Chick’s Picks offers words of wisdom heading into Week 3

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Thursday, September 12, 2019 | 6:54 PM


As a local celebrity, Chick’s Picks often corresponds with others on her same level of fame. So, it came as no surprise this week when Chick’s Picks received a call from Steelers coach Mike Tomlin.

Tomlin often seeks prognosticating advice from Chick’s Picks when it comes to scouting upcoming opponents. This time, however, he was looking for other words of wisdom.

“Chick’s Picks, how did you do it?” Tomlin asked. “How did you rebound from your terrible performance in Week Zero?”

It was evident that Tomlin was looking for advice on how come back from the Steelers’ disappointing 33-3 loss to the Patriots on Sunday night.

“Well, Coach, it was rather simple,” Chick’s Picks said. “Obviously, the standard is the standard. And my Week Zero did not meet that standard. So, I rallied my crystal ball and got things back on track in Week 1.”

The prognosticator continued, “Listen, Coach, you aren’t in the business of making excuses. You are in the business of playing football. So get out there, play some football, and find a way to win.”

Chick’s Picks can only hope that her pep talk can help Tomlin and the Steelers reach the level of success she did last week. Chick’s Picks finished with an impressive 54-11 (83%) record, upping her season total to 134-50 (73%). Here are this week’s big games:

CLASS 6A

No. 4 Seneca Valley Raiders (1-2) at No. 5 Mt. Lebanon Blue Devils (2-1)

The Blue Devils play host to the Raiders in a Quad County Conference showdown Friday night. Last week, Mt. Lebanon routed Butler, 63-7, while Seneca Valley knocked off Canon-McMillan, 27-7. The Blue Devils have found success with a balanced offense this season. Quarterback Joey Daniels has thrown for 396 yards and four scores. A solid ground attack led by Mason Ventrone, Drew Vaughn, Visawn Pennix and Evan Jones has 700 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns on the year. Raiders veteran quarterback Gabe Lawson has 599 yards through the air. Seneca Valley has been outscored by opponents, 48-52, in its first three games. Mt. Lebanon is outscoring opponents by an average of 20 points per game. When these two met last season, the Raiders edged the Blue Devils, 17-14. Chick’s Picks predicts revenge for the Blue Devils this time around. … Mt. Lebanon over Seneca Valley.

CLASS 5A

McKeesport Tigers (2-1) at No. 1 Penn-Trafford Warriors (3-0)

The Tigers hit the road to take on the top-ranked Warriors in Big East Conference action Friday night. McKeesport is coming off a 33-14 loss to District 10 powerhouse Erie Cathedral Prep. Penn-Trafford maintained its perfect record, rolling over Connellsville, 41-7. The Tigers rely heavily on their ground game, behind Tyron Adams-Wagner, quarterback Devari Robinson and Vernon Andrews, who have combined for 600 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns. The Warriors boast a balanced offensive attack, led by quarterback Gabe Dunlap, who has 311 passing yards and 252 rushing yards this season. Caleb Lisbon has racked up 368 rushing yards and six scores for the Warriors as well. When these two met last season, Penn-Trafford topped McKeesport, 20-9. The Warriors took over the top spot after upsetting Gateway in Week 1. Chick’s Picks does not predict any changes this week. … Penn-Trafford over McKeesport.

CLASS 4A

Beaver Bobcats (1-2) at New Castle Red Hurricane (2-1)

The Red Hurricane hosts the Bobcats in a Northwest Eight Conference matchup Friday night. New Castle was bounced out of the Top 5 after a 37-21 loss to South Fayette last week. Beaver looks to rebound after being routed by Knoch last week, 42-7. This marked the second straight loss for the Bobcats after falling to South Fayette, 55-6, in Week 1. The Red Hurricane has found success in the air and on the ground. Quarterback Michael Wells has thrown for 339 yards, while Demetris McKnight has picked up 411 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. Bobcats quarterback Tyler Ziggas has 143 passing yards and 62 rushing yards on the season. When these two met last year, Beaver came away with a 21-13 victory. Chick’s Picks predicts a Red Hurricane win in this one. … New Castle over Beaver.

CLASS 3A

No. 4 Central Valley Warriors (3-0) at No. 2 North Catholic Trojans (2-0)

Central Valley travels to North Catholic in a non-conference battle between Class 3A undefeateds Friday night. Last week, the Warriors knocked off Beaver Falls, 21-6, while the Trojans held off Freeport, 28-20. Both Central Valley and North Catholic boast solid passing games. Warriors’ quarterback Ameer Dudley has thrown for 387 yards and four touchdowns. Zack Rocco has 399 yards and four scores for the Trojans. Central Valley adds backfield depth with Jaylen Guy, who has 323 rushing yards and three touchdowns. Defense has also been key for the Warriors, who have allowed an average of only seven points per game. The Trojans are scoring 41 points per game in their first two games. When these two met last season, North Catholic edged Central Valley, 14-13. Chick’s Picks knows this one could go either way, but the crystal ball is predicting victory for the Warriors. … Central Valley over North Catholic.

CLASS 2A

Apollo-Ridge Vikings (3-0) at East Allegheny Wildcats (2-1)

The Wildcats play host to the Vikings in Allegheny Conference action Friday night. East Allegheny is coming off of a narrow 7-6 win over South Allegheny last week, while Apollo-Ridge defeated Carlynton, 22-7. Wildcats quarterback JD DiNapoli has thrown for more than 400 yards. The Vikings have been getting it done through the air and on the ground. Quarterback Jake Fello has thrown for 274 yards and Logan Harmon has 409 rushing yards. Apollo-Ridge has already won more games this season than last, after finishing with a 2-8 record. When these two faced off last season, East Allegheny rolled to a 34-7 victory. Chick’s Picks predicts a changing of the guard this time around. … Apollo-Ridge over East Allegheny.

CLASS A

No. 3 Sto-Rox Vikings (3-0) at Cornell Raiders (2-0)

Sto-Rox takes on Cornell in a battle between Big Seven Conference undefeated teams Friday night. The Vikings remained perfect with a 43-8 win over Union last week, while the Raiders routed Bentworth, 62-9. Sto-Rox boasts the WPIAL’s top passer in Eric Wilson, who has 868 passing yards already this season. The Vikings are averaging more than 36 points per game. Cornell has a solid passing game of its own behind Zaier Harrison’s 518 yards and six touchdowns. Harrison also leads the Raiders in rushing with 113 yards and four scores. The Raiders have only allowed 17 points in their first two games. When these two met last season, Sto-Rox rolled to a 58-6 victory. Chick’s Picks predicts a closer game this time around, but the same outcome for the Vikings. … Sto-Rox over Cornell.

CLASS 6A

Quad County Conference

North Allegheny over Canon-McMillan

Central Catholic over Hempfield

Pine-Richland over Butler

CLASS 5A

Allegheny Eight Conference

Moon over Baldwin

Peters Township over West Allegheny

Upper St. Clair over Woodland Hills

Big East Conference

Plum over Connellsville

Gateway over Latrobe

Northern Conference

North Hills over Hampton

Kiski over Fox Chapel

Penn Hills over Mars

Non-Conference

Bethel Park over Shaler

Chartiers Valley over Norwin

CLASS 4A

Big Eight Conference

Belle Vernon over Laurel Highlands

Thomas Jefferson over Indiana

Trinity over Ringgold

Northwest Eight Conference

Blackhawk over Ambridge

Knoch over Highlands

Non-Conference

Aliquippa over Montour

Franklin Regional over West Mifflin

South Fayette over Greensburg Salem

CLASS 3A

Big East Conference

Burrell over Uniontown

Deer Lakes over Yough

Elizabeth Forward over Freeport

Derry over Mount Pleasant

Tri-County West Conference

Beaver Falls over Quaker Valley

Keystone Oaks over South Park

Waynesburg over Hopewell

CLASS 2A

Allegheny Conference

Shady Side Academy over Steel Valley

Interstate Conference

Charleroi over Frazier

McGuffey over Carmichaels

Southmoreland over Beth-Center

Washington over Brownsville

Midwestern Conference

Neshannock over Ellwood City

Freedom over Mohawk

Western Beaver over Riverside

Three Rivers Conference

Brentwood over Fort Cherry

Carlynton over South Side

South Allegheny over Seton-LaSalle

Non-Conference

Avonworth over New Brighton

Valley over Imani Christian

Serra Catholic over Shenango

Burgettstown over Summit Academy

CLASS A

Big Seven Conference

Union over Northgate

OLSH over Rochester

Eastern Conference

Greensburg Central Catholic over Leechburg

Clairton over Riverview

Tri-County South Conference

Chartiers-Houston over Bentworth

Jefferson-Morgan over Monessen

West Greene over Mapletown

Non-Conference

Jeannette over Avella

Laurel over California

Springdale over Bishop Canevin

CITY LEAGUE

University Prep over Perry

Westinghouse over Allderdice

Independent

Cardinal Mooney (OH) over Carrick

Non-Conference

Grove City over Brashear

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