My goal of making it to 80 percent took a little hit as I posted a 13-6 (68 percent) record last week. With the playoffs starting next week, my overall record is 134-40, which leaves me at 77 percent. All games are Friday.
NORTHERN INDIANA CONFERENCE
Clay (0-8, 0-4 NIC) at Elkhart Central (3-5, 1-3 NIC): The Blazers rolled to a 44-14 victory over Elkhart Central last year. With their 69-0 loss to Riley, the Colonials have now been outscored 223-12 over their last four contests. Jackson Wiltfong tossed for 107 yards in Elkhart Central’s 47-3 loss to Penn. Matt’s pick: Elkhart Central 40, Clay 8.
Culver Academy (7-1) at Bremen (4-4): The Eagles blanked Bremen, 20-0, a season ago. Tommy Polhamus ran for 104 yards and one score for Culver Academy in a 47-14 win over Saint Joseph. Ryan Caldwell threw for 133 yards and a touchdown in the Lions’ 28-13 loss to Jimtown. Matt’s pick: Culver Academy 30, Bremen 26.
Jimtown (4-4, 4-1 NIC) at New Prairie (7-1, 5-0 NIC): The Cougars clawed past Jimtown, 28-6, last season. Nic Fann caught three passes for 48 yards with a score for the Jimmies against Bremen. Austin Weiland accounted for a touchdown run in New Prairie’s 49-0 blanking of Glenn. Matt’s pick: New Prairie 43, Jimtown 14.
Penn (7-1, 4-0 NIC) at Mishawaka (5-3, 3-1 NIC): The Kingsmen hung on for a 21-14 win against Mishawaka a year ago. Camryn Szynski returned an interception 23 yards for a score for Penn against Elkhart Central. Isaiah Evans got the Cavemen on the scoreboard in a 38-14 win over Marian with a six-yard scamper. Matt’s pick: Penn 31, Mishawaka 13.
Riley (5-3, 3-2 NIC) at Glenn (3-5, 1-4 NIC): The Wildcats roared to a 41-6 win over Glenn in 2016. James Jackson ran for 197 yards and five touchdowns and threw for 126 yards and two scores for Riley against Clay. Graysen Fansler had 20 yards rushing for the Falcons against New Prairie. Matt’s pick: Riley 42, Glenn 10.
Saint Joseph (3-5, 3-1 NIC) at Adams (2-6, 1-3 NIC) (School Field): The Eagles were a 33-23 winner over Saint Joe in their last meeting. Ashton Ruszkowski tossed a pair of touchdown passes for the Indians against Culver Academy Eric Williams passed for 130 yards and two scores and ran for 101 yards and a touchdown in Adams’ 26-21 win over Washington. Matt’s pick: Saint Joseph 33, Adams 27.
Washington (3-5, 1-4 NIC) at Marian (4-4, 2-3 NIC): The Knights claimed the NIC South crown last season with a 35-13 win over Washington. Anthony Coleman scampered 52 yards for a touchdown for the Panthers against Adams. Michael Hemmingway hauled in a 19-yard pass for a score in Marian’s setback to Mishawaka. Matt’s pick: Marian 24, Washington 12.
NORTHERN LAKES CONFERENCE
Northridge (8-0, 6-0 NLC) at Elkhart Memorial (1-7, 0-6 NLC): The Raiders charged past Elkhart Memorial, 22-8, a year ago. Conner Graber rambled for 84 yards and two touchdowns as Northridge earned a share of its first NLC crown with a 28-21 win over Concord. Nolan Grose tallied 95 yards rushing and a touchdown in the Chargers’ 7-6 loss at Wawasee. Matt’s pick: Northridge 41, Elkhart Memorial 11.
Plymouth (6-2, 4-2 NLC) at NorthWood (5-3, 3-3 NLC): The Panthers pounced past Plymouth, 43-12, last season. Cole Filson threw a touchdown pass and ran for a pair of scores in the Rockies’ 41-21 win over Goshen. Brayton Yoder had 66 yards on the ground and two touchdowns in NorthWood’s 31-28 loss at Warsaw. Matt’s pick: NorthWood 34, Plymouth 32.
Wawasee (2-6, 1-5 NLC) at Goshen (1-7, 1-5 NLC): The Warriors suffered a 41-34 loss to Goshen a season ago. Elisha Tipping recorded eight tackles for Wawasee against Elkhart Memorial. Noah Shively racked up 11 tackles for the RedHawks against Plymouth. Matt’s pick: Goshen 22, Wawasee 18.
Warsaw (5-3, 4-2 NLC) at Concord (7-1, 5-1 NLC): The Minutemen earned a 45-38 win at Warsaw last year. Bryce Garner ran for a seven-yard touchdown in the Tigers’ upset of NorthWood. Dominick DeBroka scampered 19 yards for a score in Concord’s setback to Northridge. Matt’s pick: Concord 35, Warsaw 15.
HOOSIER NORTH CONFERENCE
Culver (5-3, 3-3 HNC) at LaVille (4-4, 3-3 HNC): The Lancers posted a pair of victories against Culver in 2016 by scores of 33-7 and 42-14. Ryan Tompos managed just 33 total yards in the Cavaliers’ 55-7 loss to Pioneer. Robby Pope ran for 21 yards and a touchdown in LaVille’s 33-0 win over North Judson. Matt’s pick: LaVille 23, Culver 22.
Knox (7-1, 5-1 HNC) at Caston (1-7, 0-6 HNC): The Redskins claimed a 37-6 win over Caston a year ago. Kooper Broeker ran for two scores and threw for a third tally in Knox’s 35-7 win at Triton. Brandon Kinser threw for 93 yards and a touchdown in the Comets’ 47-8 loss at Winamac. Matt’s pick: Knox 45, Caston 9.
North Judson (2-6, 1-5 HNC) at Pioneer (8-0, 6-0 HNC): The Panthers downed North Judson twice last year by scores of 48-0 and 47-7. Caden Peretti threw for 98 yards in the Bluejays’ loss to LaVille. Derek Whiteman rushed for 16 yards and a score for Pioneer against Culver. Matt’s pick: Pioneer 50, North Judson 7.
Triton (5-3, 4-2 HNC) at Winamac (4-4, 2-4 HNC): The Trojans are looking to avenge a 34-7 loss to Winamac a season ago. Drew Stichter recorded seven tackles for Triton against Knox. Ethan Rogers scampered for 219 yards and three touchdowns for Winamac against Caston. Matt’s pick: Winamac 38, Triton 36.
Chesterton (3-5, 1-5 DAC) at Merrillville (1-7, 1-5 DAC): The Pirates marched past Chesterton, 34-13, last season. Andrew Zimmerman had 56 yards on the ground for the Trojans in a 21-7 loss to Crown Point. Justin Rhodes rushed for 151 yards and a score for Merrillville in its 27-23 loss to Lake Central. Matt’s pick: Chesterton 25, Merrillville 14.
Lake Central (2-6, 1-5 DAC) at Valparaiso (8-1, 5-1 DAC): The Indians edged Valparaiso, 21-20, a season ago. Josh Williams had the game-winning two-yard touchdown run in Lake Central’s win over Merrillville. Reece Staples came up with seven tackles for the Vikings in their 23-20 win at Portage. Matt’s pick: Valparaiso 37, Lake Central 12.
Michigan City (5-3, 4-2 DAC) at Crown Point (5-3, 4-2 DAC): The Bulldogs downed Michigan City, 42-21, in their last meeting. Zennon Wilhelm caught five passes for 124 yards and two scores in the Wolves’ 58-56 loss at LaPorte. Ben Fridrich kicked a pair of field goals and caught an 18-yard touchdown pass for Crown Point against Chesterton. Matt’s pick: Crown Point 29, Michigan City 28.
Portage (4-4, 4-2 DAC) at LaPorte (5-3, 4-2 DAC): The Indians recorded a 31-18 victory over LaPorte a year ago. Jordan Warner racked up 15 tackles for Portage against Valparaiso. Noah Perez tallied nine tackles for the Slicers against Michigan City. Matt’s pick: LaPorte 39, Portage 34.