Last week: 4-2
Watsonville at MVC: We all know what MVC can do. They have a great offense, a sneaky good defense, and they’re well coached. They’re still in the running for an MBL-P title (Alisal and Seaside, the last two remaining undefeated teams in the division, play tonight), and they should win this game. But Watsonville, despite what its record (3-4, 1-2) may suggest, isn’t a team you can overlook. The offense can score on just about anyone, which means they’re in games week in and week out. And they have weapons. Just look at QB Eddie Mares’ stats — 472 yards and 6 TDs rushing, 815 yards and 7 TDs passing. But MVC has more weapons, I think. Pick: MVC.
St. Francis at Santa Cruz: St. Francis surprised me (and Jim Seimas) last week by upending Harbor. What I like about the Sharks is their offense — they can run and pass. I expect the latter to be the go-to against Santa Cruz, and I expect Garrett Saucedo and Nate Ceballos to have big games. Pick: St. Francis.
Soquel at SLV: I like SLV, but I’m wondering how they’ll bounce back from last week’s loss to Scotts Valley. Unfortunately for them, Soquel isn’t the type of team one can easily bounce back from. The Cougars’ run defense wasn’t great last week, and tonight it will be going up against one of the better rushing attacks in Santa Cruz County, where RB Fabiano Hale can break two records — the single-season TD record and the single-season school record for rushing yards. Pick: Soquel.
Scotts Valley at Harbor: The Falcons had their break out game last week against SLV. You could tell they had been waiting to do that to someone all season. An interesting stat I pulled regarding their schedule — Scotts Valley’s previous seven opponents have a combined .703 winning percentage, while their remaining three have a combined .227 winning percentage. In other words, the Falcons were challenged this season with their slate — a tough nonconference schedule plus a frontloaded league schedule — and they are ready to take it to the rest of their opponents. Pick: Scotts Valley.
MPC at Cabrillo: If Hartnell is Cabrillo’s biggest rival, then MPC is probably it’s second biggest. This is a big game for the Seahawks (and the Lobos, too), but they need to get their offense going. They’ve been limited to 17 points in the last two games. The good news? Their defense has allowed just 16 points. I’m giving a slight edge to the home team. Pick: Cabrillo.