Rick's Picks: Prairie Grove, Shiloh Christian matchup part of busy weekend

Posted: October 6, 2017 at 1 a.m.

Folks who live along the U.S. Highway 62 corridor west of Fayetteville have plenty of options this weekend, capped by the three-day apple festival in Lincoln.

I like my apple dumpling topped with two scoops of ice cream, not one. Oh, and I'll take another order to go, please.

There is also the Junk Ranch venue in a pasture south of Prairie Grove and a traveling World War I exhibit at the museum in Cane Hill.

If you're a sports fan, Tiger Stadium in Prairie Grove is the place tonight.

That's where Shiloh Christian (4-1, 2-0) meets No. 5 Prairie Grove (5-0, 2-0), the two-time defending champions in the 4A-1 Conference. Prairie Grove held homecoming last weekend, and the Tigers play at No. 1 Pea Ridge the following week in a much-anticipated matchup. But Shiloh Christian is much too good to be viewed as a trap game, which happens when a team gets caught looking ahead.

Prairie Grove is well aware of the challenge Shiloh Christian presents.

"Shiloh looks the same to me like they always do," Prairie Grove coach Danny Abshier said of the Saints, who last won a state championship in 2010 and reached the state semifinals last season. "They've got big guys who are hustling on every play, and their quarterback is a big, ol' dude who can throw it a long way."

Shiloh Christian quarterback Landon Brown is a baseball standout who threw five touchdown passes in the second quarter of last week's 56-20 victory over Huntsville. It was a solid showing by the Saints, who'll have to play even better to defeat Prairie Grove.

Prairie Grove, winners of 24 straight regular season games, punishes opponents with its running game, and its defense allows only 12 points per game. Crowd the line of scrimmage, and the Tigers can burn a defense with quarterback John David Elder, who has thrown for 711 yards with nine touchdowns and only one interception.

Shiloh Christian can begin to shift the balance of power in the 4A-1 Conference with a big road win. But Prairie Grove has grown accustomed to being on top, and the Tigers aren't likely to relinquish their position at home tonight.

RICK'S PICK Prairie Grove

Other games involving teams from Northwest Arkansas (selections are capitalized).

CLASS 7A

SPRINGDALE HAR-BER at Bentonville High

Rogers at FAYETTEVILLE

VAN BUREN at Rogers Heritage

BENTONVILLE WEST at Springdale

CLASS 6A

Siloam Springs at GREENWOOD

CLASS 5A

Morrilton at ALMA

Farmington at GREENBRIER

CLASS 4A

LINCOLN at Berryville

GENTRY at Huntsville

Gravette at PEA RIDGE

Dover at BOONEVILLE

WALDRON at Pottsville

OZARK at Subiaco Academy

DARDANELLE at West Fork

CLASS 3A

ELKINS at Marshall

Greenland at MOUNTAIN VIEW

Green Forest at YELLVILLE-SUMMIT

MANSFIELD at Cedarville

Two Rivers at CHARLESTON

LAMAR at Perryville

Atkins at PARIS

CLASS 2A

Magazine at DANVILLE

Decatur at HACKETT

Western Yell County at LAVACA

Johnson County Westside at MOUNTAINBURG

LAST WEEK 23-2 (92 percent)

OVERALL 95-25 (79 percent)

Sports on 10/06/2017