Chick’s Picks looks to recover in Week 1 after rough start
Welcome to Week 1 of the high school football season.
Maybe Chick’s Picks should have scrimmaged last week rather than making predictions. To say Week Zero was rough on the crystal ball would be putting it mildly. After all of the final scores were in the books, Chick’s Picks sat back to regroup, trying to determine just how her predictions could have gone so terribly wrong.
She even went to the extreme of pulling out the crystal ball troubleshooting guide, though she deemed herself quite the expert on handling and maintaining her prized predicting tool. Chick’s Picks gave the crystal ball one last look over to see if anything may be out of whack. Then, it all made sense.
After joining the TribLive High School Sports Network, Chick’s Picks had had her initials engraved on the underside of her crystal ball. Since there are multiple prognosticators on staff at the Network, Chick’s Picks wanted to avoid any possible mix-ups. Sure enough, the initials read TB.
When the staff pulled the crystal balls out of storage after the offseason, they inadvertently delivered The Birdie’s crystal ball to Chick’s Picks, thus explaining her subpar Week Zero performance. Chick’s Picks can only hope to recover her original crystal ball from The Birdie before Week 1.
Chick’s Picks finished Week Zero with a dismal 33-26 (56 percent) record. Here are this week’s big games:
No. 2 North Allegheny (1-0) at No. 4 Norwin (1-0)
Norwin hosts North Allegheny in Class 6A action Friday night. Last week, the Knights knocked off Penn-Trafford, 44-36, while the Tigers topped COF Academy (Ohio), 45-20. Quarterback Jack Salopek led the way for Norwin, passing for 296 yards and four touchdowns, and rushing for another 71 yards and a score. North Allegheny quarterback Ben Maenza threw for 137 yards and three touchdowns in the Tigers’ victory. Chick’s Picks likes the Tigers on the road win in this one. North Allegheny over Norwin.
No. 3 Peters Township (1-0) at No. 5 Upper St. Clair (1-0)
The Indians take on the Panthers in an Allegheny 8 Conference showdown Friday night. Peters Township is coming off of a 43-7 rout of West Toronto Prep last week, while Upper St. Clair edged South Fayette, 34-33. This week will be a bigger test for Indians starters, who didn’t see much playing time after leading their Week Zero opponent 43-0 at the half. Running back Adrian Williams finished the game with 76 rushing yards and a touchdown. The Panthers got big performances from both their running and passing games in their narrow victory. Jason Sweeney passed for 283 yards and four touchdowns, while Antonio Orsini picked up 160 yards on the ground. Chick’s Picks likes the Panthers at home in this one. Upper St. Clair over Peters Township.
No. 4 Beaver (1-0) at No. 3 South Fayette (0-1)
The Lions welcome the Bobcats Friday night in a Northwest 8 Conference matchup. Last week, South Fayette fell just short to Class 5A rival Upper St. Clair, 34-33. Despite the loss, Lions’ quarterback Jamie Diven had a big performance, throwing for 352 yards and four touchdowns. Beaver won its Week Zero bout against Brashear, 26-8. Gino Mavero found paydirt twice for the Bobcats. Chick’s Picks thinks that the tough test in Week Zero will pay off for the Lions in this one. South Fayette over Beaver.
Derry (1-0) at No. 5 Freeport (0-0)
The Yellowjackets open their season playing host to the Trojans in a Big East Conference showdown Friday night. Freeport will see its first action of the year after a Week Zero scrimmage. Derry won big over Class 5A Latrobe last week, 45-15. Despite a few injuries to key players, the Trojans weren’t slowed down at all in the victory, giving up only one defensive touchdown. Chick’s Picks predicts that the Trojans will earn themselves a spot in the Top 5 after this weekend. Derry over Freeport.
No. 1 Washington (1-0) at No. 5 Charleroi (0-0)
The top-ranked Little Prexies will take on the Century Conference rival Cougars to open regular-season play Friday night. Last week, Washington routed Laurel Highlands, 59-25. The Little Prexies found success in the air and on the ground in the victory. Quarterback Zach Swartz passed for 379 yards and three touchdowns, and also rushed for 94 yards. Dylan Asbury also ran for 113 yards and four touchdowns. Charleroi’s Week Zero plans were canceled after a threat resulted in its scheduled game against Monessen being postponed. Chick’s Picks predicts the Little Prexies will capitalize on the Cougars’ Week Zero break. Washington over Charleroi.
Sto-Rox (0-1) at No. 4 Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (1-0)
The Vikings look for their first win as they take on the Chargers in Big Seven Conference play Friday night. Sto-Rox fell to South Side Beaver in Week Zero, 28-26, while OLSH rolled over Westinghouse, 41-6. Despite the loss, the Vikings got huge offensive performances from Eric Wilson and Ahmad Pack. Wilson threw for nearly 400 yards and four touchdowns. Pack was on the receiving end of Wilson’s passes for 232 yards and three touchdowns. The Chargers were led by Noah Campalong’s two touchdowns. Chick’s Picks predicts a rebound for the Vikings this week. Sto-Rox over OLSH.
Here’s the rest of the picks:
Mt. Lebanon over Canon-McMillan
Central Catholic over Seneca Valley
Pine-Richland over Hempfield
Allegheny 8 Conference
West Allegheny over Chartiers Valley
Woodland Hills over Bethel Park
McKeesport over Connellsville
Gateway over Penn-Trafford
Franklin Regional over Plum
Hampton over Armstrong
North Hills over Fox Chapel
Shaler over Kiski Area
Baldwin over Butler
Penn Hills over Latrobe
Laurel Highlands over Albert Gallatin
Mars over Moon
Big 8 Conference
Thomas Jefferson over Ringgold
Greensburg Salem over Trinity
West Mifflin over Indiana
Northwest 8 Conference
Blackhawk over Knoch
New Castle over Montour
Belle Vernon over Ambridge
Big East Conference
Deer Lakes over Elizabeth Forward
North Catholic over Burrell
Yough over Uniontown
Tri-County West Conference
Aliquippa over Waynesburg
Beaver Falls over South Park
Quaker Valley over Central Valley
Keystone Oaks over Highlands
Hopewell over Mount Pleasant
Avonworth over Valley
Steel Valley over East Allegheny
Apollo-Ridge over Summit Academy
Beth-Center over Carmichaels
Southmoreland over Frazier
Freedom over Shenango
Mohawk over New Brighton
Riverside over Neshannock
Three Rivers Conference
Seton LaSalle over Burgettstown
Carlynton over Fort Cherry
South Allegheny over Brentwood
Shady Side Academy over Brownsville
McGuffey over Northgate
Serra Catholic over Ellwood City
Western Beaver over South Side Beaver
Big Seven Conference
Union over Cornell
Rochester over Laurel
Jeannette over Leechburg
Greensburg Central Catholic over Riverview
Imani Christian over Springdale
Tri-County South Conference
Chartiers-Houston over Jefferson-Morgan
California over Monessen
West Greene over Bentworth
Clairton over Mapletown
Bishop Canevin over Avella
Perry over Brashear
Wheeling Park (W.Va) over Allderdice
Linsly School (W.Va) over Westinghouse