Steve and I will go head-to-head in Tribskin Pick’em throughout the season for our annual dinner bet. I lead the overall series, two years to one.
Last Week: Robledo (11-4); Ramirez (13-2).
Season: Robledo (178-54); Ramirez (175-57).
Last week: Steve picked up a pair of wins and now trails by just three heading into Friday’s quarterfinals. We both missed taking Bishop Amat and Azusa, but I also took Arroyo and Baldwin Park, who lost to San Dimas and Schurr respectively, which were two games Ramirez picked correctly.
This week: To make it interesting, we will pick the remaining games in the Southeast, Inland and Mid-Valley Division, where six of our local teams remain. The most intriguing game is Bonita at Muir, which is where I’m headed this week. It’s a tough game for the Bearcats for several reasons, like being on the road where there are only about 500 seats for the visitors, a venue that can be quite intimidating. Muir is a big-game type of team too. They may fall asleep during the regular season, but when they’re inspired, they can play with anyone as we saw against Charter Oak last year, and again this year with their upset over La Mirada 33-14 in the first round. For teams that wish to throw it, like Bonita, it can be dangerous because of the Mustangs’ speedy and athletic corners. But I like Bonita because they can run too, and the way to beat Muir is to pound it all night because that’s been their weakness for years, their rush defense. Even though they moved the ball offensively at times against Bishop Amat earlier this year, they couldn’t stop Amat’s run game at all. You can pencil West Covina into the next round, but I’m afraid all we will have left is San Dimas in the Mid-Valley after Friday out of respect for the Olympic League, which went 3-0 and proved what everyone’s been saying, that they have the best league in the division from top to bottom. I would have liked Covina’s chances at home against Whittier Christian, but not on the road at Whittier College. CalPreps’ computers has Covina winning 29-22, but that’s probably because they factored in the Colts’ win over West Covina back in the beginning of the season, and we know what would happen if they played now. I’m rooting for the Colts, but after what happened to Azusa, I’m not betting against Olympic League teams unless one of them goes up against Monrovia. Speaking of the Olympic, that means I have Rosemead going down, and going down hard to Village Christian. Chino Hills is rather fortunate to get Etiwanda in the second round of the powerful Inland. Not a bad draw when you can face the weakest of the eight remaining, so I like their chances of moving on. So, after Friday we should have four remaining, West Covina, Bonita, San Dimas and Chino Hills.
Friday’s games and predictions
All games scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
Santa Fe (7-4) at West Covina (10-1) — Robledo (WCovina); Ramirez (WCovina)
Burbank Burroughs (7-4) at Mayfair (7-4) — Robledo (Mayfair); Ramirez (Mayfair)
Bonita (10-1) at Muir (7-4) — Robledo (Bonita); Ramirez (Muir)
La Serna (10-1) at Norwalk (7-4) — Robledo (La Serna); Ramirez (La Serna)
Rosemead (8-3) at Village Christian (7-4) — Robledo (Village Christian); Ramirez (Village Chr.)
Covina (10-1) vs. Whittier Christian (10-1) — Robledo (Whittier Christian); Ramirez (Covina)
Maranatha (8-3) at San Dimas (7-4) — Robledo (San Dimas); Ramirez (San Dimas)
Schurr (7-5) at Monrovia (9-2) — Robledo (Monrovia); Ramirez (Monrovia)
Corona Centennial (11-0) at Upland (8-3) — Robledo (Centennial); Ramirez (Centennial)
Chino Hills (9-2) at Etiwanda (6-5) — Robledo (CHills); Ramirez (CHills)
Rancho Cucamonga (10-1) at Corona Roosevelt (9-2) — Robledo (Rancho); Ramirez (Roosevelt)
Vista Murrieta (10-1) at Norco (9-2) — Robledo (Norco); Ramirez (VMurrieta)