Dewey's playoff picks

Posted by Press Democrat correspondent Dewey Forget:
With the football playoffs beginning this Friday, it’s always good fun to take a look at the brackets. Hey, we go crazy with March Madness bracketology, so why not take a look at high school football? For what it’s worth, here’s my take on Division II, III, IV and V.
Div. II — Petaluma got the top seed and deservedly so. The Trojans will have a tough time against Rancho Cotate, but should prevail and meet Cardinal Newman in the second round. That could be the Trojans toughest game before the finals. It looks to me as if the Trojans will meet Ygnacio Valley in the semis. In the bottom half of the bracket, there are several intriguing games. Montgomery, No. 3, and Casa, No. 2, will win first-round games and advance to take on Concord and Las Lomas, respectively. Casa must be wary of 7th-seeded Las Lomas (5-5) out of the Diablo Foothill League. The Vikings most likely will play No. 6 Concord in the quarters to set up a showdown with Casa for the right to take on Petaluma. Hard to make a choice here, but I think Casa may have a slight advantage. Championship game: Petaluma and Casa. Petaluma wins.
Div. III — A tough draw for our three Empire schools. Healdsburg will advance with a hard-earned win over Miramonte, and I give Analy a fighting chance against Acalanes. Sonoma, the last team to get in and the 16th seed, must take on No. 1 Encinal in the opening round. Healdsburg will probably get Novato in the second round. It certainly appears No. 1 Encinal (BSAL) and No. 2 Marin Catholic (MCAL) will have smooth sailing right to the finals. Championship game: Encinal defeats Marin Catholic.
Div. IV — This is a very competitive division. Outside of top-seeded St. Mary’s, there are many intriguing possibilities, expect an upset or two. I like Middletown (No. 4), Cloverdale (No. 5) and Fort Bragg (No. 7) to advance to the second round, but from there it gets pretty doggone tough. Middletown and Cloverdale should meet in the second round – a nice match-up. I’ve seen both.I think Middletown, which beat the Eagles 27-17 in the regular season, might be a tad stronger. Middletown will face St. Mary’s in the semis, with Ferndale (No. 2) and Salesian (No. 3) in the other half of the draw. Championship game: Salesian upsets St. Mary’s.
Div. V — Defending champ St. Vincent is the top seed. Don’t let the regular season ending loss to Cloverdale fool you — the Mustangs are the class of this division. St. Elizabeth (BFL, 5-5) is the second seed off strength of schedule. The only mystery in this division is whether Hoopa Valley, which got a gift into the second round when Anderson Valley decided not to compete, can upset St. Elizabeth. I don’t think so. Championship game: St. Vincent defeats St. Elizabeth.

Division champs:
Division II — Petaluma
Division III — Encinal
Division IV — Salesian
Division V — St. Vincent