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Can’t-miss games | Friday’s biggest games
All games at 7:30 unless noted
Clearwater Central Catholic (2-1) at Palm Harbor University (3-0)
Breakdown: One of the best matchups of the week between playoff teams from a year ago. The Hurricanes are trying to start 4-0 for the first time with a signature win. The Marauders are trying to beat PHU for the second straight season.
Who’s hot: Marauders running back Diquan Walker has 277 yards rushing and four touchdowns. Hurricanes quarterback Tyler Kaminski is completing more than 70 percent of his passes and has accounted for five of his team’s 10 touchdowns.
Rodney Page’s pick: I love the way PHU plays defense, but I think CCC has enough to win. CCC 21-17.
Bob Putnam’s pick: Low-scoring affair, but I’ll give the edge to the Marauders based on offensive firepower. CCC 17-14.
St. Petersburg (1-2, 0-0) at Northeast (3-0, 0-0)
Breakdown: The first Class 7A-9 game for both schools. St. Petersburg’s running game took a hit when Maurice Hemingway went down with a knee injury against PHU. He may return tonight, but the Green Devils must find some offense to stay competitive this season. Northeast is 3-0 for the first time since 2007. Quarterback Ryan Davis, running back Keith Harrington and receiver Donterio Fowler have been tough for teams to deal with.
Who’s hot: Davis has thrown for 652 yards and rushed for 193 in three games.
Page: St. Petersburg is still trying to figure out its identity and it may take at least another week. Northeast 21-7.
Putnam: Green Devils will be up for this game, but Vikings have more on offense. Northeast 28-21.
Lakewood (2-0, 1-0) at Dunedin (1-2, 1-1)
Breakdown: Dunedin has scored 21 points in three games, and it won’t get any easier against the Spartans. Lakewood has not given up a point in its first two games and had last week off. Quarterback Tracy Johnson has had time to rest a sore shoulder and with receiver Rodney Adams back, he has all his weapons.
Who’s hot: Lakewood’s defense not only shut out Seminole and Blake, but recorded a blocked punt in each game.
Page: Fully rested Lakewood hands it to Dunedin. Lakewood 32-14.
Putnam: The shutout streak ends, but Spartans still win. Lakewood 28-14.
East Lake (2-1) at Ocala Trinity Catholic (1-2)
Breakdown: The Eagles had the same record last year before losing this one to start a two-game skid. Don’t be fooled by the record. Trinity Catholic has lost to quality opponents, such as North Marion, in its first three games.
Who’s hot: East Lake receiver George Campbell has become a viable deep threat with 11 catches for 296 yards and two touchdowns this season.
Page: Trinity Catholic is used to playing up. Should be a close one. East Lake 17-10.
Putnam: The Eagles just look better on paper. East Lake 24-13.
Tarpon Springs (2-1, 0-0) at Dixie Hollins (0-3, 0-0)
Breakdown: The Spongers gave East Lake all it could handle last week before losing 20-14. Michael Ford (331 yards rushing) and Kenyatta Merriex (227 yards, four TDs) have been a tough duo. Battered Dixie Hollins has given up 99 points in three games, so the defense clearly has to get better.
Who’s hot: Dixie’s Marcus Smith had 95- and 90-yard kickoff returns last week against Pinellas Park. Kick to him at your own risk.
Page: Tarpon Springs uses its running game to rebound against the Rebels. Tarpon 33-14.
Putnam: This game looked better at the beginning of the season. Tarpon 28-7.
Largo (3-0, 0-0) at Osceola (1-2, 0-0)
Breakdown: Could the Packers have a letdown following their dominating performance against Countryside? Probably not considering the way Largo has rolled through district play the past few years.
Who’s hot: Largo quarterback Juwan Brown has thrown for 320 yards and five touchdowns this season. Osceola’s Andrew Matyk ran for a touchdown and threw for another in last week’s win against St. Petersburg.
Page: Osceola’s one-game win streak comes to a screeching halt. Largo 46-10.
Putnam: Despite not having Harry Brown, Packers pull through. Largo 28-6.
Countryside (2-1, 0-0) at Seminole (1-2, 0-0)
Breakdown: The Cougars are sure to be testy, especially after having their 27-game regular-season win streak snapped. That’s bad news for the Warhawks, who have lost the past three meetings by a combined score of 113-6.
Who’s hot: Cougars running back Ryan Yates is averaging nearly 100 yards per game and has three touchdowns.
Page: This not a good time to get Countryside. Countryside 35-6.
Putnam: The Cougars are looking to take out their frustrations. Countryside 42-0.
Clearwater (0-2, 0-0) at Pinellas Park (2-1, 0-0)
Breakdown: Let’s assume the Patriots have figured things out on offense after scoring 48 points against Dixie Hollins. That’s bad news for Clearwater, which has had a hard time keeping up with opponents this season.
Who’s hot: Pinellas Park running back Tahrelle Mosley had three touchdown runs last week. If the Patriots get near the end zone, Mosley will get the ball.
Page: Pinellas Park wears teams out with its running game and defense. This is no different. Pinellas Park 27-7.
Putnam: After rebounding last week, the Patriots continue to roll. Pinellas Park 34-12.
Boca Ciega (0-2, 0-0) at Lakewood Ranch (1-2, 0-0)
Breakdown: A Class 6A-7 game between teams that need a win badly. With just 13 points in two games, the Pirates need to find some consistency on offense. Lakewood Ranch is rebuilding and this could be a good game for Boca Ciega to gain some confidence.
Who’s hot: Not only does Fortune Gamble have a cool name, but he scored Boca Ciega’s only touchdown last week against Northeast.
Page: Boca Ciega finally wins one in 2012. Boca Ciega 14-6.
Putnam: Pirates exact revenge for last year’s loss. Boca Ciega 21-13.
Calvary Christian (1-1, 1-0) at Canterbury (0-3, 0-2), 7 p.m.
Breakdown: It’s hard to tell anything about Calvary Christian after it was held to three points against Shorecrest. Canterbury lacks depth and ran into tough Admiral Farragut last week. Both teams need to find an offensive spark.
Who’s hot: Canterbury running back PJ Franklin has gained 239 yards on 40 carries with three touchdowns.
Page: The Crusaders scratch and claw their way to a close win. Canterbury 14-13.
Putnam: In terms of playmakers, the Warriors have more. Calvary 21-20.
Admiral Farragut (3-0, 1-0) at Keswick Christian (0-3, 0-2)
Breakdown: Admiral Farragut, with Cortavious Givens, Todd Macon and Napoleon Maxwell, are loaded on offense. The defense has also been solid, with two straight shut outs.
Who’s hot: Givens scored two touchdowns against Canterbury and feels he has a lot to prove this season after missing the bulk of 2011 with an injury.
Page: No easy way to put it, this will be a lopsided game. AFA 38-0.
Putnam: Blue Jackets gain momentum before next week’s showdown with Carrollwood Day. AFA 35-6.
Cambridge Christian (2-1, 1-1) at Northside Christian (0-3, 0-1)
Breakdown: The Mustangs have given up 141 points, most in their district. They have also scored 10 points, least in the district.
Who’s hot: Cambridge Christian’s Robbie Robertson averages 9 yards per carry and has scored four touchdowns in three games.
Page: Northside is close early, but fades. Cambridge 28-7.
Putnam: Mustangs are showing signs of improvement but not enough to win. Cambridge 35-14.
Carrollwood Day (3-0) at Shorecrest (2-1)
Breakdown: The Patriots have outscored opponents 139-7. Shorecrest is improved, but it is a few years away from being as good as Carrollwood Day.
Who’s hot: Robert Davis has been lights out for CDS, rushing for 590 yards (196.7 per game) and 10 touchdowns.
Page: Shorecrest has been good, but Carrollwood Day is better. CDS 35-14.
Putnam: Chargers will hang in this one for at least a half. CDS 42-28.
Bradenton Christian (2-1, 2-0) at Indian Rocks Christian (1-1, 1-1)
Breakdown: The Golden Eagles won last year 42-28, but are now relying on their defense and special teams more.
Who’s hot: IRC running back Zeke McGaughy has rushed for 236 yards and scored twice in two games.
Page: It will be close for a while, but Bradenton Christian pulls away. Bradenton Chr. 32-21.
Putnam: This is Bradenton Christian’s first real test. IRC 28-21.
For extended predictions on all of tonight’s matchups, visit tampabay.com/hometeam.