Here are our picks.
Class C hosted by Harbor Beach
Sandusky vs. Harbor Beach – The Redskins are reeling after losing two straight games to close out the regular season.
I don’t see them losing three in a row.
Harbor Beach might push them for a bit, but the Redskins are too strong.
PICK: Sandusky 51, Harbor Beach 36
EPBP vs. Ubly – Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port had a fine season at 14-6 while the Bearcats gave major effort, but were winless.
The Lakers advance.
PICK: EPBP 54, Ubly 32
Bad Axe vs. Cass City – These two teams seem to play every year in the post-season.
The Red Hawks hold a 2-0 regular-season edge, though one of the games did go to overtime.
PICK: Cass City 37, Bad Axe 35
Sandusky vs. EPBP – The Redskins own a 17-point win over the Lakers way back in the early part of the season.
It will be closer this time, but with the same result.
PICK: Sandusky 50, EPBP 46
USA vs. Cass City – Cass City beat the Patriots by four in the only meeting this season.
USA gets some revenge.
PICK: USA 42, Cass City 37
FINALS: Sandusky vs. USA – Sandusky usually plays in the district to the south, battling Greater Thumb East rivals Marlette and Brown City.
This year, the Redskins cruise to the district crown.
PICK: Sandusky 56, USA 43
Class C hosted by Mayville
Vassar vs. Mayville – The Wildcats are no match for the Vulcans.
PICK: Vassar 44, Mayville 30
Dryden vs. Marlette – Next.
PICK: Marlette 60, Dryden 39
Brown City vs. Memphis – Memphis is a very good North Central Thumb League squad. But the Green Devils are a very good GTC squad.
PICK: Brown City 56, Memphis 43
Vassar vs. Marlette – Marlette beat Vassar by a single point during the middle part of the season.
It happens again.
PICK: Marlette 49, Vassar 48
Brown City vs. New Haven – The Green Devils make it an all-GTE final.
PICK: Brown City 55, New Haven 45
FINALS: Marlette vs. Brown City – Two very good teams with several fine players.
Should be a great game.
Jenna Hirsch, a candidate for Thumb Player of the Year honors, will make a play down the stretch to give the Raiders the title.
PICK: Marlette 40, Brown City 38
Class D hosted by Port Hope
Caseville vs. Port Hope – The Bluestars would be smart to take this game seriously. The Eagles, despite just three wins this season, are a dangerous team.
PICK: Port Hope 33, Caseville 25
Owen-Gage vs. A-Fairgrove – The Bulldogs want another shot at the Bluestars.
PICK: Owen-Gage 49, A-Fairgrove 40
Port Hope vs. North Huron – The Bulldogs get their wish.
PICK: Port Hope 50, North Huron 40
FINALS: Port Hope vs. Owen-Gage – It’s only fitting that the NCTL North Division co-champions meet in the finals.
I like the Bluestars, but not by much.
PICK: Port Hope 51, Owen-Gage 48
Class D hosted by Peck
Peck vs. Deckerville – The Eagles clipped the Pirates twice this season.
Make it three times.
PICK: Deckerville 51, Peck 36
Kimball New Life vs. Kimball Landmark – I like Life!
PICK: New Life 39, Landmark 30
Deckerville vs. CPS – The Eagles roll.
PICK: Deckerville 49, CPS 35
New Life vs. Kingston – The Cardinals didn’t have a great regular season, but they get a shot at a district crown.
PICK: Kingston 44, New Life 29
FINALS: Deckerville vs. Kingston – Kingston beat Deckerville by six points a few weeks ago to even the season series.
The Eagles, though, are off to the regionals again.
PICK: Deckerville 46, Kingston 40
Class C at Harbor Beach
Sandusky at Harbor Beach: Let’s see if the Redskins can snap out of their late-season funk. The Pirates may also be playing without their leading scorer, Tori Kraft.
PICK: Sandusky 50, Harbor Beach 35
EPBP at Ubly: The Lakers had a fine regular season, with a couple of very nice wins. They could be a dark horse in this district.
PICK: EPBP 56, Ubly 30
Bad Axe at Cass City: This is a perfect example of where a neutral site is needed.
PICK: Cass City 45, Bad Axe 40
Sandusky vs. EPBP: EPBP beat Brown City, Brown City beat Sandusky. I’m going with the Lakers.
PICK: EPBP 51, Sandusky 48
USA vs. Cass City: As big of a tossup game there is in this tournament.
PICK: Cass City 47, USA 42
FINAL: EPBP vs. Cass City: Cass City is still young. I expect the Red Hawks to compete for a league title next season, but it’s EPBP’s year.
PICK: EPBP 54, Cass City 45
Class C at Mayville
Vassar at Mayville: The up-and-down Vulcans should have no trouble in this game.
PICK: Vassar 61, Mayville 35
Dryden at Marlette: Dryden may have switched leagues, but it’s still no match for one of the best teams in the GTC.
PICK: Marlette 70, Dryden 39
Brown City at Memphis: The Yellowjackets had a fine year, rolling through the NCTL South. They are deep and played a tough non-league schedule. This could be a little closer than some might think.
PICK: Brown City 55, Memphis 49
Vassar vs. Marlette: We’re heading to an all-GTE championship, so that excludes Vassar.
PICK: Marlette 52, Vassar 43
New Haven vs. Brown City: I know nothing about New Haven, but I know Brown City had a very nice season. That’s enough for me.
PICK: Brown City 59, New Haven 51
FINAL: Brown City vs. Marlette: The teams split the regular season series and this one is on a neutral floor, where it should be. The Green Devils are on a roll after beating Sandusky.
PICK: Brown 59, Marlette 55
Class D at Port Hope
Caseville vs. Port Hope: The Bluestars are gunning for back-to-back district championships.
PICK: Port Hope 53, Caseville 46
Owen-Gage vs. Akron-Fairgrove: Owen-Gage had two goals this season — win an NCTL North championship and a district title. The Bulldogs already accomplished the first part.
PICK: Owen-Gage 59, Akron-Fairgrove 42
Port Hope vs. North Huron: The x-factor will be if the NCTL’s leading scorer, Sara Clancy, can return for the Warriors. If she does, it could drastically affect this tournament.
PICK: Port Hope 43, North Huron 42
FINAL: Owen-Gage vs. Port Hope: The two North co-champs square off for a third time after splitting their regular season meetings.
PICK: Port Hope 41, Owen-Gage 40, OT
Class D at Peck
Peck vs. Deckerville: It hasn’t been quite the year Deckerville was looking for, but I think the Eagles will be refocused for the post-season.
PICK: Deckerville 46, Peck 36
Kimball New Life vs. Kimball Landmark Academy: I know nothing about either. Coin flip — heads for New Life, tails for Landmark. Heads it is.
PICK: Kimball New Life 43, Kimball Landmark 42
Deckerville vs. CPS: The Eagles keep on rolling to another district title.
PICK: Deckerville 51, CPS 44
Kimball New Life vs. Kingston: The Cardinals have played some teams pretty tough this season. I think they have enough to make it to the championship.
PICK: Kingston 59, Kimball New Life 40
FINAL: Deckerville vs. Kingston: Deckerville may have switched leagues, but it won’t prevent the Eagles from winning another title.
PICK: Deckerville 56, Kingston 49