High School Sports

Who will win? Week 10 high school football games to watch, predictions

Capital defenders Jack Collard (4), Ryan Guscott (5) and Chad Garland (34) fight to bring down Yelm running back James Palmer during Friday night's football game at Ingersoll Stadium in Olympia on Oct. 13, 2017.
Capital defenders Jack Collard (4), Ryan Guscott (5) and Chad Garland (34) fight to bring down Yelm running back James Palmer during Friday night's football game at Ingersoll Stadium in Olympia on Oct. 13, 2017. toverman@theolympian.com

Here are three high school football games to watch this week in the lower South Sound, and a full schedule of every other game a local program is playing in.

3A DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

STADIUM (4-5) AT NO. 7 TIMBERLINE (9-0)

8 p.m. Friday, South Sound Stadium, Lacey

About the Tigers: Stadium is still looking to advance to the state playoffs for the first time in program history. The Tigers lost to Peninsula in this round last year, coming up one game short, and arguably walk into tougher territory against the undefeated Blazers. But, senior QB Hunter Wendling (159 of 252, 2,262 yards, 23 TDs) has been here before, and has one of the South Sound’s top receivers in Xavier Mason (59 catches, 962 yards, 10 TDs). If the Tigers can find some open air, they might make history, too.

About the Blazers: For all of the games Timberline has won comfortably this season, last week’s 51-14 drubbing of Peninsula in the 3A South Sound Conference title game made the biggest statement. There are few — if any — weaknesses in this program entering the playoffs, which has several players with game-changing ability. RB Michael Barnes (165 carries, 1,026 yards, 10 TDs) brought his season rushing total into four digits last week, while Timberline’s defense continues to collectively shut down opponents, allowing just 7.8 points per game.

Olympian pick: Timberline, 35-14.

YELM (6-3) AT BETHEL (8-1)

7 p.m. Friday, Art Crate Stadium, Spanaway

About the Tornados: Yelm is in the playoffs for the first time in more than a decade, with a chance to advance to the state playoffs for the first time in three. The program’s first — and only — state-playoff appearance was in 1987, and ended with a quarterfinals loss to Tumwater. Bethel, a team the Tornados lost to in their season-opener, is all that stands in the way. Sophomore QB Ben Hoffman (18 of 36, 220 yards, TD) continues to fill in for injured starter Kyle Robinson (ankle), while RB James Palmer (123 carries, 791 yards, 12 TDs) has seen an increase in workload.

About the Braves: Bethel has six straight wins since dropping its only loss of the season to 3A Pierce County League champion Lincoln in Week 3, and evaded traveling to play defending state champion Kamiakin with a win over Lakes to cap the regular season. Instead, the Braves — led by QB Nate Hughes (149 of 222, 2,086 yards, 31 TDs) — meet the Tornados for a second time, with an opportunity to reach the state playoffs for the first time since 2011. This is the third meeting in two years between the programs. The previous two were each decided by three points.

Olympian pick: Bethel, 31-28.

2A DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

WHITE RIVER (5-3) AT RIVER RIDGE (5-3)

5 p.m. Friday, South Sound Stadium, Lacey

About the Hornets: In his second season at White River, coach Jeff Zenisek — who led Central Washington University to an NAIA national title in 1995 — has the Hornets in the hunt for their first state-playoff appearance since 2013. River Ridge has won the only two meetings between the programs since 2014, when it joined the 2A South Puget Sound League, by a combined score of 82-6. But, don’t expect the Hornets to be an easy out this time — their only two league losses this season are to two playoff teams in Franklin Pierce and Mountain Division champion Fife.

About the Hawks: Riding a wave of young talent, River Ridge is on the cusp of advancing to the state playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. Junior QB Tomasi Manu (35 of 67, 484 yards; 28 carries, 311 yards; 14 total TDs) has been key for the Hawks in all three phases. In last week’s crossover win over Franklin Pierce, he recorded four touchdowns, including an 87-yard kickoff return and 94-yard interception return. Junior RB Maleko Mina (127 carries, 688 yards, six TDs) adds another consistent threat, and has recorded four games of 100 more more rushing yards.

Olympian pick: River Ridge, 28-17.

WEEK 10 SCHEDULE

Games at 7 p.m. Friday at host high school, unless otherwise noted.

4A DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

OLYMPIA (5-4) AT NO. 1 WOODINVILLE (9-0)

Saturday at Pop Keeny Stadium, Bothell

Olympian pick: Woodinville, 38-7.

3A DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

STADIUM (4-5) AT NO. 7 TIMBERLINE (9-0)

8 p.m. at South Sound Stadium, Lacey

Olympian pick: Timberline, 35-14.

YELM (6-3) AT BETHEL (8-1)

Olympian pick: Bethel, 31-28.

2A DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

WHITE RIVER (5-3) AT RIVER RIDGE (5-3)

5 p.m. at South Sound Stadium, Lacey

Olympian pick: River Ridge, 28-17.

BLACK HILLS (5-4) AT COLUMBIA RIVER (4-5)

5 p.m. Saturday at Kiggins Bowl, Vancouver

Olympian pick: Black Hills, 17-10.

WASHOUGAL (6-3) AT NO. 2 TUMWATER (7-2)

Olympian pick: Tumwater, 42-17.

WOODLAND (5-4) AT W.F. WEST (7-2)

Olympian pick: W.F. West, 30-24.

2B DISTRICT PLAYOFFS

NO. 9 RAINIER (6-2) AT NO. 10 WAHKIAKUM (7-2)

Olympian pick: Wahkiakum, 27-21.

NONLEAGUE

CAPITAL (3-6) AT WILSON (2-7)

At Stadium High School

Olympian pick: Capital, 35-20.

SPANAWAY LAKE (2-7) AT NORTH THURSTON (1-8)

Thursday

Olympian pick: Spanaway Lake, 28-24.

MOUNT TAHOMA (1-8) AT SHELTON (0-9)

Olympian pick: Mount Tahoma, 21-17.

Lauren Smith: 360-754-5473, @smithlm12

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