Before we get to this week’s predictions, here is your reading list for Friday morning:
• Here is some terrific reporting from my colleague Nancy Haggerty on a scary story. As part of lohud.com’s package on the dangers of heroin locally, Nancy has a piece on athletes who grow hooked on pain killers and eventually turn to heroin. If you read one thing this morning, make this it.
• But, if you read two things, here’s my story on local reacting to the death of New Jersey quarterback Evan Murray, who died from a lacerated spleen he suffered after taking a hit on the field last weekend. Murray’s death resonates with local football programs, most of which take precautions for traumatic injuries.
• And my Friday column today focuses on rivalries, which I believe are important and should never be marginalized. (And they have been, by the way.) No game proves the importance of rivalries more than tonight’s intradistrict tilt between Lakeland and Panas. If you still don’t believe rivalries are all-important, read the quote from Pearl River coach Mike Oliva, who, you should know for context, did not grow up anywhere close to Pearl River.
OK, here’s the coverage you can expect from us this weekend and where to find Twitter updates on the games:
Clarkstown North at New Rochelle at Flowers Park (formerly City Park), 6 p.m.: Josh Thomson (@lohudinsider)
Panas at Lakeland, 7 p.m.: Mike Zacchio (@zacchio_lohud)
Brewster at Somers, 7 p.m.: Mike Dougherty (@hoopsmbd)
Pearl River at Eastchester: Josh Thomson (@lohudinisder)
Link: Week 5 schedule
Josh Thomson’s 2015 predictions –
Picks of the Week: 19-1 (5-0 last week)
Overall: 111-33 (34-6 last week)
Link: Week 4 predictions
Picks of the Week
Friday, Sept. 25
New Rochelle 14, Clarkstown North 7:With terrible weather in the forecast, I expect a low-scoring game either way. New Rochelle is so strong traditionally against the run. I give the Huguenots a slight edge for having a little more diversity offensively.
Panas 17, Lakeland 14: I have a feeling this is the night Panas’ season begins. Do I think the Panthers are a Class A contender? Probably not. But with running back Joey DeLuca returning tonight from a broken leg, they will finally have their workhorse back. And what a better time for a team to get energized than playing its rival on the road.
Somers 21, Brewster 20: This will be a very interesting game. Clearly, after six tough quarters, Somers found something in the second half of last week’s win over Yorktown. The Tuskers will try and maintain whatever that was against a Brewster team riding its own high after last week’s wild 51-50 win over John Jay. The Bears shouldn’t expect Somers’ defense to be so friendly, but, still, this one will come down to the fourth quarter.
Saturday, Oct. 3
Eastchester 27, Pearl River 14: Both teams will enter Saturday oozing with confidence after 4-0 starts to the season. My question is whether or not Pearl River can stop Eastchester QB John Arcidiacono, who has been so productive in the air and on the ground this season. I think Eastchester .
Carmel 35, Scarsdale 27: I think this has the makings for a shootout. I’m not sure either team will key many stops, but I think Carmel is healthy and riding a great wave of momentum. The Rams have a real chance to finish the regular season unbeaten.
Friday, Oct. 2
Gorton 40, Yonkers 13
St. Dominic 27, Kennedy 19
John Jay-East Fishkill 21, North Rockland 7
Arlington 20, Mahopac 14
Mamaroneck 27, Clarkstown South 14
Fox Lane 26, Ramapo 14
Ossining 19, Mount Vernon 6
Suffern 13, Spring Valley 8
Rye 34, Lourdes 21 (game moved to 6 p.m. tonight)
Yorktown 41, Sleepy Hollow 23
Harrison 41, Pelham 6
Dobbs Ferry 34, Highland 6
Saturday, Oct. 3
Woodlands 33, Haldane 13
Riverdale 22, Tuckahoe 13
Peekskill 37, Riverside 20
Saunders 38, Roosevelt 13
Ketcham 20, White Plains 14
Horace Greeley 27, Port Chester 13
John Jay 35, Nyack 27
Beacon 26, Byram Hills 20
Nanuet 14, Irvington 0
Ardsley 21, Albertus Magnus 13
Croton-Harmon 20, Edgemont 6
Putnam Valley 34, Briarcliff 7
Yonkers Montessori 34, Palisade Prep 8
Long Island Lutheran 27, Hackley 21
Harvey 14, Dwight-Englewood 13
Tappan Zee 26, Hen Hud 13
Valhalla 33, Hastings 6
Pleasantville 20, Bronxville 7
Westlake 40, Blind Brook 7
St. Anthony’s 35, Iona Prep 13
Stepinac 31, Monsignor Farrell 14
Sunday, Oct. 4
Williston Northampton 28, Rye Country Day 14