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FROM THE PRESS BOX: WEEK 13 PICKS — CAN TIOGA, WAVERLY BOTH ADVANCE TO STATE SEMIS? (2022-11-18)

Waverly and Tioga both won Section IV title Friday, with the Wolverines taking down nine-time reigning and two-time defending state champion Chenango Forks in the Class C title tilt, and the Tigers rolling over Delhi in the Class D championship game.

It’s the first time the two Valley teams have won Section IV crowns in the same year since 2015. They will make the trip to Cicero-North Syracuse this weekend to play the Section III champs in the New York State playoffs.

Both teams are also ranked No. 1 in the state at the same time in their respective classes for the first time ever. For Wolverines, it’s the first time they’ve ever been atop the rankings.

Tioga will take on fifth-ranked Dolgeville Friday at 5 p.m., while Waverly will square off with sixth-ranked General Brown (out of Dexter, N.Y.) Saturday at 6 p.m.

It was a perfect, albeit truncated, week of pigskin picking perfection for three of our four prognosticators as Little Red, Country Bob, and I all went 6-0, while The Mick, who missed out on both of his upset picks, was 4-2. On the season, I lead the pack at 94-12, while Little Red is 92-14, Country Bob is 85-21, and The Mick is 82-24.

So, what do our pigskins pickers see happening this weekend? Let’s take the plunge and see:

New York State Class D quarterfinals
Tioga (11-0) vs. Dolgeville (10-0):
The Tigers are coming off a 42-14 win over Delhi in the Section IV, Class D championship game, while the Blue Devils topped Beaver River, 44-22, in the Section III title game.

Tioga is 9-0 in the state quarterfinals since 2011, including wins over Dolgeville in 2014 (46-22), 2017 (46-16), and 2021 (50-12). The Tigers have won the nine quarter-final games by an average of 49.2 to 15.5.

Prediction: Both teams have been dominant this season. Tioga has outscored its opponents by 34.8 points per game, while Dolgeville has outscored its foes by 33.1 points per game. … I think this game may be a little closer than most of Tioga’s run-ins against Section III champs in the past, but I’ve thought that before, too. … TIOGA 34, DOLGEVILLE 19.
Little Red:
Tioga 52, Dolgeville 7; … The Mick: Tioga 21, Dolgeville 7; … Country Bob: Tioga 46, Dolgeville 6.

New York State Class C quarterfinals
Waverly (10-1) vs. General Brown (9-1):
The Wolverines are coming off a convincing 28-14 win over Chenango Forks in the Section IV, Class C title title, while the Lions blanked Holland Patent, 41-0, in the Section III championship game.

This game offers up a stark contrast in styles. Waverly uses the pass to set up the run, while General Brown will run the ball to set up an occasional big pass play.

Prediction: Waverly junior WB Joey Tomasso has been nearly unstoppable in recent weeks. I think that continues for at least one more week.  … WAVERLY 24, GENERAL BROWN 20.
Little Red:
Waverly 35, General Brown 14; … The Mick: Waverly 28, General Brown 14; … Country Bob: Waverly 28, General Brown 7.

New York State Class AA quarterfinals
Corning (6-3) at Cicero-North Syracuse (10-1):
The Hawks are coming off a 46-24 win over Elmira in the Section IV, Class A title game, while the NorthStars topped CBA, 34-20, in the Section III title tilt.

C-NS beat Corning, 20-16, last year in the state quarterfinals.

Prediction: Corning is just a bit too one-dimensional for this stage of the game. C-NS 22, CORNING 20.
Little Red:
C-NS 28, Corning 7; … The Mick: Corning 35, C-NS 21; … Country Bob: C-NS 35, Corning 24.

District 4, Class 3A Championship
Loyalsock (11-1) at Danville (11-0):
The Lancers are coming off a 69-42 win over Mifflinburg, while the Ironmen blanked Athens, 49-0.

Danville won the regular-season meeting in Week 4, 17-14.

Prediction: Danville is the best team I’ve seen this season. I don’t think it will be as close as the first time around against Loyalsock. … DANVILLE 27, LOYALSOCK 14.
Little Red:
Danville 21, Loyalsock 7; …  The Mick: Danville 24, Loyalsock 16;  … Country Bob: Danville 42, Loyalsock 6.

District 4, Class 2A Championship
Southern Columbia (9-3) at Mount Carmel (12-0):
The Tigers are coming off a 48-12 win at Troy, while the Red Tornadoes cruised past Hughesville, 48-13.

Mount Carmel won the regular-season meeting in Week 8, 35-21.

Prediction: Is Southern Columbia putting it together and peaking at the right time, or is Mount Carmel really the “it” team this year? I really want to pick Southern, but my head says it’s the Red Tornadoes’ year. … MOUNT CARMEL 34, SOUTHERN COLUMBIA 28.
Little Red:
Mount Carmel 28, Southern Columbia 7; …  The Mick: Mount Carmel 36, Southern Columbia 28; … Country Bob: Southern Columbia 35, Mount Carmel 20.

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