Mail Tribune football forecast
No. 4 Ashland (8-0) at Crater (4-4) Tonight, 7:30, at Dutch Meyer Field Radio broadcast at 6:30 p.m. on KCMX (580-AM) and KMED (1440-AM)
This game has no playoff implications as the unbeaten Grizzlies have already clinched the No. — state playoff berth from the SOC while the Comets are out of the postseason picture. However, both teams have reason to be motivated. The Grizzlies want to keep their edge heading into the playoffs; the Comets have a shot at a winning season. Incentives aside, the Grizzlies own a big advantage in team speed and that will spell the difference. Ashland by 17.
Eagle Point (2-6) at North Medford (5-3) Tonight, 7:30, at Spiegelberg Stadium Radio broadcast at 6:30 p.m. on KTRA (610-AM)
North Medford can reach the state playoffs for the first time since 1995 with a victory over the Eagles, along with some favorable fate on a probable coin toss after the game. The Black Tornado, decimated by injuries earlier this season, is back to full strength. The Tornado also has a new weapon in sophomore tailback Phil Oulette, a speedster who raced for 88 yards and a touchdown in last week's 35-21 victory over Crook County. Eagle Point has a competent defense, but the Eagles' offense has little firepower. North Medford by 27.
South Medford at (1-7) at Mountain View (5-3) Tonight, 7:30, at Bend Radio Broacast, 6:30, KTMT (880-AM)
First-year South Medford coach Bill Singler said last week that he wished the football season could go on for a few more weeks. The Panthers may be 1-7, but they're a vastly improved squad from the start of the season, particularly on offense. Sophomore QB John McKay, forced into on-the-job training, has played impressive back-to-back games, completing 18 of 36 passes for 207 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions in that span. Mountain View, meanwhile, has won six of eight games on the field (the Cougars had to forfeit one of their wins to Hermiston) and is headed to the state playoffs from the Intermountain Conference. This could be a close one, but Cougars have the home field. Mountain View by 12.
Klamath Union (1-7) at Grants Pass (5-3) Tonight, 7:30, at Mel Ingram Field
Grants Pass is still licking its wounds following last week's 42-7 thumping at the hands of Roseburg, but the Cavemen should have no trouble drubbing a Klamath Union team that was somewhat competitive earlier this season but has been whacked by injuries in recent weeks. Klamath Union tailback Danny King leads the SOC in rushing with 1,110 yards and 13 TDs, but the Pelicans have little else clicking offensively. Grants Pass by 37.
Roseburg (5-2) at Willamette (5-3) Tonight, 7:30, at Eugene
Want to know of a team that no one wants to meet in the playoffs? Yep, it's Roseburg. The Indians received exactly one vote in the Class 4A state poll this week, but they've played at a very high level the past three weeks, clobbering South Medford, Crater and Grants Pass. What's the deal? Health. The Indians have gotten back Ryan Poe, an all-conference safety who is the team's emotional leader. Defensive tackle Byron Rinnaker, who was hindered by a pinched nerve earlier this season, is now playing like a man possessed. The Indians are also getting huge production out of QB Kevin Linderman, who has connected on 28 of 38 passes for 593 yards, eight TDs and only one interception the past three weeks. Linderman leads the SOC in passing efficiency. Willamette is headed for the playoffs out of the Midwestern League, but the Wolverines are shaky on defense: They coughed up 70 points to Churchill and 50 to Marshfield. Roseburg by 28.
Phoenix (2-6) at Rogue River (1-7) Tonight, 7, at Beck Field
This is Rogue River's final opportunity to win a game in the Skyline Conference, but the Chiefs don't have quite the horsepower to match the Pirates. Phoenix by 6.
Illinois Valley (6-2) at Hidden Valley (7-1) Tonight, 7, at Murphy
Hidden Valley has wrapped up the No. — state playoff berth from the Skyline Conference, and that makes this a dangerous game for the Mustangs. Illinois Valley can reach the playoffs if it defeats Hidden Valley and if Henley loses to Lakeview. Too many ifs. Hidden Valley by 15.
North Valley (2-6) at Mazama (5-3) Tonight, 7, at Klamath Falls
Perennial Skyline Conference title contender North Valley finds itself near the bottom of the league standings and won't be overly troubled when the regular season ends tonight. Mazama, in its first season at the Class 3A level, is headed to the state playoffs and wants to retain its momentum. Mazama by 27.
Lakeview (2-6) at Henley (6-2) Tonight, 7, at Klamath Falls
Henley needs a victory to ensure a trip to the state playoffs, and that's all the motivation the Hornets need. Henley RB Ryan Juhl is coming off a 222-yard, three-touchdown performance and won't slow down against a penetrable Lakeview defense. Henley by 27.
Bonanza (4-4) at Cascade Christian (2-6) Tonight, 7, at V.A. Domiciliary, White City
Cascade Christian is still sky-high after winning the Holy Bowl against St. Mary's last week. The Challengers' offense, stagnant all season long, amassed 318 yards in that game. But duplicating the effort against Bonanza, the No. 2 team from the Southern Cascade League, is another matter. Bonanza by 33.
St. Mary's (3-5) at Lost River (7-1) Tonight, 7
St. Mary's, coming off a debacle in which it gained only 101 yards and lost 36-6 to Cascade Christian, finds more tough going. The Raiders, 4-0 in the Southern Cascade League, look to finish the league campaign with a perfect record. They won 42-21 last week over a Chiloquin team that drubbed St. Mary's, 46-6. Lost River by 38.
ELSEWHERE IN SOUTHERN CASCADE LEAGUE -- Chiloquin by 44 over Gilchrist at Chiloquin.
Butte Falls (1-6) at Prospect (1-6) Tonight, 7, at Prospect
Two teams that were once dominant in eight-man football find themselves fighting for survival. Butte Falls finally notched its first win last week and triumphed in impressive fashion, 52-14 over North Lake. Loggers to make it two in a row. Butte Falls by 12.
ELSEWHERE IN THE SKYLINE A LEAGUE -- Paisley by 13 over North Lake at Paisley, Powers by 45 over Camas Valley at Camas Valley, Elkton by — over Days Creek at Elkton. Washington (6-3) at Oregon (6-2))
Saturday, 12:30 p.m., at Autzen Stadium, Eugene TV broadcast on KDRV (Ch. 12) Radio broadcast at noon on KCMX (580-AM)
This is once again the battle royal for the two teams, which have become bitter rivals. Oregon has won three of the last four from Washington. Ducks look like they might have the advantage on their home turf. But they will need to generate a running game to do so. Freshman Herman Ho-Ching is expected to be back after missing five weeks due to a knee strain. Oregon's defense got chewed up last Saturday in 38-3 loss at Arizona. The offense didn't play any better. But the Huskies also had a long day in falling to USC. Oregon by 10.
UCLA (8-0) at Oregon State (4-5) Saturday, 3:30 p.m. at Parker Stadium, Corvallis TV broadcast on Falcon-45 Radio broadcast at 2:30 p.m. on KTMT (880-AM)
Beavers have lost back-to-back one-point games to Washington (35-34) and to California (20-19). This week, they won't lose by one again. It'll be big. Bruins will take out frustrations on Beavers after they fell from No. 2 to No. — last week in the Associated Press poll after they won their 17th straight game in two years by beating Stanford. UCLA by 28.
ELSEWHERE IN THE PAC-10 CONFERENCE -- Arizona by 14 over Washington State at Arizona, USC by 10 over Stanford at Stanford, Arizona State by 6 over California at Arizona State.
Southern Oregon (3-5) at Humboldt State (3-6) Saturday, — p.m., at Arcata, Calif. Radio broadcast at 1:30 p.m. on KMED (1440-AM)
Raiders have lost three straight and desperately need a win after losing at Simon Fraser last Saturday. SOU lit up the scoreboard for 30 points in the fourth quarter before losing to Simon Fraser, 43-37, in triple overtime. Humboldt State has steadily improved in the second half of the season after a 0-5 start. Raiders need to establish control with their running game and keep Humboldt State's offense off the field. They proved last week they can play in the fourth quarter after sustaining three of their previous losses in the final period. Now, they need to play a full game and get a win. SOU by 10.
ELSEWHERE IN THE COLUMBIA FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION -- Western Washington by 7 over Central Washington at Western Washington, UC-Davis by 28 over Western Oregon at UC-Davis.