Staffer deems Pittsburg football team good competition despite predicting another win for the Tigers

Matt Antonic, Sports Editor

Blue Valley Tigers (5-2) vs. Pittsburg Purple Dragons (6-1)
Pittsburg, Kan.
Friday, Oct. 25, 2013 at 7 p.m.

Last Week:
Blue Valley 47-3 Blue Valley Southwest — Those who braved the freezing rain witnessed another laugher. BV remains undefeated against Southwest, who saw the game get well out of hand before halftime. BV has outscored its last two opponents by a combined score of 82-6.
Blue Valley West 56-35 Pittsburg — BV West finished off Pittsburg in the second half, and dealt a sledgehammer blow to the Dragons playoff aspirations. BV West improved their State ranking to 16 and is now staring a down to the wire playoff battle in the face.

Last Meeting: 2012
Blue Valley 55-0 Pittsburg: The game was a sustained blowout and saw the score slowly pile on, resulting in the starters leaving in the third quarter. BV got revenge for their stunning 2011 home loss to the Dragons, one that nearly derailed the Tigers playoff hopes.

What this game means:
Blue Valley- Point differential is a deciding factor for the playoff teams, and BV has a chance to all but lock up a birth with a big win. The Tigers are +44 on point differential so far, and this game provides another chance to add to the cushion. BV also has a chance to make a statement road win heading into its final regular season game.

Pittsburg- Don’t let the Purple Dragons 6-1 record deceive you. They are a good team, but they have been feasting on inferior competition, mainly rural Kansas High Schools with enrollments of less than 800 students: Parsons, Labette County, Field Kindley. Those are not exactly powerhouse schools. The one big school the Dragons played, BV West, resulted in a 21 point loss.

Blue Valley will win if: The offense scores plenty of points. Pittsburg is very vulnerable to teams with good offenses. Remember, BV West ran up 56 on the Dragons. BV can all but guarantee a win with a high flying offense and a defense that records a few key stops.

Blue Valley will lose if: They allow Pittsburg to hang around at home. This would be a very dangerous game against a team with its back against the wall. BV will face a desperate team that will not hesitate to come out early throwing punches and will pick up momentum from a home crowd. In the end, the offense for BV will be the difference make that will win or lose this game.

Prediction: Pittsburg is a good team, but no where near the same league as Blue Valley. Simply put, the Tigers are faster and stronger. Pittsburg will score points, but the BV defense will settle in and begin to slow the Dragons to a grinding halt, while the offense will pick up where it left off from the last two games. The first half might be close with Pittsburg needing a win to keep its playoff hopes alive, but the Tigers are just too much, and will pull away in the second half.

Final Score Prediction: Blue Valley 42-21 Pittsburg