Miller Mob comes home for the first time in ’08. Silverton shut down Thurston’s highly productive run game last year better than anybody else, so it’ll be interesting to see how they play Jarvis. QB Zack Taylor’s continued development will be important.
Springfield 27, Silverton 13
Thurston (1-0) @ South Albany (1-0)
Combined, these two combined to put up 123 points in their Zero Week openers. Expect some offense, but here’s thinking Thurston will play a little more defense than Liberty did last week when South Albany piled up 63 points. It’ll be interesting to see how South chooses to attack Thurston on defense – most would argue that Corvallis and South Albany are comparable this year, and the Colts dropped 60 on the Spartans. I wouldn’t expect a similar output on the road, but I think SA will need to control the clock to keep Tym Pearson off the field as much as possible. They return a 1,000 yard rusher, but are seeking more balance with an improved passing attack. The aerial game should be put to the test, especially if Thurston takes a sizable lead. Albany could be forced to go to the air while playing catch-up.
Thurston 38, South Albany 21
Willamette (1-0) @ Klamath Union (0-1)
Both Will-Hi and KU played 4A schools last week, so both are getting their first taste of live 5A action. Willamette took out Cottage Grove 33-17, Klamath lost to North Valley 9-7. If KU failed to move the ball against North Valley, expect Willamette to distance themselves from the Pelicans over the course of four quarters of football. I just don’t see Craig Loper tied down for long.
Willamette 21, Klamath Union 6
Last Week: 5-1
Season Total: 5-1
Grants Pass (1-0) @ Centennial (0-1)
Tigard dropped a 60-spot on Centennial in the opener, so expect GP to come out firing for the endzone as they take to the road for the first time. The Cavers weren’t really tested in their opener, a glorified walk-through against Hood River Valley, so some questions remain, but I think GP takes this one.
Grants Pass 27, Centennial 17
Reynolds (0-1) @ North Medford (0-0)
The Black Tornado opted not to play during Zero Week, so they’ll storm onto the field Friday night for the first time in 2008. Playing against a team with a game under their belt is always dangerous, both because game speed is different than practice speed and because a team’s biggest improvement comes between games one and two. That said, I expect North Medford to win this. Reynolds lost 49-7 at home to South Salem last week, and look to be in for a long season. Medford, meanwhile is eying the fourth and final playoff spot in the SWC, and will want to get off to a good start.
North Medford 27, Reynolds 13
McNary (1-0) @ Roseburg (0-1)
Roseburg has me at a crossroads; they alternated wins and losses all of last year, looking poor one week but always bouncing back with a win (before responding with a loss seven days later). They’re also at home. But… expect McNary, a 26-7 winner over David Douglas during Zero Week, to spoil Roseburg’s home opener. Just a hunch.
McNary 28, Roseburg 17
Skyline (WA) vs. Sheldon (1-0)
Wow. This looks like a beauty of a game, a grudge match against two of the top programs in Washington and Oregon. Both are ranked in the national Top 50 according to Rivals.com. While I can see it going either way, Washington prep football is a little bit stronger than Oregon ball, and merely playing the game in Portland doesn’t constitute a true home field advantage for the Irish. I’ll take Skyline, but I truly hope I’m wrong. Sheldon certainly has to horses to compete. (I also pick Sheldon to lose at least one game a year, and I just don’t see them losing to anyone in Oregon this season).
Skyline (WA) 34, Sheldon 30
Gresham (1-0) @ South Eugene (0-0)
I’m taking South Eugene, but I’m going to say outright that should the Axemen lose, I’m going to personally send Gresham a letter of apology after picking against them twice in the opening weeks. Fool me once… fool me twice? Anyway, South is reeling from the losses of Charles Siddoway and Boseko Lokombo, but QB Dustin Haines returns to direct an offense that should be able to put points on the board. The defense should be solid.
South Eugene 19, Gresham 16
South Medford (1-0) @ Evergreen (WA)
While I’m familiar with Skyline (WA), I know next to nothing about Evergreen. Sorry. No pick here (yeah, it’s a cheap cop-out, but I’m comfortable with that). Here’s hoping the Panthers win it for a little state pride.
Last Week: 3-1
Season Total: 3-1
Combined Total: 8-2 (MWL + SWC season totals)