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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS

Pigskin Prophecies

October 15, 1998

Whoever coined the phrase, 'Great minds think alike,' never met The Prophet and his opponent this week. Steve Henson is a Newbury Park graduate, and he was selected to pick this week because the prophet predicted (correctly we might add) that Henson would go with his heart instead of his head and tab Newbury Park to defeat Westlake in the game of the week. What a honk! But beyond that choice--and The Prophet predicting much-maligned Royal to end Moorpark's winning streak--Henson will be wrong on only one other choice. All of his other choices are the same as The Prophet's. Even the scores are similar.

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THE PROPHET

Season totals for The Prophet: 49 of 75 (65%), 81 points

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STEVE HENSON

Season totals for the guests: 47 of 75 (63%), 71 points

GAME OF THE WEEK (5 points)

Newbury Park at Westlake (tonight, 7)

THE PROPHET SAYS: Over the years, Newbury Park has been Westlake's nemesis, and again the Panthers are probably the only thing standing between the Warriors and a league championship. Westlake is beat up; Travis Campbell probably won't play. Newbury Park has won four in a row. So, of course, Westlake will play its best game of the season. Westlake, 35-21.

HENSON SAYS: Westlake has a better defense, commits fewer turnovers and defeated the Panthers in the last two even-numbered years. But I wore a Newbury Park black-and-gold helmet once upon a time and anyone who picks against his alma mater should remember that this is more about fun than prophet. Newbury Park, 31-30.

Other Top Games (each 3 points)

Kennedy at Taft

THE PROPHET SAYS: Since Northwest Valley Conference play started, Kennedy has been new and improved. But the Golden Cougars would need to step up several notches in order to beat Taft, which has two shutouts in three games. Taft, 28-14.

HENSON SAYS: Taft's improved lights will help Kennedy's potent passing attack, but Toreador tailback Marquis Brignac will light up the scoreboard. Taft, 27-21.

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Palmdale at Lancaster

THE PROPHET SAYS: Any school that schedules a homecoming even though it doesn't have any alumni has my respect. Why, I don't know. Maybe it's that stingy Lancaster defense. Lancaster, 27-10.

HENSON SAYS: Lancaster, a whippersnapper in its second season of varsity football, will inflict growing pains on old man Palmdale, a charter member of the Golden League. Lancaster, 28-14.

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Royal at Moorpark

THE PROPHET SAYS: Royal showed a pulse against Westlake last week, slowing the Warriors' vaunted passing game. Moorpark is undefeated and has a Ventura County-record 18-game winning streak dating to its Division X championship run last season. Snap out of it Dorothy, you're not in Division X anymore. Upset special: Royal, 14-13.

HENSON SAYS: Moorpark, which has outscored opponents, 176-58, with more Art (Garcia and Lopez) than science, will reload the muskets and defeat a team with a losing record for the sixth time, causing a disbelieving Prophet to break down crying (Prophet-tearing?). Moorpark, 17-15.

The Rest (1 point each)

Granada Hills at San Fernando: The Prophet: No John Elway, Anthony Davis or Charles White in the latest installment of this storied rivalry, but a good game anyway. Granada Hills, 20-13. Henson: Granada Hills, 38-24.

Van Nuys at Canoga Park: The Prophet: Anyone who thinks the Wolves aren't for real is barking up the wrong tree. Van Nuys, 14-12. Henson: Van Nuys, 21-17.

Monroe at Reseda: The Prophet: Reseda has been shut out twice--but that was with quarterback Skyler McKnight injured. He's back and so are the Regents. Reseda, 21-14. Henson: Reseda, 30-10.

Harvard-Westlake at Notre Dame: The Prophet: The easiest choice between undefeated teams so far this season. The Wolverines are improved--but not this improved. Notre Dame, 28-14. Henson: Notre Dame, 38-17.

Burroughs vs. Valencia at College of the Canyons: The Prophet: Burroughs has an impressive passing attack, Valencia a dominant ground game and better balance. Poppa always said, "If you can't run, you'd better hide." Valencia, 28-22. Henson: Valencia, 33-28.

Rio Mesa at Hueneme: The Prophet: Hueneme won't get its third consecutive shutout but Keary Colbert will haul in yet another long scoring pass. Hueneme, 41-21. Henson: Hueneme, 41-31.

Santa Paula at Fillmore: The Prophet: This is the oldest rivalry in Ventura County, dating to . . . a heckuva long time ago. I never thought I'd side with a coach named Hoppy, but: Santa Paula, 12-7. Henson: Fillmore, 7-6.

Oxnard at Camarillo: The Prophet: Camarillo has won three in a row against foes similar to what the Scorpions will see Friday. Camarillo, 30-27. Henson: Camarillo, 24-21.

Crespi at Serra: The Prophet: If I had the power to determine which Serra team would show up on a given week, I'd be playing in Vegas instead of writing a newspaper column. Crespi, 14-10. Henson: Crespi, 14-12.

Chaminade at St. Francis: The Prophet: If St. Francis scores on a fumblerooski, it wins. Here's saying it won't. Chaminade, 22-17. Henson: Chaminade, 22-20.

Loyola at Alemany: The Prophet: Maybe Loyola will come in overconfident after defeating Hart last week. Maybe it won't matter. Loyola, 28-7. Henson: Loyola, 28-20.

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