Predictions for Day Five of the 2014 Class 2 District 7 Tournament

So players think they have pressure coming into this afternoon’s championship games? I’ve got a perfect record in the prediction game on the line. Now that’s pressure.

Haha, kidding of course.

Remember when I said to arrive early for Thursday’s boys semifinal games? Yeah, you might want to get to Harrisburg before noon. Otherwise, there’s a good chance you’ll have to commute to the game by shuttle bus.

Okay, no delaying this any longer. Time to see if I have it in me to go a perfect 12-for-12 in predicting games this week. Who ya got? (And remember, I’m not playing favorites here. I’m just doing all of this for fun.)

No. 2 Harrisburg (G) vs. No. 1 New Franklin (1 p.m. tip-off): For the past two years, I’ve stayed away from guessing what team is going to win a district championship before the tournament even begins. Today’s game is a reason why. Both of these teams were expected to be in this game, but this week wasn’t a piece of cake for them. First things first, let’s throw out their first meeting, a 38-30 New Franklin win on Dec. 7 in the Glasgow Tournament championship game. Harrisburg won the first three quarters of that game, but New Franklin dominated the all-important fourth quarter. That was a 50/50 game, being played on a neutral court. Today’s game isn’t, and home-court advantage is going to be a huge bonus for Harrisburg today. I really have no clue which team will win today, but I haven’t picked an upset for a few days. Eh, why not? Prediction: Harrisburg 46, New Franklin 42.

No. 2 Tolton Catholic (B) vs. No. 1 Harrisburg (2:45 p.m. tip-off): There may be standing-room only for this game, which is a perfect conclusion to the week I call the “District of Doom.” Tolton has impressed all week, so it would be easy to pick the Trailblazers to win. I mean, Michael Porter Jr. has been every bit of good that I’ve heard from earlier this year, and with a balanced attack that includes Josh Boyer and Brennan Church (among others), it’s pretty easy to see why Tolton is a well-oiled machine. Yeah, I know, all I’ve been doing is talking up Tolton, but hear me out. From the games I’ve seen this season, Harrisburg’s pressure changes an opponent. Many teams aren’t capable of playing Tolton with full-court defense, but Harrisburg can. The Bulldogs showed it earlier this season, beating Tolton 61-59, at Tolton. And from what I remember, Harrisburg actually had something like an 8-point lead with a minute to play, so the Trailblazers fought to the finish to make it a close game. And let’s not forget the home-court factor. Harrisburg needs one more district championship to fill the last spot in the banner hanging on the east side of the gym, and it’s starting to get on Steve Combs’ nerves. I think the “Coach of the Decade” will get to fill the last spot with a “14″ after today. Prediction: Harrisburg 70, Tolton Catholic 67.

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Friday’s district tournament results

A little late on posting this, but better late than never.

Class 2 District 7 @ Harrisburg

No games played Friday

Class 1 District 9 @ GPasg0w

No games played Friday

Class 2 District 6 @ Schuyler County

No games played Friday

Class 2 District 5 @ Clopton

No games played Friday

Class 1 District 8 @ NW Hughesville

No games played Friday

Class 1 District 10 @ Madison

  • (1) Marion County (G) 57, (2) Atlanta 27
  • (1) Marion County (B) 49, (3) North Shelby 41

Class 1 District 12 @ Tina-Avalon

  • (1) Norborne (G) 56, (3) Keytesville 38
  • (3) Tina-Avalon (B) 71, (1) Hale/Bosworth 62
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Thursday’s district tournament results

All right, small-school district tournament folks. Quarterfinals and semifinals are all completed. It’s on to the championship games, which will be either Friday or Saturday, depending on the district. Here are tonight’s results.

Class 2 District 7 @ Harrisburg

  • (1) Harrisburg (B) 69, (5) New Franklin 62
  • (2) Tolton Catholic (B) 80, (3) Salisbury 69

Class 1 District 9 @ Glasgow

  • (2) Community (G) 57, (3) Prairie Home 38
  • (2) Community (B) 68, (3) Jamestown 60

Class 2 District 6 @ Schuyler County

  • (2) Marceline (G) 51, (3) Cairo 43
  • (1) Cairo (B) 77, (4) Putnam County 45
  • (1) Knox County (G) 44, (4) Scotland County 32
  • (3) Knox County (B) 57, (2) Scotland County 55

Class 2 District 5 @ Clopton

  • (1) Canton (B) 70, (5) Silex 25
  • (2) Louisiana (B) 51, (3) Clopton 46

Class 1 District 8 @ NW Hughesville

  • (1) Pilot Grove (B) 75, (4) NW Hughesville 46
  • (2) Leeton (B) 58, (6) Kingsville 17

Class 1 District 10 @ Madison

No games played Thursday

Class 1 District 12 @ Tina-Avalon

No games played Thursday

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Predictions for Day Four of the 2014 Class 2 District 7 Tournament

Somehow, some way, I went 2-for-2 in last night’s picks. And as I said yesterday, I could have very easily gone 0-for-2.

We all knew tonight in the boys semifinal games that we were going to see some great basketball, but Wednesday’s girls games set the bar pretty darn high. So no pressure tonight, boys.

All right, I’m 8-for-8 with four games to go. Who ya go tonight? Here are my picks.

No. 5 New Franklin (B) vs. No. 1 Harrisburg (6 p.m. tip-off): New Franklin has the only “upset” so far in this district tournament, boys or girls, and finally snapped an 18-game losing streak to Sturgeon. We might have to go back at least a decade since the last time New Franklin beat Harrisburg though. Anyway, back to this season. These two teams met on Dec. 5 in the semifinals of the Glasgow Tournament, with Harrisburg winning that game pretty handily, 69-46. A lot has happened since then. Harrisburg has moved into the top 10 in the Class 2 state rankings and New Franklin is playing much better basketball, especially with the addition of Blake Carleton earlier this semester. As I see it, New Franklin has nothing to lose in this game, while Harrisburg is on the other end of that spectrum, with the pressure to win at home and reach its first district championship game since 2009. But I’m sorry, New Franklin folks. I can’t see myself picking another upset tonight. Prediction: Harrisburg 73, New Franklin 60.

No. 3 Salisbury (B) vs. No. 2 Fr. Tolton Catholic (7:30 p.m. tip-off): This could possibly be the greatest semifinal matchup in “District of Doom” history, and my gosh, there have been some dandies. Fayette-Sturgeon last season, Harrisburg-Salisbury and Fayette-Sturgeon three years ago, just to name a few. The list could go on, but you get the picture. I’ve heard mixed predictions from various people on this game, and I see valid points for either team winning this game on paper. However, I’ll go into some detail on my prediction. Head-to-head, I think Michael Porter and Brady Francis cancel each other out, and Josh Boyer and Keegan Wyatt cancel each other out. In my opinion, the difference maker tonight will be Brennan Church, and while Lane Springer is Salisbury’s best chance to match his productivity, I think Church helps put Tolton over the top in this game. No matter who wins this game, I don’t think fans will leave Harrisburg disappointed tonight. Prediction: Tolton Catholic 76, Salisbury 69.

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Wednesday’s district tournament results

I feel like I’ve been consumed by tonight’s Class 2 District 7 girls semifinal games, but there were plenty of other contests on tap earlier tonight. Here are the results in the small-school north-central Missouri area.

And a quick shout-out to my hometown. The Boonville girls beat Southern Boone to reach the Class 3 District 8 championship game and will play Blair Oaks at 6 p.m. Friday.

Class 2 District 7 @ Harrisburg

  • (1) New Franklin (G) 60, (4) Tolton Catholic 53 (OT)
  • (2) Harrisburg (G) 60, (3) Sturgeon 57

Class 1 District 9 @ Glasgow

  • (4) Chamois (G) 42, (1) Glasgow 38
  • (1) Glasgow (B) 54, (5) Calvary Lutheran 28

Class 2 District 6 @ Schuyler County

No games played Wednesday

Class 2 District 5 @ Clopton

  • (1) Clopton (G) 70, (5) Louisiana 34
  • (3) South Shelby (G) 65, (2) Canton 42

Class 1 District 8 @NW Hughesville

  • (1) Pilot Grove (G) 68, (4) NW Hughesville 43
  • (2) Bunceton (G) 65, (3) Otterville 40

Class 1 District 10 @ Madison

  • (1) Marion County (B) 64, (5) Bevier 41
  • (3) North Shelby (B) 70, (2) La Plata 57

Class 1 District 12 @ Tina-Avalon

  • (1) Norborne (G) 37, (4) Tina-Avalon 36
  • (1) Hale/Bosworth (B) 75, (4) Norborne 67
  • (3) Keytesville (G) 71, (2) Hale/Bosworth 44
  • (3) Tina-Avalon (B) 54, (2) Northwestern 46
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Predictions for Day Three of the 2014 Class 2 District 7 Tournament

Six games down, six games to go and a perfect 6-0 prediction record thus far for yours truly. We’re on to girls semifinal action tonight. Will I go 2-0, 1-1, or 0-2? All three possibilities are plausible.

No. 4 Tolton Catholic (G) vs. No. 1 New Franklin (6 p.m. tip-off): I always consider Tolton a wild card in this district, because of their unfamiliarity with the other teams. New Franklin has wins over Harrisburg, Salisbury, Sturgeon, Fayette, Westran and Slater…but never played Tolton this season. They do, however, have a few common opponents: Pilot Grove, Harrisburg and as of Monday, Slater. The edge in that department goes to New Franklin, which won on a neutral court against Harrisburg while Tolton lost to the Lady Bulldogs at home. But in the end, none of what I just said is going to matter tonight. New Franklin, despite a 24-1 record, has played some up-and-down basketball the past month. Tolton, on the other hand, has lost some games toward the end of the season, but played up in those losses. I think New Franklin is going to give its fans another close game. Prediction: New Franklin 48, Tolton Catholic 44.

No. 3 Sturgeon (G) vs. No. 2 Harrisburg (7:30 p.m. tip-off): It’s not a district tournament unless Harrisburg and Sturgeon play each other. Sturgeon won last year. Harrisburg won the year before. Time to see if Harrisburg can take advantage of home-court advantage, which I think they will. Prediction: Harrisburg 55, Sturgeon 48.

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Tuesday’s district tournament results

Once again, here are results from districts that include teams from the Lewis & Clark, CAC, CCAA and Harrisburg.

Class 2 District 7 @ Harrisburg

  • (2) Tolton Catholic (B) 99, (7) Fayette 31
  • (3) Salisbury (B) 76, (6) Slater 44
  • (5) New Franklin (B) 70, (4) Sturgeon 66

Class 1 District 9 @ Glasgow

  • (2) Community (G) 61, (7) Higbee 31
  • (2) Community (B) 61, (7) Chamois 27
  • (3) Prairie Home (G) 49, (6) Calvary Lutheran 29
  • (3) Jamestown (B) 76, (6) Higbee 50

Class 2 District 6 @ Schuyler County

  • (2) Marceline (G) 43, (7) Milan 27
  • (3) Knox County (B) 65, (6) Marceline 52
  • (4) Scotland County (G) 50, (5) Schuyler County 49
  • (2) Scotland County (B) 60, (7) Milan 48

Class 2 District 5 @ Clopton

  • (2) Louisiana (B) 55, (7) Paris 31
  • (1) Canton (B) 72, (8) Van-Far 47
  • (3) Clopton (B) 69, (6) South Shelby 57
  • (5) Silex (B) 54, (4) Wellsville 47

Class 1 District 8 @ NW Hughesville

  • (1) Pilot Grove (B) 69, (8) Calhoun 21
  • (4) NW Hughesville (B) 59, (5) Otterville 51
  • (6) Kingsville (B) 52, (3) Chilhowee 48
  • (2) Leeton (B) 56, (7) Bunceton 16

Class 1 District 10 @ Madison

  • (1) Marion County (G) 60, (5) La Plata 44
  • (2) Atlanta (G) 56, (3) Macon County/Bucklin 55

Class 1 District 12 @ Tina-Avalon

  • (4) Norborne (B) 66, (5) Keytesville 31
  • (2) Northwestern (B) 68, (7) Malta Bend 35
  • (3) Tina-Avalon (B) 60, (6) Brunswick 44
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