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Inside look at high school and Oakland University sports from Oakland Press sports writer Dave Pemberton.

Monday, June 9, 2008

State semifinal predictions

Here are my predictions for the state semifinals (with the Oakland County games first) hopefully I will do better than my 9-6 performance in the regional finals.

Division 2
At Bloomfield Hills Andover
Bloomfield Hills Lahser vs. No. 7 Dexter — Prediction Lahser
The Knights have had a much more difficult route to the semifinals than Dexter. Lahser has had to go through No. 1 Marian, No. 2 Avondale and No. 8 Flint Kearsley. But the Knights have always found a way to win. Whether it be an overtime goal against Marian or rallying from a 2-0 deficit to win in double overtime against Flint Kearsley, Lahser has had that magic touch and I think it will likely continue Wednesday.

Division 3
At Pontiac Notre Dame Prep
No. 7 Detroit Country Day vs. No. 4 Williamston — Prediction Country Day
The Yellowjackets better not look ahead to a showdown with Hudsonville Unity Christian in the championship game for the fourth time in the last five years because Williamston is a quality team. I heard Country Day’s Anna Sieloff showed off her goaltending skills in the shootout against Notre Dame Prep. The Yellowjackets will need Sieloff and Kayla Addison to be on their game offensively and they will advance.

Division 4
At Ultimate Soccer Arenas
No. 3 Madison Heights Bishop Foley vs. Marine City Cardinal Mooney — Prediction Bishop Foley
The Ventures have proven so far they deserve the No. 3 ranking and should advance to the state championship game. I haven’t been to the Ultimate Soccer Arenas yet, but my question is do they have an outdoor field? And if not has a state playoff game ever been played indoors?

Division 1
At Holt
Ann Arbor Huron vs. No. 7 Portage Central — Prediction Portage Cenral (Sorry Eastside can’t go against them this round)

At Utica Eisenhower
No. 3 Utica Eisenhower vs. Grosse Pointe North — Prediction Utica Eisenhower becomes the first Macomb County girls team to advance to the finals

Division 2
At Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central
No. 2 Grand Rapids Forest Hills Central vs. No. 6 Portage Northern — Prediction Forest Hills Central sets up another final with Lahser

Division 3
At Hudsonville Unity Christian
No. 1 Hudsonville Unity Christian vs. Suttons Bay — Prediction Untiy Christian advances and goes for its fourth straight title Saturday

Division 4
At Holton
No. 1 Kalamazoo Christian vs. No. 6 Charlevoix — Prediction Kalamazoo Christian wins a tight one to keep its hopes alive for back-to-back titles.

Random thoughts
— Nobody is saying the MHSAA is perfect and Friday was a perfect case. The kids at Ann Arbor Greenhills and Grosse Pointe South have every right to question the decisions made Friday night.

How can they justify calling games with time on the clock and not coming back, while other teams were coming back at other sites to complete games. Just because there was a score at those sites doesn’t mean they should call the games. There was nearly 30 mintues left in the Bishop Foley-Greenhills game.

I’m not taking anything away from Bishop Foley or Grosse Pointe North because they have to take the victory, but I just feel bad for the kids who lost that way. It had to be hard for them to figure out why they were done, while other schools were coming back to complete games Saturday.

— Lots of people like to bash the state rankings and say there is bias and things like that, but look at the state semifinals. Of the 16 teams left 11 are ranked and one is an honorable mention. Of the other four teams, Ann Arbor Huron and Grosse Pointe North were ranked during the season just not in the final rankings. Lahser was not ranked, but even though everyone knew the Knights were talented it was hard to argue for them being ranked after their horrible start to the season and they entered the state tournament under .500. That leaves Suttons Bay as the only real surprise team that was never ranked.

Anytime someone does a ranking they will be criticized, believe me I know from experience, but considering how many teams there are in the state I have to say the coaches’ association did a heck of a job this year. Keep up the good work guys.



Blogger ars said...

i don't see why no body gives Ann Arbor Huron the credit they deserve. After beating the #1 team in the state you think you could give them a little credit and not think that it was just luck. I hope you put Grosse Point North to win States because its people like you we love proving wrong

June 12, 2008 at 6:30 AM 
Blogger Dave Pemberton said...


I was just making a prediction. When you make predictions, you have to pick one team to lose. I never intended to disrespect anybody. Any team that has made it this far is obviously very talented. But thanks for reading and good luck on Saturday.

June 12, 2008 at 8:15 AM 

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