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Home Team

Bob Putnam, Rodney Page, Laura Keeley, Matt Baker, John C. Cotey, Joey Knight

Good news, Hernando fans! I picked you to lose

16

November

 

I didn’t exactly go out on a limb, but I picked Gainesville to knock off Hernando in tonight’s Class 6A region quarterfinal.
 
You’re welcome, Leopards fans.
 
I don’t pretend to be an expert at picking games. If I had a good crystal ball, I’d spend my days working at a poker table in Vegas, not covering football. 
 
But I’ve been awful with Hernando’s most important games. Terrible. Horrible.
 
 
Since I started at the Times in July 2011, the Leopards have played about six big-time games. I’m 1-5.
 
Let’s start with last year:

Land O’Lakes (2011)
My prediction: I've waffled all week on the two banged-up teams, but I'll give Jackson Cannon and the Gators' D a slight edge in a physical contest. Land O'Lakes, 17-14
What happened: Hernando, 28-7
 
Sunlake (2011)
My prediction: Expect a close, bruising defensive battle. I'll take my chances on Seahawks QB Cameron Stoltz in the clutch. Sunlake, 21-20
What happened: Hernando, 22-7. I ate crow on the blog after this one.
 
Gainesville (2011)
My prediction: Hernando has improved as the year has gone on, but injuries take their toll. Gainesville, 21-20
What happened: Gainesville, 20-14
 
It didn’t get much better this fall:
 
Sunlake (2012)
My prediction: Hernando has the most talent in the district but hadn't put it together until last week. But Sunlake's defense has improved, and the Seahawks have a speedy ground game that can give the Leopards trouble. The Seahawks get revenge by eking out a close win. Sunlake, 17-14
What happened: Hernando, 14-10
 
I thought I figured it out after that. Hernando is clearly better than I thought. I’ve underestimated the Leopards all along. Let’s fix that.
 
Springstead (2012)
My prediction: Springstead's discipline and hard-working approach have served the Eagles well so far, and it will keep the game close. But Hernando has more speed and athleticism. The Leopards get a big play late from (Tyrail) Hawkins to take a close win. Hernando, 17-14
What happened: Springstead, 28-7
 
OK, so maybe Hernando isn’t as good as I believed. Let’s try again.
 
Nature Coast (2012)
My prediction: NCT's offense is gaining balance alongside star RB Matt Breida. A big pass play late will be the difference and help the Sharks earn an upset victory. NCT, 28-27
What happened: Hernando, 14-7
 
Which brings us to tonight’s game. I picked a Gainesville win (31-13), which is probably good news for the Leopards. Except that one correct game I’ve picked? That was against Gainesville in last year’s playoffs.

 

[Last modified: Friday, November 16, 2012 3:17pm]

    

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Home Team

Bob Putnam, Rodney Page, Laura Keeley, Matt Baker, John C. Cotey, Joey Knight

Good news, Hernando fans! I picked you to lose

16

November

 

I didn’t exactly go out on a limb, but I picked Gainesville to knock off Hernando in tonight’s Class 6A region quarterfinal.
 
You’re welcome, Leopards fans.
 
I don’t pretend to be an expert at picking games. If I had a good crystal ball, I’d spend my days working at a poker table in Vegas, not covering football. 
 
But I’ve been awful with Hernando’s most important games. Terrible. Horrible.
 
 
Since I started at the Times in July 2011, the Leopards have played about six big-time games. I’m 1-5.
 
Let’s start with last year:

Land O’Lakes (2011)
My prediction: I've waffled all week on the two banged-up teams, but I'll give Jackson Cannon and the Gators' D a slight edge in a physical contest. Land O'Lakes, 17-14
What happened: Hernando, 28-7
 
Sunlake (2011)
My prediction: Expect a close, bruising defensive battle. I'll take my chances on Seahawks QB Cameron Stoltz in the clutch. Sunlake, 21-20
What happened: Hernando, 22-7. I ate crow on the blog after this one.
 
Gainesville (2011)
My prediction: Hernando has improved as the year has gone on, but injuries take their toll. Gainesville, 21-20
What happened: Gainesville, 20-14
 
It didn’t get much better this fall:
 
Sunlake (2012)
My prediction: Hernando has the most talent in the district but hadn't put it together until last week. But Sunlake's defense has improved, and the Seahawks have a speedy ground game that can give the Leopards trouble. The Seahawks get revenge by eking out a close win. Sunlake, 17-14
What happened: Hernando, 14-10
 
I thought I figured it out after that. Hernando is clearly better than I thought. I’ve underestimated the Leopards all along. Let’s fix that.
 
Springstead (2012)
My prediction: Springstead's discipline and hard-working approach have served the Eagles well so far, and it will keep the game close. But Hernando has more speed and athleticism. The Leopards get a big play late from (Tyrail) Hawkins to take a close win. Hernando, 17-14
What happened: Springstead, 28-7
 
OK, so maybe Hernando isn’t as good as I believed. Let’s try again.
 
Nature Coast (2012)
My prediction: NCT's offense is gaining balance alongside star RB Matt Breida. A big pass play late will be the difference and help the Sharks earn an upset victory. NCT, 28-27
What happened: Hernando, 14-7
 
Which brings us to tonight’s game. I picked a Gainesville win (31-13), which is probably good news for the Leopards. Except that one correct game I’ve picked? That was against Gainesville in last year’s playoffs.

 

[Last modified: Friday, November 16, 2012 3:17pm]

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

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