Previews of the Big Games of Week 9
3A No. 6 Lakes (4-0 league, 7-1 overall) vs. Bonney Lake (4-0, 7-1), 7 p.m. Friday at Sunset Chev Stadium
Lowdown: The upstart Panthers will try to slay traditional power Lakes when the two meet with the SPSL 3A title and a home playoff game on the line. Bonney Lake has the league’s top-rated offense (427.8 yards per game) and defense (215.9). QB Chris Brown (129-of-196 for 2,091 yards, 26 TDs) and WR Austin Marshall (61 catches for 1,111 yards, 18 TDs) are have record-setting seasons, but RB Tyler Babukas is quietly having a spectacular season. Babukas leads the league in all-purpose yards with 1,190. As good as Bonney Lake’s defense has been, it has not faced an offense with Lakes’ firepower. QB Cedric Dozier possesses a combination of speed and elusiveness that few can match. A dual-threat, Dozier is closing in on totaling 1,000 yards rushing and passing. Another junior, RB Levonte Littlejohn leads the league in rushing with 833 yards and averages 10.2 yards per carry. At least one SPSL 3A coach said Littlejohn is one of the best athletes in the state. Lakes has been hit hard by injuries this season, but the Lancers keep finding ways to win.
TNT pick: Lakes 30, Bonney Lake 28
Narrows League 4A
Gig Harbor (5-1 league, 6-2 overall) at Bellarmine Prep (5-1, 7-1), 7 p.m. Friday
Lowdown: Both teams are out of the league title hunt, but there’s a lot at stake in this game. The winner will host a playoff game next week against the fourth-place team from the SPSL North, while the loser will go on the road to face ninth-ranked Rogers, the second-place team in the SPSL South. Bellarmine Prep came close to toppling Olympia last week, but ultimately lost 37-30. QB Sefo Liufau completed 22 of 30 239 yards and the Lions forced five turnovers against the Bears. Bellarmine Prep had difficulty stopping the run on defense and a healthy RB Spencer Manjarrez could have a big game tonight for the Tides. The Lions played the Bears much closer than Gig Harbor did a week earlier when the Tides fell 32-12. Of course, comparing losses to a common opponent doesn’t always translate perfectly
TNT pick: Bellarmine Prep 27, Gig Harbor 20
Orting (5-1 league, 5-3 overall) at 1A No. 1 Cascade Christian (6-0, 8-0), 7 p.m. Saturday at Sunset Chev Stadium
Lowdown: In two of the last three seasons, the winner of this game has won the Nisqually League title. This year is no different and there’s much more than a league championship on the line. The winner receives an automatic berth to the state playoffs and the loser will host a state play-in game next week, possibly against eighth-ranked King’s. Cascade Christian is going for its fourth straight league title. The Cougars welcomed back RB Colton Faverty last week, who missed a month with an ankle injury. Faverty ran for 180 yards and four touchdowns, instantly adding another wrinkle to Cascade Christian’s high-scoring attack. Last week, Orting ran all over Port Townsend in a 48-14 victory. Christian Yoro had touchdown runs of 78, 48 and 17 yards and Evan Chandler scored on runs of 79 and 2 yards.
TNT pick: Cascade Christian 33, Orting 21