Neither Sam Adams nor yours truly can take control of Pick 6.
And we’ve had opportunities to be sure.
We limped to 3-3 records last week. We can say this is our worst year ever in terms of percentages. We’re usually near .700; if we round up Adams’ percentage, it’s .600. Our percentages would be higher if we featured nothing but blowouts. But that wouldn’t be any fun.
Adams is 25-17 and Lee is 24-18.
We trudge on – seemingly gluttons for punishment.
Moscow vs. Sandpoint, Friday, Lake City, 7
Lee: I’ve been a believer in the Bulldogs all season so I’m not going to bail now. The winner earns the 4A IEL second playoff berth. As we know, Moscow and Lakeland went to overtime two weeks ago before the Hawks prevailed 28-21. It may not be a home game but it’s the closest thing to it. Sandpoint must win this with defense. Sandpoint 20-14.
Adams: IEL 4A frontrunner Lakeland is the obvious common opponent, though both Moscow and Sandpoint have lost to the Hawks by nearly identical margins. You can’t even go homefield in this matchup since War Memorial Field is being torn down, leaving Sandpoint to play Moscow at Lake City. The only thing I can lean on - besides good old fashioned homework on each team - is past history, which would suggest the Bulldogs have the edge. They have beaten the Bears every year dating back to their last loss in 2012. Sandpoint 21-14.
Coeur d’Alene at Post Falls, Friday, 7
Lee: The winner earns the 5A IEL second playoff berth. And both teams have an outside chance for an at-large berth with a loss. The Trojans are heavy underdogs but they’ve been in this spot before in past years. The problem I see is Post Falls can’t manufacture enough offense to keep up with the Vikings. CdA 42-14.
Adams: It’s worth mentioning that almost exactly one year ago, Post Falls wrapped up the season with a stunning 24-21 win over CdA. Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it, but I doubt Shawn Amos and his coaching staff will let that happen. Few offenses come close to rivaling that of the Vikings, and the Trojans just don’t have the horses to keep up in this kind of race. Unless Post Falls turns into a mudpit, CdA should pull out the win and the second bid to state. CdA 49-21.
East Valley at West Valley, Friday, 7
Lee: Two of the Knights’ losses were to teams the Eagles beat. On the surface that should make this an easy pick. It’s another common opponent – Cheney – in which both EV and WV won that gives me the most insight. EV defeated Cheney 47-34 and WV stopped Cheney 14-6. The Eagles have a better defense than the Knights. And that’s what wins games this time of the year. WV 27-21.
Adams: The wind got taken out of EV’s sails last Friday in a 37-28 home loss to Clarkston. Now they travel to rival WV with playoff implications. The Eagles have the superior record (6-1) and the defense to back it up. This is your classic explosive offense versus relentless defense matchup. I’m told defense wins championships, but I’m giving the edge to the Knights, who should be able to muster a couple of big plays to hand their arch nemesis a loss in the rivalry for the first time since 2010. EV 21-13.
Asotin vs. Northwest Christian, Friday, Chattaroy, 7
Lee: The Crusaders impressed me last Friday. They can secure the league title outright. Asotin can cause a three-way tie. The Crusaders won’t let that happen. Asotin will be out for a measure of revenge after falling to NWC on a field goal with four seconds to go in a playoff game last year. NWC 32-24.
Adams: Boy, could Asotin throw a monkey wrench into the operation with a win in Chattaroy. We could have a three-way tie for the league title unless NWC takes care of business. The way the Crusaders played in last week’s 36-26 win over Liberty, I don’t see why not. They were “held” to a season low 36 points in that win, while surrendering a season high 26 points. In other words, this was statistically their worst performance of the season and they still got the win. Even at their worst, this team is the league’s best. NWC 43-35.
Newport at Freeman, Friday, 7
Lee: The Grizzlies, behind quarterback Koa Pancho, have quietly been positioning themselves. They’re in second place, leading Freeman, Colville and Lakeside by a game. Newport finishes next week against league-leading Deer Park. The common opponent that caught my attention is Colville. Three weeks ago Colville beat Newport 35-14. Last week, Freeman beat Colville 21-7. Freeman, which lost by a combined 11 points to Deer Park and Lakeside, bounced back last week. The Scotties continue their upward climb Friday. Freeman 28-20.
Adams: I’m quite honestly done trying to figure out Freeman. I jump on the bandwagon, the Scotties knock me off. I jump off, they drag me through the mud. This game will be, simply put, decided by Freeman. If the Scotties show up and play to their ability, they’ll avoid the upset. But if they don’t, Newport will be the surprise of the conference. Freeman 28-17.
Shadle Park vs. Mt. Spokane, Thursday, Albi, 7:15
Lee: For all intents and purposes this game will decide the 3A league title. The teams have no common opponents. Not even one crossover game against a 4A team that could tell us something. This is a gut call. I should probably go against my gut because I’ve probably lost most of those calls this fall. While Mt. Spokane has played a slightly more challenging schedule, the Wildcats may have difficulty slowing down Highlander running back Xavier Wicks. This should be a competitive game. Shadle Park 22-21.
Adams: The Highlanders and Wildcats are playing for the league title, and it’s looking like this one could be a toss-up. Both are coming off impressive shutout victories, but really don’t give us much of a sample size when it comes to common opponents. The Mt. Spokane team that I have seen this season has some upside, but lacks consistency. If they can put together a full four quarters, this might be just the boost the Wildcats need late in the season with the playoffs just a couple of weeks away. Mt. Spokane 31-22.