NCS semifinal predictions

Just thought I’d let Fanatico have his/her say and just I suspected, those predictions came out a full 24 hours ahead of kickoff time, They are available for your consumption now under the post labeled “Rankings for Nov. 10.”

Corner Kicks, on the other hand, needs more time. One does not rush to judgment on such important matters. While it is true that there may be quite a few million folks in all corners of the world who will not give a diddly about what occurs on the pitches of Sonoma County Wednesday, there are quite a few around here who do care. Therefore, Corner Kicks must mull over his decisions.

Consulting with various coaches, the weather man and the local bagboy at Safeways down the street are all in order.

OK, it is time, like them or not here are the eight winners tonight:

DIVISION I

BOYS

(1) Marin Catholic (23-2-2) at (5) Elsie Allen (13-8-2), 7 p.m.
PREDICTION: Let’s give the Lobos a little love here. They are in the semifinals and a lot of teams with more successful programs in the past can’t say that. And tonight there is only one way Elsie Allen can win: it has to play 80 minutes of all-out, aggressive, in-your-face soccer. Why? MC is big, they are strong and they are talented. Can Elsie dominate the midfield at home? We’ll see, but…
Marin Catholic 3, Elsie Allen 1
Final: Marin Catholic 3, Elsie Allen 1

 (11) Casa Grande (14-8-2) at (2) Santa Rosa (19-3-2), 7 p.m.
PREDICTION: It took the Panthers the better part of the season to convince Corner Kicks that they were for real. Now the Gauchos want to do that in a single game, a win over Windsor. Not gonna happen. Sorry, Gauchos.
Santa Rosa 3, Casa Grande 1
Final: Santa Rosa 3, Casa Grande 2

GIRLS

(4) Santa Rosa (13-4-2) at (1) Montgomery (20-2-1), 7 p.m.
PREDICTION: Someone commented after the Rosa win over Windsor that Corner Kicks doesn’t give defense enough credit. Au contrair…in the past I have told anyone who will listen that I consider the goal-scorers the least important players on the pitch. It all starts in the back. Now, does Rosa have enough to stop the talented Vikings? I think they’ll come very, very close, but…
Montgomery 2, Santa Rosa 1, OT
Final: Montgomery 2, Santa Rosa 0

(3) Maria Carrillo (18-2-1) at (2) Casa Grande (14-2-3), 7 p.m.
PREDICTION: You could dissect this match a thousand different ways. But it’ll come down to two players: Puma midfielder Carli Johnson and Gaucho goalie Ashley Luis. If Vinnie & Co. figure out a way to neutralize Johnson, the Gauchos win; if the Pumas face Luis on a bad night, MC wins. This game will probably be better than the finals on Saturday night. The Gauchos aren’t two-time defending champs because they are lucky.
Casa Grande 2, Maria Carrillo 0
Final: Casa Grande 2, Maria Carrillo 0

DIVISION III

BOYS

(1) Marin Academy (16-3-1) at (4) Calistoga (17-2-0), 7 p.m.
Note: Site of game is Napa County Fairgrounds
PREDICTION: This is a terrible venue and we could be in for a damp night which could make the pitch even worse. There is no doubt that MA is the better team in the long haul, but this is one game and I just have a funny feeling here. I see this as the major upset of the night.
Calistoga 3, Marin Academy 2
Final: Calistoga 3, Marin Academy 1

(2) Branson (13-5-5) at (3) Anderson Valley (19-1-0), 7 p.m.
Note: Site of game is Mendocino County Fairgrounds
PREDICTION: You know that Branson does not want to make this trip, no way, no how. But some how it will prevail and it just might go to PKs.
Branson 2, Anderson Valley 1
Final: Branson 4, Anderson Valley 2

GIRLS

(1) Sonoma Academy (17-2-0) vs. (12) Clear Lake (10-10-4), 5 p.m.
Note: Site of game is Santa Rosa High
PREDICTION: This really is the only easy selection of the evening. I mean, look at the losses on the Clear Lake side of the ledger. SA hasn’t lost 10 games in three years, has it? Sorry, Clear Lake, it was fun while it lasted…
Sonoma Academy 5, Clear Lake 0
Final: Sonoma Academy 8, Clear Lake 0

(2) St. Vincent (15-1-0) vs. (3) Middletown (17-1-0), 7 p.m.
Note: Site of game is Rancho Cotate High
PREDICTION: I listed Middletown as a “Darkhorse” and I really only did that cause it was the only choice. St. Vincent might have a tussle on its hands for awhile, but it’ll only be a short while. We are headed for a repeat finale of last season.
St. Vincent 4, Middletown 1
Final: St. Vincent 2, Middletown 0