A three-loss week is a good way to go into the finale. With some of these games starting in 90 minutes or less, time to man up and make some picks.
Redlands East Valley at Redlands
This isn’t until tomorrow, but a crosstown rivalry between the No. 1 and No. 5 teams in the area, who are both undefeated in league going into the league finale, is going to get top billing. That’s the way it is. REV has never won three in a row against the Terriers and Dodge Field should be rocking for the first-ever on-campus meeting between the two. However, I think REV has too many weapons.
Redlands East Valley 24, Redlands 17
Etiwanda at Rancho Cucamonga
The battle of teams upset by Los Osos (guess it’s disingenuous to call them upsets now) should be a high-scoring doozy, as both of these teams can score from any point of the field. Of course, I said the same thing before Upland and Rancho played in the regular-season finale last year, only to see a 13-2 game in gale-force winds. Barring a hurricane, this should be fun.
Rancho Cucamonga 41, Etiwanda 32
Ayala at Glendora
Ayala has lost two in a row, with a third loss in a row likely sealing a playoff-less fate. Glendora has the capability of rising up, as its already defeated Chino Hills this season. Ayala hasn’t fared well against quality competition, which the Tartans certainly are. I’m taking Glendora.
Glendora 23, Ayala 14
Riverside Patriot at Summit
This is the game I’ll be at in less than 90 minutes, as for the second straight year Summit has a live-or-die Thursday night game. They made a spirited comeback to beat Bloomington in this spot next year, but shouldn’t need one this time around. Summit finishes the job.
Summit 31, Patriot 20
Granite Hills at Barstow
One of two live-or-die Desert Sky League games, as the Aztecs are faced with being shut out of the playoffs a year after going to the CIF final if they lose to Granite Hills, which has already won more games this season than any other time in school history. Even though Barstow’s previous three losses have come at home, I’m going with the Aztecs in this spot.
Barstow 26, Granite Hills 21
Ridgecrest Burroughs at Victor Valley
The other DSL elimination game has the resurgent Jackrabbits, fresh off a one-point victory at Barstow, playing the battle-tested Burros. This has been a year of big steps for Victor Valley, which has taken down rivals Apple Valley and Barstow. Add ‘making the playoffs’ to those steps.
Victor Valley 24, Ridgecrest Burroughs 19
Ontario Christian at Aquinas
For the 8th straight year, this game is going to decide the Christian League title. Both of these teams have had their share of ups and downs to get to this point, but all is good in the Christian League world apparently. It’s been good for the Falcons in this matchup the last two years and I think it will be again, as Aquinas has too many weapons for the Knights.
Aquinas 35, Ontario Christian 17
Garey at Don Lugo
The Vikings have had quite a resurgence and have the horses to come in and upset Don Lugo, which boasts two elite players in DT George Uko and DB/RB Steven Bethley. Garey has some players, but I have a feeling that they’ll have to wait a year for their turn.
Don Lugo 27, Garey 17
Apple Valley at Hesperia
League play has been rocky for both of these schools, but things have fallen to where winning this game will make things a heck of a lot more enjoyable for one of the two. Apple Valley has just missed the playoffs the last two years and should finish the job this time around.
Apple Valley 34, Hesperia 16
Cajon at Arroyo Valley
Seems weird to have an SAL game this far down on the list, but there’s no league championship or playoff invitation being settled in this matchup – just second and third place. However, this will be a fun game to watch, as junior QBs Thomas Carter (Cajon) and Michael Yearwood (Arroyo Valley) should star. I’ll go with the Cowboys in a close one.
Cajon 30, Arroyo Valley 27
Other games of note:
Los Osos 45, Alta Loma 6
Upland 23, Claremont 10
Miller 53, Eisenhower 20
Yucaipa 37, Carter 34
Fontana 28, Rialto 14
Big Bear 20, Desert Hot Springs 16
Yucca Valley 24, Desert Mirage 13
Serrano 48, Sultana 0
Colony 45, Montclair 7
Chaffey 38, Ontario 0
Colton 60, Pacific 0
San Gorgonio 48, San Bernardino 31
Chino Hills 41, Diamond Bar 10
Damien 37, Chino 6
Kaiser 51, Jurupa Valley 0
Norte Vista 34, Bloomington 14
Arrowhead Christian 20, Boron 18
Oak Hills 55, Citrus Valley 6