The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

October 31, 2013

FEARLESS PREDICTIONS: Week 10

By Jonathan Deal
jonathan@athensnews-courier.com

— Friday, Nov. 1

All games at 7 p.m.

GAME OF THE WEEK

West Limestone (6-3, 4-3) at Ardmore (6-3, 4-3)

Cooper Field, Ardmore

Why it’s important: These Limestone County rivals have already qualified for the playoffs in Alabama’s 4A classification. All that’s left are bragging rights for the county’s best 4A school and probably third best team. While keeping players healthy for the playoffs is important, the winner of this game would complete a clean sweep of all the Limestone County teams on its schedule. Ardmore, enjoying its best season since 2006, would love to snap a six-game losing streak to West.

Preview: West Limestone lost in the final seconds to Haleyville last week, snapping a five-game winning streak for the Wildcats. The loss put a damper on what has been an excellent October. The Wildcats went 3-1 over the past month, buoyed by the running back trio of Dillon Miller, Tucker McCormick and Logan Pugh.

After starting the season 5-0, Ardmore has dropped three of its last four games including a 48-32 loss at D.A.R. last week. Ardmore’s offense has remained consistent this season, averaging 31 points per game, but the Tigers have allowed an average of 46 points per game in their three losses.

Series history: West Limestone leads 33-26 with one tie.

Last year: West Limestone won 28-13.

News Courier prediction: West Limestone 28, Ardmore 22

Sparkman (1-8, 0-7) at Athens (6-3, 4-3)

Golden Eagle Stadium, Athens

Preview: Athens is gunning for its seventh win of the season when the Golden Eagles host a Sparkman team that has lost four straight. Since defeating Grissom 48-0 in late September, the Senators have been blown out in their last three games. In losses to Bob Jones, Decatur and Florence, Sparkman gave up an average of 56 points per game. Florence led 62-0 at halftime last week.

Against similar competition, Athens has allowed 67 points total in its last five games. The Golden Eagle defense has been one of the best in North Alabama this season, giving up 15 points each game.

Series history: Athens leads 16-7.

Last year: Athens won 33-0.

News Courier prediction: Athens 35, Sparkman 14



Wilson (4-5, 4-3) at Elkmont (4-5, 3-4)

Boss Hill Stadium, Elkmont

Preview: Two weeks ago, Elkmont controlled its destiny in 3A Region 8. Two consecutive losses have knocked the Red Devils out of playoff contention, but a win over Wilson would finish the season on a high note.

Wilson is a hard team to figure. After being eliminated from playoff contention with back-to-back losses to West Limestone and Central in early October, the Warriors upset Brooks last week to hand the region title to Haleyville. Wilson has held its opponents to exactly seven points in its four wins this season.

Series history: The series is tied 2-2.

Last year: Wilson won last year 63-20.

News Courier prediction: Wilson 21, Elkmont 10

Auburn (8-1, 6-1) at East Limestone (2-7, 1-6)

East Limestone Stadium, Capshaw

Preview: The schedule gets no easier for East Limestone with 6A No. 2 Auburn coming to town Friday. The Indians have dropped four in a row, including a close home loss to West Point last week.

Auburn, like East, has played a brutal schedule in a region where four teams have been ranked in 6A at one point in the season. With a handful of Division 1 prospects, Auburn is one of the best teams in Alabama.

The good news for East Limestone is the players have nothing to lose. The seniors can play their final game against some of the best talent in the 2014 class.

Series history: Auburn leads 1-0.

Last year: Auburn won 49-14.

News Courier prediction: Auburn 42, East Limestone 10



John Paul II Catholic (2-6, 2-5) at Clements (1-8, 1-6)

M.T. Newman Stadium, Clements

Preview: John Paul II Catholic ended a miserable region schedule for North Jackson last week with an 18-13 win in what is probably the biggest victory in the program’s short history.

Clements has taken one too many injuries this season and lost its last seven games. Clements win against Catholic in the final game last season was the Colts only win of the year.

Series history: Clements leads 1-0.

Last year: Clements won 28-Friday, Nov. 1

All games at 7 p.m.

GAME OF THE WEEK

West Limestone (6-3, 4-3) at Ardmore (6-3, 4-3)

Cooper Field, Ardmore

Why it’s important: These Limestone County rivals have already qualified for the playoffs in Alabama’s 4A classification. All that’s left are bragging rights for the county’s best 4A school and probably third best team. While keeping players healthy for the playoffs is important, the winner of this game would complete a clean sweep of all the Limestone County teams on its schedule. Ardmore, enjoying its best season since 2006, would love to snap a six-game losing streak to West.

Preview: West Limestone lost in the final seconds to Haleyville last week, snapping a five-game winning streak for the Wildcats. The loss put a damper on what has been an excellent October. The Wildcats went 3-1 over the past month, buoyed by the running back trio of Dillon Miller, Tucker McCormick and Logan Pugh.

After starting the season 5-0, Ardmore has dropped three of its last four games including a 48-32 loss at D.A.R. last week. Ardmore’s offense has remained consistent this season, averaging 31 points per game, but the Tigers have allowed an average of 46 points per game in their three losses.

Series history: West Limestone leads 33-26 with one tie.

Last year: West Limestone won 28-13.

News Courier prediction: West Limestone 28, Ardmore 22

Sparkman (1-8, 0-7) at Athens (6-3, 4-3)

Golden Eagle Stadium, Athens

Preview: Athens is gunning for its seventh win of the season when the Golden Eagles host a Sparkman team that has lost four straight. Since defeating Grissom 48-0 in late September, the Senators have been blown out in their last three games. In losses to Bob Jones, Decatur and Florence, Sparkman gave up an average of 56 points per game. Florence led 62-0 at halftime last week.

Against similar competition, Athens has allowed 67 points total in its last five games. The Golden Eagle defense has been one of the best in North Alabama this season, giving up 15 points each game.

Series history: Athens leads 16-7.

Last year: Athens won 33-0.

News Courier prediction: Athens 35, Sparkman 14



Wilson (4-5, 4-3) at Elkmont (4-5, 3-4)

Boss Hill Stadium, Elkmont

Preview: Two weeks ago, Elkmont controlled its destiny in 3A Region 8. Two consecutive losses have knocked the Red Devils out of playoff contention, but a win over Wilson would finish the season on a high note.

Wilson is a hard team to figure. After being eliminated from playoff contention with back-to-back losses to West Limestone and Central in early October, the Warriors upset Brooks last week to hand the region title to Haleyville. Wilson has held its opponents to exactly seven points in its four wins this season.

Series history: The series is tied 2-2.

Last year: Wilson won last year 63-20.

News Courier prediction: Wilson 21, Elkmont 10

Auburn (8-1, 6-1) at East Limestone (2-7, 1-6)

East Limestone Stadium, Capshaw

Preview: The schedule gets no easier for East Limestone with 6A No. 2 Auburn coming to town Friday. The Indians have dropped four in a row, including a close home loss to West Point last week.

Auburn, like East, has played a brutal schedule in a region where four teams have been ranked in 6A at one point in the season. With a handful of Division 1 prospects, Auburn is one of the best teams in Alabama.

The good news for East Limestone is the players have nothing to lose. The seniors can play their final game against some of the best talent in the 2014 class.

Series history: Auburn leads 1-0.

Last year: Auburn won 49-14.

News Courier prediction: Auburn 42, East Limestone 10



John Paul II Catholic (2-6, 2-5) at Clements (1-8, 1-6)

M.T. Newman Stadium, Clements

Preview: John Paul II Catholic ended a miserable region schedule for North Jackson last week with an 18-13 win in what is probably the biggest victory in the program’s short history.

Clements has taken one too many injuries this season and lost its last seven games. Clements win against Catholic in the final game last season was the Colts only win of the year.

Series history: Clements leads 1-0.

Last year: Clements won 28-7.

News Courier prediction: Catholic 27, Clements 12



News Courier prediction: Catholic 27, Clements 12