Chicks Picks – Week Nine – 2017
By: Don Rebel
Thursday, October 26, 2017 | 10:49 PM
Welcome to Week 9 of the high school football season. It’s that time of year again when the fall colors abound. At a quick glance, we can see the many shades of orange, red, yellow, and yes, pink. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Once upon a time, the color pink signified delicacy and femininity. For more than three decades, the color pink has been the universal symbol of breast cancer awareness. Today, the color pink represents some of the strongest human beings on this planet – those battling breast cancer.
Chick’s Picks knows that plenty of pink will be worn around the WPIAL this week. When you suit up Friday night, whether on the field or in the stands, just remember that you are helping to bring awareness and inspire so many in this fight. So, players, coaches, and fans – wear your pink and wear it proud. Chick’s Picks’ Mom thanks you, and so do the countless others fighting this battle.
Chick’s Picks finished last week with a 52-11 (83%) record, improving her season total to 408-104 (80%). Here are this week’s big games:
#1 Pine-Richland (9-0) at #4 North Allegheny (7-2)
North Allegheny plays host to Pine-Richland in a Northern Seven Conference season finale Friday night. Last week, the Tigers rolled over Hempfield, 63-28, while the Rams routed Butler, 64-0. North Allegheny’s versatile quarterback Luke Trueman has passed for 877 yards and 10 touchdowns, and rushed for another 788 yards and six touchdowns. Pine-Richland quarterback Phil Jurkovec ranks among the best in the WPIAL, passing for 2,284 yards and 21 touchdowns on the year. The Rams boast the top offense and defense in Class 6A, averaging 49.9 points per game, while allowing only 9.6. Chick’s Picks predicts that the Rams will close out the regular season with a perfect record.
Pine-Richland over North Allegheny.
#1 Penn-Trafford (9-0) at #3 McKeesport (7-1)
Penn-Trafford looks to stay undefeated as they take on McKeesport in a Big East Conference showdown Friday night. The Warriors are coming off of a 54-19 victory over Kiski Area last week. The Tigers look to rebound after falling to Gateway, 21-18. Penn-Trafford’s versatile offensive attack is led by quarterback Cam Laffoon, who has passed for 1,063 yards and 12 touchdowns on the year. Running back John Gay has racked up 911 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns. McKeesport will rely on its ground game behind running back Layton Jordan, who has rushed for 941 yards and 12 touchdowns on the year. The Tigers’ offensive attack will be challenged by Class 5A’s top defense in the Warriors, who have allowed only 66 points all season. Chick’s Picks likes the Warriors to pick up with road victory.
Penn-Trafford over McKeesport.
#2 South Fayette (9-0) at #4 Montour (7-1)
The Northwest Nine Conference title is on the line Friday night when Montour hosts South Fayette. Last week, the Spartans knocked off Blackhawk, 35-7, while the Lions rolled over Highlands, 49-14. Montour quarterback Kavon Morman has passed for 1,158 yards and 12 touchdowns, and rushed for another nine scores. South Fayette quarterback Drew Saxton leads Class 4A’s top offense, averaging 44 points per game. Saxton has thrown for 1,861 yards and 24 touchdowns this season. Both the Spartans and the Lions boast stingy defenses, allowing fewer than 11 points per game. Chick’s Picks predicts that the Lions will hang on for the conference title.
South Fayette over Montour.
#9 Shady Side Academy (6-2) at #10 Central Valley (5-4)
Central Valley hosts Shady Side Academy in a non-conference showdown between Class 3A Top 10 teams Friday night. The Warriors look to rebound after falling to Aliquippa last week, 34-3. The Indians topped Deer Lakes, 35-6. Central Valley’s backfield duo of Danny Santia and Robert Anzio have combined for over 1,000 yards and 16 touchdowns this season. Junior quarterback Skyy Moore is making a name for himself at Shadyside Academy. Moore has passed for 1,017 and nine touchdowns, and rushed for another 1,128 yards and 23 touchdowns. Chick’s Picks predicts that the Indians will even out the Warriors’ record after this one.
Shady Side Academy over Central Valley.
#2 Washington (8-0) at #9 Beth-Center (7-2)
The Little Prexies hit the road to take on the Bulldogs in a Century Conference battle Friday night. Washington is coming off of a 33-0 rout of Burgettstown last week, while Beth-Center will look to get things back on track after falling to Charleroi, 49-44. The high-powered Washington offense that averages more than 44 points per game relies on both the pass and the run. Quarterback Zack Swartz has thrown for 1,009 yards and 14 touchdowns. Running back Nick Welsh has racked up 1,181 rushing yards and 18 touchdowns. Beth-Center quarterback Bailey Lincoski is approaching 1,000 yards both in the air and on the ground. Dominic Fundy leads the Bulldogs’ ground attack with 1,384 yards and 13 touchdowns. The Little Prexies defense ranks as the best in Class 2A, allowing only 6.5 points per game. Chick’s Picks always likes the better defense all the way.
Washington over Beth-Center.
#1 Jeannette (9-0) at #5 Clairton (6-2)
Clairton hosts Jeannette in a highly anticipated Eastern Conference showdown Friday night. Last week, the Bears blanked Riverview, 56-0, while the Jayhawks routed Mapletown, 47-0. Clairton’s backfield duo of Tre’sean Howard and Aaron Thompson have combined for over 1,000 yards on the year. Jeannette quarterback Robert Kennedy has passed for 1,070 yards and 21 touchdowns, and rushed for a team-best 718 yards and 19 touchdowns. The Bears’ only two losses this season came to Imani Christian and Aliquippa in back-to-back weeks. Chick’s Picks knows that the Jayhawks are seeking revenge for last year’s title game loss, and she think they will get it this time around.
Jeannette over Clairton.
Northern Seven Conference
Central Catholic over Penn Hills
Bethel Park over Mt. Lebanon
Norwin over Hempfield
Canon-McMillan over Butler
Peters Township over Shaler
Allegheny Nine Conference
Baldwin over Chartiers Valley
North Hills over Hampton
West Allegheny over Moon
Upper St. Clair over Woodland Hills
Big East Conference
Armstrong over Kiski Area
Latrobe over Connellsville
Gateway over Franklin Regional
Fox Chapel over Plum
Big Nine Conference
Laurel Highlands over Albert Gallatin
Trinity over Ringgold
Greensburg Salem over Uniontown
Thomas Jefferson over West Mifflin
Northwest Nine Conference
New Castle over Blackhawk
Highlands over Indiana
Mars over Knoch
Belle Vernon over Ambridge
Burrell over Deer Lakes
Freeport over Valley
Seton LaSalle over Keystone Oaks
Beaver Valley Conference
Aliquippa over Hopewell
Beaver over Beaver Falls
Quaker Valley over Ellwood City
Derry over McGuffey
South Park over Yough
Mount Pleasant over Southmoreland
Elizabeth Forward over Burgettstown
Apollo-Ridge over South Allegheny
Charleroi over Brownsville
Frazer over Chartiers-Houston
Cardinal Weurl North Catholic over Freedom
Neshannock over Mohawk
Riverside over New Brighton
Three Rivers Conference
Steel Valley over Brentwood
East Allegheny over Serra Catholic
Laurel over Carlynton
South Side Beaver over Waynesburg
Big Seven Conference
Northgate over Cornell
Union over Shenango
Rochester over Western Beaver
Our Lady of the Sacred Heart over Sto-Rox
Springdale over Greensburg Central Catholic
Imani Christian over Leechburg
Tri-County South Conference
Fort Cherry over Jefferson-Morgan
Monessen over Mapletown
California over West Greene
Summit Academy over Avella
Bentworth over Riverview
Carmichaels over Bishop Canevin
Don Rebel hosts the Rebel Yell podcasts for HSSN.