The Dribbler took the night off last Saturday and had a few friends over to his shoebox-sized apartment to watch the NFL playoffs.
Among his guests were his cousin, The Fumbler, and a crew of amusing characters, most of them with acronym nicknames -- MC, EZ and TDT, just to name a few.
TDT stands for Touchdown Tim. And if you watched any of the games, you saw plenty of touchdowns, with the four games combining to make for the highest-scoring weekend in NFL playoff history.
The Dribbler was excited to see the wild score-fests, but he enjoys potent offensive efforts on the basketball court even more. Already this season, he has seen Chartiers Valley score 98 points, Uniontown and Vincentian tally 94, and New Castle drop 93. Incidentally, those teams are a combined 49-4.
Do WPIAL teams need to put up gaudy numbers to win games? Certainly not. The Dribbler likes watching players get defensive from time to time. He'd rather not see teams play that "religious defense" ... none.
Bad puns aside, The Dribbler would like to be in attendance at a game this season in which both teams score more than 100 points. Odds are this won't happen, but The Dribbler will keep his fingers crossed.
The Dribbler was more like the Double-Dribbler last week, as a tough performance dropped his season record to 33-20 (.622) in games played through Thursday.
Here are his thoughts on this week's must-see games.
Top boys games
Monessen at Clairton, 7:30 p.m. today -- Monessen stunningly lost its first seven games of the season, but coach Joe Salvino's bunch has rebounded to win their first four Class A Section 3 contests to jump into a first-place tie with Clairton. Monessen will continue to get better, but getting past Bryon Clifford and the Bears will prove to be too tough. Winner: Clairton.
Bethel Park at Upper St. Clair, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday -- Winners of seven in a row, Upper St. Clair has not lost since suffering a humbling 38-17 defeat at Bethel Park on Dec. 18. Chances are the Panthers have been chomping at the bit to get another opportunity to get some payback. Bethel Park's lone loss came by one point against Penn-Trafford. Winner: Upper St. Clair.
Quaker Valley at Sto-Rox, 7:30 Tuesday -- Three games after Quaker Valley coach Mike Mastroianni earned his 350th career win, his Quakers blasted Class AA Section 6 leader Northgate by 33 points last Friday. Sto-Rox edged Quaker Valley by three in the first meeting, but look for the Quakers to even things up. Winner: Quaker Valley.
Other top boys games
(Home team in all CAPS) McKeesport over FOX CHAPEL (7:30 p.m. today); CENTRAL VALLEY over West Allegheny (7:30 p.m. today); NORWIN over Kiski Area (7:30 p.m. Tuesday); SOUTH FAYETTE over Washington (7:30 p.m. Wednesday).
Top girls games
South Park vs. Hopewell, 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Pittsburgh Classic at Ambridge -- A rematch of last year's WPIAL Class AAA final, when Hopewell's Shatori Walker-Kimbrough (35 points, 13 rebounds and 5 blocked shots) had a performance for the ages. Walker-Kimbrough will put forth another big effort in this one, but South Park is simply the better team. Winner: South Park.
Oakland Catholic at North Allegheny, 7:30 p.m. Monday -- It's been more than a month since North Allegheny last lost, a four-point decision at Oakland Catholic. With a win here followed by another against Butler Thursday, North Allegheny will take control of Class AAAA Section 3. The Tigers will lean on its stout defense to do just that. Winner: North Allegheny.
Hopewell at Blackhawk, 8 p.m. Thursday -- One of two undefeated WPIAL girls teams before Thursday (Vincentian is the other), Blackhawk has rolled through its competition, winning all but one of its games by at least 14 points. The Cougars' only test came in a four-point triumph at Hopewell. This will be another close one, but also another tough defeat for the Vikings. Winner: Blackhawk.
Other top girls games
(Home team in all CAPS) SETON-LASALLE over Villa Maria Academy (2:30 p.m. Saturday); HEMPFIELD over Norwin (7:30 p.m. Monday); Elizabeth Forward over WEST MIFFLIN (7:30 p.m. Monday); GREENSBURG SALEM over Uniontown (7:30 p.m. Thursday).