Fans looking ahead to Pea Ridge vs. Shiloh Christian next week should just hold your horses, as your grandma or grandpa used to say.
There's other games to be played before that showdown between the current undefeated co-leaders in the 4A-1 Conference. Pea Ridge is at Huntsville tonight while Shiloh Christian awaits Gravette, which is capable of the upset, especially if the Saints are looking at the forest and not at the large oak tree directly in front of them.
That's the best way I can describe a trap game, where a favored team can get blindsided if it's caught looking ahead against a capable opponent. Shiloh Christian (6-2, 5-0) should be focused entirely on Gravette (5-3, 3-2), which averages 30 points per game and has one of the league's best players in Cedric Duarte, who's rushed for 1,149 yards and 16 touchdowns this season. Duarte should be ready tonight after he rested his sore legs and carried the ball only six times last week during a 21-0 win over Huntsville.
Shiloh Christian outscored Lincoln 29-0 in the second quarter last week and won 49-13. Three players rushed for more than 70 yards for the Saints, including sophomore quarterback Connor Reece, who broke a 7-7 tie with a 61-yard touchdown run. Reece has also thrown for more than 1,500 yards this season.
Shiloh Christian is well-positioned toward its goal of reclaiming a conference championship after spending two years in the 5A-West. Gravette is dangerous but the coaches at Shiloh Christian will have their players focused on the Lions and not the Blackhawks tonight at Champions Stadium.
Rick's Pick: Shiloh Christian
Other games involving teams from Northwest Arkansas (selections are capitalized).
BENTONVILLE at Rogers Heritage
Rogers at FAYETTEVILLE
Springdale Har-Ber at FORT SMITH NORTHSIDE
FORT SMITH NORTHSIDE at Springdale
BRYANT at Siloam Springs
Farmington at MAUMELLE
Berryville at PRAIRIE GROVE
LINCOLN at Gentry
Gravette at SHILOH CHRISTIAN
PEA RIDGE at Huntsville
ELKINS at Greenland
Green Forest at WEST FORK
UNION CHRISTIAN at Decatur
MOUNTAINBURG at Magazine
Last Week: 13-1 (92 percent)
Overall: 82-33 (71 percent)
Sports on 10/31/2014
Print Headline: Saints Look To Avoid Upset