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Rivals get The Birdie chirping

| Thursday, Oct. 3, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

The Birdie is hearing a buzz coming from Armstrong County. It's Kittanning-Ford City week and the big rivalry game has him telling tales about his friendly foes in the prognosticating business.

“Yes, even I, the keeper of the crystal ball, have rivals,” Birdie said. “They want to pigeon-walk like me, go out on a limb like I do and pick winners like me. Yet so many of the so-called experts just line up and fail.”

The Birdie has plenty of stories, some true, others too outlandish to even attempt to fact-check.

Like Burrell and Valley, Kittanning and Ford City have been known to pull pranks on one another. The Birdie is no stranger to that noise. Once the class clown in high school, he later become known as a press-box prankster.

“One time, I pulled the plug on HS Picks' laptop during a game and then hid,” he said. “And, I had the announcer call out the Leader's license plate and say his car was towed. It wasn't. Tee hee hee.”

The Birdie wants Kittanning and Ford City to keep it clean because, “Before you know it, that merger will happen and you'll have to be best friends. Still don't know what a Riverhawk is, and I'm a bird.”

This week's game shall be known at the Riverhawk Bowl.

And a quick update: The Birdie's award for top football student section went to ... Kiski Area. He also considered Valley and Kittanning.

Friday

Apollo-Ridge (3-2, 2-2) at Springdale (2-3, 2-2)

Springdale has a playoff streak to think about, but Apollo-Ridge is trying to gets its own streak going again.

Apollo-Ridge, 28-7

Burrell (2-3, 1-3) at Freeport (1-4, 1-4)

Far from the draw it was last year, this one goes to Burrell.

Burrell, 21-12

Summit Academy (2-3, 2-2) at Deer Lakes (0-5, 0-4)

Deer Lakes has a chance at home, but will have to slow down the Knights.

Summit Academy, 28-20

Kittanning (5-0, 4-0) at Ford City (2-3, 1-3)

One of the top rivalries in the state will come down to defense — and an upset. Birdie is calling fair catch so be nice Kittanning.

Ford City, 14-13

North Hills (3-2, 2-1) at Fox Chapel (1-4, 1-3)

North Hills will deny the Foxes two in a row.

North Hills, 24-13

Highlands (4-1, 4-1) at Derry (0-5, 0-4)

The Golden Rams will rekindle that rushing attack.

Highlands, 26-7

Kiski Area (2-3, 2-2) at Norwin (1-4, 1-4)

If playoffs are in Kiski Area's future, it has to take care of business.

Kiski Area, 20-13

Knoch (3-2, 2-2) at Franklin Regional (4-1, 3-1)

Knoch's running game has been strong, but the Panthers can move the ball, too.

Franklin Regional, 28-20

Leechburg (0-5, 0-4) at Northgate (1-4, 1-3)

Leechburg will snap its 16-game road losing streak.

Leechburg, 15-8

Plum (0-5, 0-5) at Peters Township (2-3, 1-3)

Plum will put up a fight early.

Peters Township, 19-9

Riverview (1-4) at Shenango (1-4)

Birdie calls Shenango-ins.

Shenango, 22-15

Yough (2-3) at Valley (4-1)

Yough has shown some offensive punch, but Valley has been good at home.

Valley, 28-14

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