By: Aaron Poling

Ah, the sweet scent of victory. It smells even better the second time around.

Mitch Boatman knows what I am talking about, because we are the only two LSJ writers to win the Gridiron Picks competition twice this year.

It was quite the battle last week. Five writers finished the week 13-3 with our picks. I won on the tie-breaker, just like I did the last time.

The tie-breaker was the total number of points in the Montague-Whitehall game. I said there would be 50 points scored, and the total was 65. I wasn’t really that close, but was closer than anyone else! As lots of coaches like to say, a win is a win is a win.

I won in large part because I stuck with Montague in the Battle for the Bell thriller. Wildcat kicker Andrew Kooi was able to exorcise a demon from last season, when he missed a big extra point in overtime in the state semifinals, by kicking the game-tying field goal as time ran out, and the game-winner in overtime.

One point of shame for LSJ – we managed to unanimously get a game wrong again, for the third time this season, thanks to Manistee escaping Ludington with a 21-20 win. 

But enough about last week, because there are some interesting games on Friday and Saturday in the final weekend of the regular season.

Unfortunately, we won’t get to see Mona Shores play Zeeland West and try to clinch a conference title. As a consolation, we get to see a rematch of the instant classic that was the 2019 Division 3 state finals – Detroit King at Mona Shores – which will be played at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday. I’m sticking with the Sailors in that one.

Fruitport travels to Spring Lake for the Battle of the Bayou. Give me Spring Lake at home. 

In the West Michigan Conference, Hart picked up its first win of the season last week, and will get its second this week over Mason County Central. Whitehall will bounce back at Oakridge, and Montague will continue to roll against North Muskegon.

In non-conference action, I am taking the Kent City Eagles to beat Orchard View and wrap up a perfect regular season. I also like Muskegon Catholic over Holton and Ludington to defeat Lake City.

Check out our Week 6 picks below. Click twice on the grid to see it full size.

WEEK 5 RESULTS: Aaron Poling 13-3, Jason Goorman 13-3, Mitchell Boatman 13-3, Steve Gunn 13-3, Nate Thompson 13-3, Dave Hart 12-4, Andrew Johnson 11-5.

OVERALL STANDINGS: Boatman 61-11, Thompson 59-13, Gunn 57-15, Goorman 57-15, Hart 55-17, Poling 54-18, Johnson 52-20.