Eastern Division quarterfinal predictions

This division messed me up quite a bit last week. Then again, with the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds being upset, I wasn’t the only one who screwed up in their predictions. Hopefully I’ll do a bit better this time around.

Palm Springs at Summit
Thanksgiving came six days early for Summit, as they shocked No. 1 seeded Perris Citrus Hill 48-36 last Friday, breaking Citrus Hill’s 38-game winning streak in the process. I guess Summit could be ripe for a letdown, but Palm Springs whipped Summit in the first round a year ago, so the SkyHawks are looking for revenge. I’m tempted to pick them again, but I think I like Palm Springs to carry this.
Palm Springs 26, Summit 19

Kaiser at Rim of the World
This is the game I’ll be at tomorrow, as the Cats and Fighting Scots get together for the third time in four years. Both teams feature dominating running games, with Kaiser depending on Anthony Brown – who is committed to USC – while Rim rides junior RB Dillon Pretzinger. Kaiser won close battles the last two times they’ve played and will likely do the same in this one.
Kaiser 20, Rim of the World 14

Riverside Norte Vista at Apple Valley
I saw the Sun Devils pull a 48-27 surprise over No. 3 Silverado last week, which marked Apple Valley’s first first-round playoff victory in over 25 years. Norte Vista doesn’t have a long history of success either, so one of these teams will be in the Cinderella role come next week. Having seen both teams at different times this season, I feel that Apple is a bit more balanced and will prevail.
Apple Valley 31, Norte Vista 23

La Quinta at Serrano
The Eastern Division opened up a ton for the No. 2-seeded Diamondbacks last week with Citrus Hill and Silverado going down hard. La Quinta is always a tough out this time of year, but I picked Serrano to win this division for a reason – they are darn good. I see the Diamondbacks being a bit too physical for the Blackhawks.
Serrano 24, La Quinta 13