It could have been a much rougher week than it turned out.
Both Sam Adams and I were staring at 2-4 efforts before we got some late help from Pullman and University. In Pullman’s case it was triple overtime. In U-Hi’s case how about the last play?
We didn’t differ on any games last week so yours truly takes a one-game lead into the postseason. In the Great Northern League’s case, those teams conclude regular-season play this week.
We’ll extend this as long as we have six area teams alive.
Two Greater Spokane League 4A teams and three 3A teams have play-in games for state playoff berths this week. Since 2006 – according to GSL record keeper Mike Schock – the GSL is 44-19 against Mid-Columbia Conference/Old Big Nine teams. I’d take that percentage as a picker.
The GSL should fare well this time around, too.
Last week: Adams 4-2 (36-18 overall), Lee 4-2 (37-17)
Skyview (Nampa) at Lakeland
Lee: Skyview 36-17. This is a matchup of Hawks of different feathers – the Hawks of Nampa and Hawks of Rathdrum. Second-ranked Skyview has won eight in a row since a season-opening 14-10 loss to No. 1-ranked Bishop Kelly. Skyview scores at a prolific rate. Lakeland’s defense will be stretched.
Adams: Lakeland 20-13. Lakeland is the ultimate blue collar, bring-your-lunch-pail-to-work team. Playoff wins have been few and far between in their neck of the woods, but I smell an upset.
Timberline at Coeur d’Alene
(Friday, 7 p.m.)
Lee: CdA 44-14. To be honest, it shouldn’t be that close. Timberline is the fifth Boise-area team to be given – notice I didn’t say EARN – a playoff berth. Timberline essentially replaces a second Inland Empire League team, or in this case Lake City, which was definitely playoff worthy. Gunnar Amos returns at quarterback for CdA, who should make a strong statement as they pursue a third state title in the last four years.
Adams: CdA 42-21. Gunnar Amos has been cleared to play after sustaining a concussion against LC. This CdA team is even better than last year’s edition that went to the 5A title game. The Viks will have no problem with Timberline.
Colville at Pullman
(Friday, 7 p.m.)
Lee: Pullman 30-13. Can you say revenge? A year ago, Pullman was cruising along when the Indians shocked the Greyhounds. The only way Colville can win this game is if the points are in the teens, and I don’t see the Greyhounds being slowed down in a game that decides a state playoff berth.
Adams: Pullman 22-21. Pullman will cap off a wild and wacky season in the Great Northern League with a wild and wacky win.
Mt. Spokane vs. Southridge
(Friday, Lampson Stadium, 5 p.m.)
Lee: Mt. Spokane 28-20. There’s no question in my mind that the Wildcats are the best second seed in this matchup. Southridge emerged as the best of a bad lot of MCC 3A teams. Reportedly Mt. Spokane QB Stu Stiles is injured. If he plays the Suns won’t be able to slow the Wildcats down.
Adams: Mt. Spokane 21-14. Mt. Spokane is seeing just how much a difference a healthy, mobile QB can make. Look for the Wildcats to eat up large chunks of time on drives and gut out a win.
Gonzaga Prep vs. Chiawana
(Friday, Edgar Brown Stadium, 7 p.m.)
Lee: Chiawana 31-24. This is a very winnable game for the Bullpups. I saw the Riverhawks three weeks ago lose at Lake City. They were uninspired and it was probably a timely loss. Chiawana is blessed with a talented QB and a couple of complementary RBs. The Bullpups have their share of weapons, too, but their defense will be stretched to the limit.
Adams: G-Prep 35-28. G-Prep is coming off a convincing win against Central Valley and may have found its stride at just the right time. The Bullpups will pull off the upset on the road.
Richland vs. Ferris
(Friday, Albi, 5:30 p.m.)
Lee: Ferris 28-21. Richland is legit. Ferris got all it could handle in a postseason tuneup against Mead. I’ve been tracking this for a while and the Saxons’ offense is very much run heavy. The passing game hasn’t developed like I thought it would. The Saxons could win comfortably if they find some consistency in the air. Otherwise, they’ll have to gut it out.
Adams: Ferris 28-17. Richland throws the ball well. Ferris defends it even better. The Saxons had a stellar game plan against the top passer in the Northwest – Brett Rypien and company – and they should do the same against the Bombers.