An entire season comes down to this as West Pines and Pasadena are the two teams left standing in the 120 lb. division of the American Youth Football Playoffs. The season has been both exciting and intense as many teams entered the playoffs with a legitimate shot at winning the big trophy. West Pines earned their way to the dance by knocking off Cooper City for the second time this season 29-6 at PPO on Saturday. Pasadena busted their way into the Super Bowl in grand fashion as they thrashed defending champion Weston 34-6 in Ft. Lauderdale.
When you look at this matchup, there really isn’t any way that you can go against the Pasadena Panthers in this one. I have picked against Pasadena the past two weeks feeling that they had two match ups that worked against them. However, the hard nosed Panthers answered the challenges and polished off two great opponents and did it handily. Pasadena has earned my respect and enter into this game with a great deal of momentum behind them. Rumor has it that my predictions against them were a great motivating factor and if that is so, then I am sorry to take away that aspect of their preparation. However, I don’t feel they need it. As I explained last week, Pasadena has a group full of gritty players that punch the clock and put in work for a full 40 minutes. I would expect nothing different here and their lunch pail attitude will be too much for West Pines.
The Wildcats looked shaky in week one of the playoffs as they stumbled through their game with Sunrise. Last week, they rose to a challenge against a solid Cooper City team looking for revenge. West Pines’ ground game set the tone early with Jalin Thomas leading the way. Thomas and a strong West Pines ground attack has been the tool for success this season and the Wildcats sharpened that tool against Cooper City. Pasadena will have their hands full with West Pines’ ground game but the Panthers are built to deal with it. In the first meeting this season during week six, both teams had the ground games working and West Pines was able to come away with the narrow victory 16-14. This time, I think Pasadena’s emotional group uses their thirst for payback and triumphs over a West Pines team making their third straight trip to the Super Bowl. I think a trophy escapes the Wildcats for a third straight time Buffalo Bills style in perhaps the greatest game of the day.
Pasadena 14 West Pines 12
Warriors and Wildcats Two Top Ranked Teams
It’s that time again. Predictions for the games in the most exciting division of the American Youth Football League in Broward County, Florida. It seems my prediction riled up some folks last week and may have fired up a few others. What can I say? They’re just predictions folks. Certainly nothing personal as I have a connection with almost every team in the playoff picture. Unfortunately, no one wants to see me predict a tie for no other reason other than the fact that ties can’t happen! Just my opinion and in this division, a prediction is more about a team being really good than the other team being bad. So, no offense should be taken. With that being said, I predicted three out of the four games in this division right last week. Only Pasadena beating PPO kept me away from perfection. There were no upsets which is not usual. Things get hot and heavy this week with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line so here’s how I see it.
(#1 ) Weston 16 (#4) Pasadena 6
Oh sure I could go wild here and pick Weston to lose but why? The Warriors line up every week looking like a team that should and could be beat but for 38 out of 39 weeks that has not been the case. Weston has perfected the little things and have allowed the big things to take care of themselves. Running, blocking and tackling are their specialty and they do it at a level higher than anyone else. Pasadena may be the most gritty, hard nosed team in this division and if I ever needed to go collect some money, I would take these guys with me. However, we are talking football and you can’t argue with Weston’s history and ability to win the big game.
(#3) Cooper City 20 (#2) West Pines 14
These two teams met in week eight of the regular season with West Pines winning in overtime when an extra point attempt by Cooper City hit the uprights and fell into the end zone. West Pines also withstood an opening drive by Cooper City that died inside the 10 yard line. Since that game, West Pines has not really been the same. They struggled the next week against a bad Northeast team, lost to Weston two weeks later and had all kinds of problems against Sunrise last week. Cooper City will be well motivated for the rematch and with two teams so evenly matched, I like the loser of the first matchup to get their revenge.
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Let the insults reign! I love the passion of youth football in South Florida!