Week 9 Picks.tiff

Claremore senior Dylan Kedzior (3) stiff arms a Skiatook defender as he is pushed out-of-bounds during last week’s District 5A-4 game at Lantow Field. The Zebras are looking at a must-win situation against rival Pryor tonight.

The regular season is nearing its end, and opportunities to secure a playoff spot are becoming limited.

With only two weeks until the postseason, one Rogers County team is looking to solidify its slot in the district standings, while others are either fighting to keep their seasons alive or are already eliminated from contention.

Here are the need-to-knows and score predictions for every game in the area tonight.

Last week’s record: 7-1 (87.5 percent)

Overall record: 55-13 (81 percent)

1. Pryor (5-3, 3-2) at Claremore (4-4, 3-2)

Both teams are coming off losses, and the winner of this one will have the upper hand at making the playoffs.

The Tigers looked like a district-title contender early on, but consecutive blowout losses to Tahlequah (58-13) and Collinsville (41-14) have them on the brink of elimination.

Meanwhile, the Zebras muddied their chances with a 34-27 loss to Skiatook, creating a three-way tie for third and fourth in District 5A-4.

The loser will likely be on the outside looking in come playoff time. That makes this rivalry matchup even more interesting.

Prediction: Claremore 38, Pryor 34

2. Inola (5-3, 3-2) at Vinita (3-5, 2-3)

This is a must-win situation for Inola.

The top three spots in District 3A-4 are all but decided, meaning either the Longhorns or Vinita will clinch the fourth seed with a win.

With Cascia Hall on deck in the regular-season finale, Inola can’t afford to slip up here.

Results against common opponents are eerily similar, so this one could be a toss up in which the last team with the ball garners the victory.

Both teams endured double-digit defeats last week, so it’ll be interesting to see which can right the ship the quickest.

Prediction: Inola 40, Vinita 34

3. Oologah (4-4, 2-3) at Grove (3-5, 2-3)

Oologah’s fall from grace is perplexing.

After defeating two Class 5A playoff contenders in Collinsville and Skiatook to open the season, the Mustangs dropped four of their next six.

Now they find themselves in danger of missing the playoffs.

A win sets up a winner-takes-all matchup against Rogers County rival Catoosa next week for the final District 4A-3 playoff spot.

A loss all but ends Oologah’s season short of the postseason for the first time since 2011.

Grove is coming off a 20-14 upset win over Cleveland, the same team that beat the Mustangs, 34-31, on Sept. 27.

Prediction: Oologah 35, Grove 17

4. Class 4A No. 4 Bristow (7-1, 5-0) at Catoosa (3-5, 3-2)

There is good news and bad news for Catoosa regarding this matchup.

The good news is the Indians don’t have to win this game to keep their playoff hopes alive. Given the fact Bristow is one of the hottest teams in Class 4A, that is relieving information.

In losing, though, Catoosa needs Oologah to defeat Grove and then must best the Mustangs next week to secure a spot.

If Grove wins that matchup and Catoosa beats Oologah, there would likely be a three-way tie with Cleveland for the final two spots in District 4A-3, which would be decided by district points.

The Indians are in good standing in that department for now, but things could easily change.

Regardless, District 4A-3 is shaping up for a thrilling conclusion.

Prediction: Bristow 41, Catoosa 6

5. Locust Grove (2-6, 1-4) at Verdigris (6-2, 4-1)

Verdigris should roll, but the games are played for a reason.

Given their tiebreaker over Inola and Vinita, the Cardinals’ playoff seed likely wouldn’t change even if they were upset.

Verdigris is averaging nearly 50 points per game in its four-game winning streak, and Locust Grove doesn’t look like a viable candidate to slow the Cardinals down.

Prediction: Verdigris 49, Locust Grove 21

6. South Coffeyville (3-5, 0-3) at Foyil (2-6, 0-3)

This matchup will decide the last-place finisher in District B-8.

Both teams enter on a four-game losing streak having been outscored by a combined 386-50. All 50 of those points belong to Foyil.

South Coffeyville hasn’t scored since a 51-16 win over Olive on Sept. 27.

The Panthers aren’t going back to the playoffs this season, but they’ll at least have a chance to pick up another win before 2019 comes to a close.

Prediction: Foyil 30, South Coffeyville 24

7. Chelsea (1-7, 0-5) at Chouteau-Mazie (1-7, 0-5)

Chelsea is in the same boat as Foyil.

The Green Dragons were eliminated from playoff contention long ago, but they can salvage what is left of the season and avoid finishing last in District 2A-4 by getting past Chouteau-Mazie.

Chelsea has been outscored 90-0 in its last three games, and though the Wildcats have the same record, they’ve faired just a tad better against the same competition.

For example, Chelsea lost to Wyandotte and Salina by a total of 52-13, while Chouteau-Mazie beat Salina, 14-0, and lost to Wyandotte, 28-20.

Prediction: Choteau-Mazie 28, Chelsea 8

8. Sequoyah (0-8, 0-5) at Cascia Hall (5-3, 4-1)

Sequoyah seems to be at an all-time low heading into the final two weeks.

The Eagles are on a 19-game losing streak, and Cascia Hall appears to be next in line to add to the unprecedented number.

The Commandos average about 26.4 points per game, while Sequoyah has yet to eclipse 14 points in a game.

Prediction: Cascia Hall 42, Sequoyah 7

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