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Week 9 football picks: Bartram, Raines will earn district titles

Raines running back Nigel Smith carries the ball in the Northwest Classic against Ribault. (Gary Lloyd McCullough, For News4Jax)
Raines running back Nigel Smith carries the ball in the Northwest Classic against Ribault. (Gary Lloyd McCullough, For News4Jax)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax sports editor Justin Barney's weekly high school football predictions will be published each Thursday. All games at 7 p.m. unless indicated. District games indicated by an *.

Last week: 18-17. Season: 180-69 (.723).

THURSDAY

Atlantic Coast (2-5, 1-2) at First Coast (1-5, 0-3), 6 p.m.: Stingrays have turned things around significantly in the second half of the season. N4J pick: Atlantic Coast 29, First Coast 22

Bishop Snyder (1-6) at Wolfson (5-2), 6 p.m.: Wolfpack is in the midst of its best season in what feels like a lifetime. N4J pick: Wolfson 34, Snyder 6

Episcopal (7-1) at Paxon (2-5), 6 p.m.: Eagles are on a tear and roll over the Golden Eagles. N4J pick: Episcopal 35, Paxon 13

Jackson (2-5) at Englewood (1-6), 6 p.m.: Tigers have had a letdown season after a strong 2018. They get back on track here. N4J pick: Jackson 31, Englewood 14

Lee (5-2) at Trinity Christian (3-5), 7:30 p.m.: Back and forth I've gone on this game. Trinity's season is on the line if it doesn't win out. N4J pick: Trinity 31, Lee 30

Middleburg (2-5) at Parker (4-2), 6 p.m.: Braves have won four straight and should get a winner-take-all game next week. Broncos got starched by 48 to a winless team last week. N4J pick: Parker 35, Middleburg 7

Stanton (1-5, 1-1) at Ribault (2-4, 0-2), 6 p.m.: Trojans bounce back after a tough Northwest Classic loss. N4J pick: Ribault 35, Stanton 7

White (3-4, 1-2) at Westside (6-1, 2-0), 6 p.m.: Commanders are in spoiler role at this point? Will it be enough? N4J pick: Westside 27, White 14

Yulee (3-4, 2-0) at Raines (4-2, 3-0), 6 p.m.: Vikings win the district title here. N4J pick: Raines 34, Yulee 14 

FRIDAY 

Baldwin (7-1) at University Christian (6-1), 7:30 p.m.: Could this be the game of the night? Has the makings of a great one. N4J pick: UC 32, Baldwin 27

Bartram Trail (7-0, 2-0) at Oakleaf (5-2, 1-1): Bears will sew up District 1-8A on the road, and a Mandarin win over Sandalwood. N4J pick: Bartram 33, Oakleaf 24. 

Bradford (2-4) at Palatka (2-5): Evenly matched game and should be a good one. N4J pick: Bradford 19, Palatka 14

Bronson (4-3) at Christ's Church (6-1): Eagles bounce back after loss last week. N4J pick: Christ's Church 28, Bronson 21

Cedar Creek Christian (1-6) at Eagle's View (4-4): Warriors pick up win No. 5. N4J pick: Eagle's View 34, Cedar Creek 12

Clay (0-7) at Bolles (5-1), 7:30 p.m.: Bulldogs run winning streak to six. N4J pick: Bolles 38, Clay 14

Creekside (3-4, 1-2) at Fletcher (4-3, 2-1), 6 p.m.: A very important game for the Senators, who find themselves just outside the playoff bubble. N4J pick: Fletcher 31, Creekside 24

Delray Beach Atlantic (4-2) at Columbia (6-1), 7:30 p.m.: Did last week show the Tigers' vulnerabilities? I don't think I'd go that far. N4J pick: Columbia 35, Atlantic 29

Gainesville Buchholz (4-3, 2-1) at Fleming Island (6-0, 3-0), 7:30: Probably the most challenging game this season for the Golden Eagles. N4J pick: Fleming 21, Buchholz 20

Hawthorne (5-2) at Union County (3-4), 7:30 p.m.: Tigers need wins to stay in playoff conversation. N4J pick: Hawthorne 30, Union County 20

Hilliard (4-3) at Fernandina Beach (3-5): This is a big one for the Red Flashes. N4J pick: Fernandina Beach 29, Hilliard 22

Interlachen (4-3) at Branford (4-4), 7:30 p.m.: Rams couldn't get by Wolfson last week, but they bounce back here. N4J pick: Interlachen 24, Branford 20

Keystone Heights (5-1) at Taylor (3-3): Indians bounce back from their first loss. N4J pick: Keystone 28, Taylor 20

Mandarin (4-3, 2-1) at Sandalwood (3-3, 1-1), 7 p.m. (ESPNU): Mustangs got right back in to the playoff picture last week. This one's a national game. N4J pick: Mandarin 33, Sandalwood 21

North Florida Educational (3-4) at Chiefland (4-4), 7:30 p.m.: Very tempted to pick NFEI, but I'll default to the home team in this one. N4J pick: Chiefland 34, NFEI 27

Ocala West Port (1-6, 0-3) at Flagler Palm Coast (6-1, 2-1): Bulldogs bounce back strong after their first loss of the season. N4J pick: FPC 44, West Port 7

Orange Park (4-3, 2-0) at Gainesville Eastside (2-5, 1-2), 7:30: Raiders stay perfect in district play. N4J pick: Orange Park 27, Eastside 20

Ridgeview (1-6, 1-0) at Menendez (4-2, 2-0): Panthers won last week and the Falcons survived. N4J pick: Menendez 27, Ridgeview 13

St. Augustine (4-3) at Nease (1-6, 0-3): Panthers have won five games in this rivalry, but won't add a sixth this year. N4J pick: St. Augustine 30, Nease 14

West Nassau (6-1) at Baker County (4-3): A challenging game for the Warriors, who try and hang on to the top seed in Region 1-4A. N4J pick: West Nassau 26, Baker County 21

Others (home team in bold)

Aucilla Christian (7-0) over Joshua Christian (1-5)

Crescent City (3-3) over Zephyrhills Christian (5-2)

Fort White (2-5) over P.K. Yonge (2-5)

Matanzas (1-6) over Lyman (0-7)

St. Johns Country Day (2-3) over Georgia Christian (1-7)


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