Schoolboy pick of week: Ringgold
TribLIVE Sports Videos
At the midway point of the football season, Ringgold was 3-1 and sitting pretty good in the Big Nine Conference standings.
Then, unbeaten West Mifflin came in and blitzed the Rams, 35-7, and after that, star running back Demetrius Louis suffered nagging hamstring and groin injuries that kept him on the sidelines far more than on the field.
Last week, starting quarterback Nico Law was injured in a 14-7 loss to Highlands.
The result has been three losses in the last four games and a two-game losing streak going into tonight's conference finale with visiting Trinity (4-4, 4-3).
It's obvious that the Rams are a different team without Louis in the backfield and the versatile Law running the offense.
However, both players are expected to be healthy and ready to go against Trinity in a game that has great meaning for the playoffs.
Ram coach Matt Humbert was emphatic that he did not want to see his team go into the playoffs next week riding a three-game losing skid. Plus, winning and finishing fourth in the conference will mean a slightly better draw in the playoffs than losing and finishing fifth.
I look for Ringgold to come out an play inspired football in an attempt to regain some momentum going into the postseason.
Of course, even with Louis and Law in the backfield, Ringgold's defense will also have to stand tall against an effective, if not spectacular, Hiller ground game.
How similar are the teams?
On the season, the Rams average 24.3 ppg compared to Trinity's 22.8. Defensively, Ringgold gives up 21.3 ppg to the Hillers' 21.9.
It's a game that could either way, but with a healthy Louis and Law, the Rams have the edge.
The pick: Ringgold, 27-21.
Best of the rest
• BV Area at Albert Gallatin. The Leps will win easily, even though their minds will be on the Ringgold-Trinity game. BVA, 34-7.
• Monessen at Carlynton. The Greyhounds win and they will be 8-1 in the rugged Black Hills Conference. Who saw that coming? Monessen, 44-14.
• Brownsville at Charleroi. Two teams' agonizing seasons coming to an end with each wanting badly to get a win. The Cougars have more weapons to battle with. Charleroi, 28-14.
• California at Brentwood. Unlike Monessen, the Trojans were not happy to be moved out of the Tri-County South. This game will be another reason why. Brentwood, 35-14.
• Mapletown at Frazier. After a slow start, the Commodores are rolling now. Frazier, 28-7.
• Greensburg Salem at Elizabeth Forward. The Warriors will win and take a 6-3 record into the playoffs. Wow. EF, 34-10.
• Yough at Southmoreland. Cougars will send their seniors off with a victory. Yough, 28-24.
• Avella at Bentworth. Things sure went wrong for the Eagles in a big way the last three weeks. This should soften the blow a little. Avella, 27-22.
Last week: 8-1. Season record: 54-13.
Jeff Oliver is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2666 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates notebook: Phillies’ Burnett not demanding trade
- Chrysler recalls up to 792K Jeep SUVs for ignition switch defect
- Kennedy man shot in home, medical examiner’s office says
- NFL notebook: Dungy clarifies Sam comments
- Earnings mood turns more upbeat, gives stock market a boost
- Paterno son, another ex-football assistant coach suing PSU
- St. Pius to host church festival on Sunday
- Severino, Pittsburgh chefs are collaborating at Cure’ated Dinners series
- Allegheny County warns of uptick in Lyme disease cases
- Lyft, Uber can’t dodge the insurance question
- High school notebook: Hempfield basketball coach Marino resigns