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Football Forecast

Crater (0-6) at Ashland (5-1) Tonight, 7:30, at Walter A. Phillips Field Radio Broadcast, KCMX (880-AM)

Crater is coming off its top performance of the season. The Comets nearly upset Grants Pass last week, but they?ll have their hands full tonight. Ashland still hasn't forgotten last season's 24-14 loss to Crater when the Grizzlies were pushed all over the field. Look for Ashland halfback Mac Contreras, the No. 4 rusher in the SOC with 532 yards and 5 TDs, to have a big night operating against a Crater defense that ranks last in the SOC in run defense at 227 yards per game.

— Ashland by 21.

North Medford (6-0) at Klamath Union (1-5) Tonight, 7:30, at Modoc Field Radio Broadcast, KMED (1440-AM)

This game should be decided before halftime as the No. 3-ranked Black Tornado has way too many weapons for the overmatched Pelicans. Klamath Union was able to muscle up to some of its opponents earlier this season but the Pelicans, hit with injuries and a suspension to RB Brad Mejia, have been outscored 94-6 the past two weeks. North Medford RB Phil Ouellette leads the SOC in rushing with 658 yards, and QB Kevin Foreman has run and passed for 973 yards and 20 scores.

— North Medford by 42.

Grants Pass (4-2) at Bend (5-1) Tonight, 7:30, at Bend Radio Broadcast, KAJO (1270-AM)

Bend looks like the best team in the Intermountain Conference. The Lava Bears are on a five-game win streak and edged a talented team from Newberry Park, Calif., 21-20, last Saturday. Bend's high-powered offense, led by RB Mike Rundle, figures to test a Grants Pass defense that ranks second in the SOC. The Cavemen are allowing just 200 yards and 10.5 points per game. Grants Pass will attempt to control the ball behind RB Brandon Hamada, the SOC's No. 2 rusher (627 yards, 12 TDs), but the Cavemen aren't likely to win a shootout.

— Bend by 7.

Roseburg (5-2) at South Medford (3-3) Tonight, 7:30, at Spiegelberg Stadium Radio Broadcast, KCMX (880-AM)

South Medford has new life following last week's 38-0 victory over Klamath Union but faces a much tougher assignment tonight. Panthers will mix in the running of Jimmie Maddox and the play-action passes of Boomer Marshall in an attempt to move the ball against Roseburg's rugged defense. Panther defense must contain Indians? veer-option offense led by RB Rod Cope and FB Matt Manser. Indians? offensive line has been hit hard by injuries, and if Panthers can avoid turnovers and penalties, they've got a shot at upset. But Roseburg is the more physical team.

— Roseburg by 14.

Eagle Point (1-5) at Churchill (5-1) Tonight, 7 o'clock, at Eugene

Eagle Point will be running into a buzz saw in this non-conference game. Churchill has crushed five straight opponents since a season-opening loss to Marshfield. Churchill RB Niles Mittasch leads the Midwestern League in rushing and is the spark that ignites the Lancers? double-wing offense. Eagle Point must put up four or five touchdowns to have a chance.

— Churchill by 28.

Phoenix (2-4) at Henley (6-0) Tonight, 7 o'clock, at Hill-O'Brien Stadium, Klamath Falls

Phoenix has scored 54 points in six games, hardly the amount of production necessary to compete for a playoff spot. On the other hand, No. — Henley has outscored its foes by an average of 42.2-8.5. The Hornets scored on a 66-yard run by Brian Kinsman last week in a 46-20 win over Mazama and also struck for a 65-yard pass from Frank Gauntz to Michael Nunes. Henley's penchant for the big play will continue. Phoenix's two wins have been against South Umpqua and Lakeview, schools with a combined 1-11 record.

— Henley by 36.

North Valley (4-2) at Rogue River (0-6) Tonight, 7:30, at Beck Field

It appears North Valley is back on track after dropping games to Illinois Valley and Mazama. Even with Henley on the horizon, the Knights can keep their playoff hopes going with a win in this one. Sophomore quarterback Tim Cunha showed he's coming of age in the Knights? 24-13 win at Hidden Valley. Rogue River picked up 107 yards rushing by Ryan Woodall in a 28-15 loss Lakeview. But the Chiefs hamstrung themselves with five turnovers, including a 45-yard interception return by Chad Longacre.

— North Valley by 19.

Illinois Valley (4-2) at Mazama (4-2) Tonight, 7 p.m. at Viking Stadium

The game of the week in the Skyline Conference with the winner almost assured of a playoff berth. Illinois Valley made the big plays against Phoenix last week, while Mazama surrendered them to Henley. Illinois Valley threw three times last week and completed two for 65 yards. Mazama was 3-of-16 for 16 yards and matters may be even worse this time because quarterback Brendan Quirke was ejected following a personal foul with two minutes to play against Henley and will miss the game.

— Illinois Valley by 2.

Hidden Valley (3-3) at Lakeview (1-5) Tonight, 7 o'clock

Lakeview got in the win column with a win over Rogue River. Hidden Valley isn't what it has been in recent years, but the Mustangs should have plenty to put this one away early. Hidden Valley lost three fumbles and threw an interception against North Valley. Look for the ?Stangs to cut down the turnovers this week.

— Hidden Valley by 15.

Bonanza (4-2) at Cascade Christian (3-3) Tonight, 7 p.m., V.A Domiciliary Stadium

This is a real make-or-break game for the Challengers. A win here opens the door to the playoffs. A loss means they?ll probably be on the outside looking in. Cascade is still looking for its first points against Bonanza after 25-0 and 17-0 losses the past two years. Still, the Antlers might be ripe for picking after getting outgained, 523-284, in a 26-0 loss to Lost River.

— Cascade Christian by 2.

ELSEWHERE IN THE SOUTHERN CASCADE LEAGUE -Mountain View JV by 6 over Lost River (4-2) in the Spud Bowl at Merrill; Gilchrist (3-3) by 6 over Chiloquin (2-4) at Gilchrist

— Prospect (3-3) at Days Creek (6-0) Today, 4 p.m.

Prospect has showed itself to be competitive with most Skyline A League teams, but Days Creek is another matter. Quarterback J.C. Hildebrand threw for 267 yards and four touchdowns in a 46-22 victory over Mapleton last week. That's the same Mapleton that spanked Prospect, 44-16, on Sept. 15. Prospect took a step backwards in losing to North Lake, 36-22, last week and this one may not go the distance.

Days Creek by 36.

Butte Falls (2-4) at Paisley (0-5) Today, — p.m.

Butte Falls outgained Elkton 392-249 last week as Nick Rodgers passed for 136 yards and Mark Lunsford rushed for 97 more. Paisley hasn't put up much resistance to anyone yet and don't expect more from the Broncos now.

Butte Falls by 20.

ELSEWHERE IN THE SKYLINE A LEAGUE -Powers by 46 over Elkton at Powers; North Lake by 26 over Camas Valley at Silver Lake.

— Arizona (5-1) at Oregon (5-1) Saturday, 7:20 p.m., at Autzen Stadium Radio Broadcast, KCMX (880-AM)

The road to first place in the Pac-10 Conference goes through Autzen Stadium as the No. 7-ranked Ducks clash with No. 21 Arizona. The Wildcats carry a four-game win streak into this game and maintained a share of the Pac-10 lead by outlasting Washington State 53-47 in triple overtime last Saturday. Quarterback Ortege Jenkins, who threw for 236 yards and three TDs in that game, leads the Wildcat offense. Oregon will counter with QB Joey Harrington, who had his best game as a Duck last Saturday when he passed for 382 yards and four touchdowns in Oregon's 28-17 victory over USC. Ducks have won 18 straight at Autzen.

— Oregon by 7.

Oregon State (5-1) at UCLA (4-2) Saturday, 3:30 p.m., at Los Angeles Radio Broadcast, KMED (1440-AM)

A victory by the Beavers would keep alive their hopes of going to the Rose Bowl for the first time in 36 years and would make them bowl eligible for the second year in a row. Oregon State RB Ken Simonton has 894 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns and is bidding to become the sixth player in Pac-10 Conference history to rush for 1,000 yards for three straight seasons. UCLA is coming off a 46-38 loss to California in triple overtime and will again be without starting tailback DeShaun Foster, who broke his right hand against Arizona State. However, the Bruins have a fine QB in Cory Paus and two excellent receivers in Brian Poli-Dixon and Freddie Mitchell, who leads the Pac-10 with 36 receptions for 768 yards and six TDs. A shootout could be in the works, and the streaking Beavers are up to the challenge.

— Oregon State by 3.

ELSEWHERE IN THE PAC-10 CONFERENCE ?

Washington by 17 over California at Seattle, Wash.; USC by 7 over Stanford at Palo Alto, Calif.; Arizona State by 2 over Washington State at Pullman, Wash.

— Southern Oregon (2-3) at Simon Fraser (1-5) Saturday, — p.m., at Burnaby, B.C. Radio Broadcast, KTMT (580-AM)

With its NAIA playoff hopes hanging by a thread, the 19th-ranked Raiders will try to take out their frustrations on a Simon Fraser squad that has lost five in a row. SOU lost star receiver Toby Taylor with a season-ending knee injury during last week's 21-13 loss to Western Oregon, and now must rely heavily on RB Dusty McGrorty. Simon Fraser, meanwhile, welcomes back its top receiver, Scott Robinson, who has been out with a leg injury. Six-hundred mile bus trip takes toll on Raiders.

— Simon Fraser by 3.