Week 2 high school football picks: Can Mandarin slow Bolles; tough matchup for Trinity

Beachside and Tocoi Creek, St. Johns County's newest high schools, faced off in the Football Friday Game of the Week on Friday night. (Kevin Nguyen, News4JAX)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – High school football season is back. That means our football predictions are back, too. Each Thursday during the season, News4JAX sports editor Justin Barney will reveal his picks for the week. All game times are 7 p.m. unless indicated.

Last week: 27-11 (.711). Season: 28-11 (.718).

Week 2 picks

Thursday, Sept. 1

Crescent City (0-1) at Umatilla (0-1): Raiders in a romp: N4J pick: Crescent City 35, Umatilla 7.

Flagler Palm Coast (1-0) at Mainland (1-0): Bulldogs make it back-to-back years with Ws over the Bucs. N4J pick: FPC 21, Mainland 20.

Keystone Heights (0-0) at Gainesville Eastside (1-0): Indians get a W in their opener. N4J pick: Keystone 21, Eastside 17.

Riverside Christian (0-0-1) at Impact Christian (0-1): I’ll pick the Lions again to nab their first win. N4J pick: Impact 19, Riverside Christian 14.

Friday, Sept. 2

Atlantic Coast (0-1) at Ribault (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Both struggled on offense in Week 1 but Stingrays get moving here. N4J pick: Atlantic Coast 14, Ribault 7.

Baldwin (1-0) at Bradford (0-0), 7:30 p.m.: Tornadoes looked like the real deal last week in a weather-suspended game. N4J pick: Bradford 35, Baldwin 13.

(3) Bartram Trail (1-0) at Daytona Beach Seabreeze (0-1): Bears didn’t move the ball too well last week but they pick it up on the road here. N4J pick: Bartram 27, Seabreeze 17.

Bishop Snyder (1-0) at Gainesville Oak Hall (1-0): Cardinals get to 2-0 with a win on the road. N4J pick: Snyder 15, Oak Hall 13.

Cedar Creek Christian (1-0) at Halifax Academy (1-0): Saints march to 2-0. N4J pick: Cedar Creek 21, Halifax 14.

Christ’s Church (0-1) at Victory Christian (0-1): Another tough opponent for the Eagles who visit the perennial playoff program Storm. N4J pick: Victory Christian 27, Christ’s Church 7.

Clay (0-1) at Ridgeview (0-1): Both teams with difficult starts last week. Blue Devils bounce back strong. N4J pick: Clay 35, Ridgeview 7.

(10) Columbia (0-1) at Union County (0-1), 7:30 p.m.: Tigers get back on track. N4J pick: Columbia 31, Union County 13.

Episcopal (1-0) at Orange Park (0-1): Eagles in a close one. N4J pick: Episcopal 21, Orange Park 20.

Fernandina Beach (1-0) vs. Beachside (0-1), at Bartram Trail: Pirates make a 2-0 start under new coach Apollo Wright. N4J pick: Fernandina Beach 28, Beachside 13.

Florida High (1-0) at Ponte Vedra (0-1): Another tough opponent for the Sharks. N4J pick: Florida High 27, Ponte Vedra 21.

(4) Fleming Island (1-0) at Tallahassee Rickards (1-0): Golden Eagles looked great last week. N4J pick: Fleming 33, Rickards 20.

Harvest (1-0) at Eagle’s View (0-1): Warriors X 2 here. Harvest spoiled the debut of Impact last week. Eagle’s View had a tough one against Branford. N4J pick: Eagle’s View 27, Harvest 20.

(7) Jackson (1-1) at Westside (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Tigers looked excellent last week in win over Nease. N4J pick: Jackson 33, Westside 7.

(9) Mandarin (1-0) at (2) Bolles (1-0), 7:30 p.m.: Super 10 showdown between two rising stars at QB, DJ Moore at Bolles and Tramell Jones at Mandarin. N4J pick: Bolles 33, Mandarin 20.

Menendez (1-0) at Englewood (1-0), 6:30 p.m.: Good matchup here with teams coming off Week 1 blowouts. N4J pick: Menendez 23, Englewood 16.

Middleburg (0-1) at Bishop Kenny (1-0): Crusaders are quietly building something special. Broncos try to bounce back after a disappointing Week 1 showing. N4J pick: Kenny 33, Middleburg 14.

Nease (0-1) at (6) Creekside (1-0): Knights looked excellent last week in obliterating Viera. The immense graduation losses the Panthers endured were on display last week. N4J pick: Creekside 33, Nease 17.

NFEI (1-0) at Stanton (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Eagles make it to 2-0. N4J pick: NFEI 30, Stanton 10.

Oakleaf (1-0) at (8) Baker County (0-0): Wildcats struggled in a half against Bradford. Knights sailed past Orange Park. N4J pick: Oakleaf 27, Baker County 20.

Ocala Forest (0-1) at First Coast (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Forest sneaks out of the Shipyard with a win. N4J pick: Forest 21, First Coast 14.

Parker (1-0) at Riverside (1-0), 6:30 p.m.: Braves have the defense to frustrate teams. N4J pick: Parker 17, Riverside 7.

Paxon (0-1) at Wolfson (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Golden Eagles take this one. N4J pick: Paxon 20, Wolfson 14.

Providence (0-1) at Interlachen (1-0), 7:30 p.m.: Rams jump to 2-0 start. N4J pick: Interlachen 27, Providence 20.

(5) Raines (1-0) at (1) Trinity Christian (1-0), 7:30 p.m.: Conquerors have the best rushing attack in town. Can the Vikings slow that down? N4J pick: Trinity 28, Raines 21.

St. Petersburg Gibbs (0-1) at St. Augustine (0-1): Yellow Jackets bounce back after a tough one against Bolles. N4J pick: St. Augustine 28, Gibbs 20.

Tallahassee Chiles (0-1) at Fletcher (0-1), 6:30 p.m.: Senators in the win column. N4J pick: Fletcher 21, Chiles 17.

Tocoi Creek (1-0) at Matanzas (1-0): Pirates cool off the Toros. N4J pick: Matanzas 31, Tocoi Creek 20.

University Christian (1-0) at Hilliard (1-0): Christians looked great last week. N4J pick: UC 33, Hilliard 13.

West Nassau (1-0) at Charlton County (2-0), 7:30 p.m.: Love these Florida-Georgia matchups. N4J pick: Charlton County 30, West Nassau 20.

White (0-1) at Sandalwood (1-0), 6:30 p.m.: Commanders pressed Trinity all the way to the finish last week. N4J pick: White 28, Sandalwood 14.

Yulee (0-1) at Titusville (1-0): Hornets have a long road trip but a very winnable game. Terriers were winless a year ago. N4J pick: Yulee 28, Titusville 13.


Home team in CAPS

DAYTONA BEACH FATHER LOPEZ (0-1) over St. Joseph (0-1)

Newberry (1-0) over FORT WHITE (0-1), 7:30 p.m.

PALATKA (1-0) over Port Orange Atlantic (0-1)

Rocky Bayou Christian (1-0) over HOLLIS CHRISTIAN (0-1)

Suwannee (0-1) over HAMILTON COUNTY (0-0), 7:30 p.m.

ZAREPHATH ACADEMY (0-1) over Young Kids in Motion (1-0).

About the Author:

Justin Barney joined News4Jax in February 2019, but he’s been covering sports on the First Coast for more than 20 years.