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Colorado Preps Pick'em: Playoffs Week 1

Each week we'll take three intriguing matchups and put our knowledge to the test with some predictions. If you think your team's game is one of the best on the schedule, let us know in the comments or on Twitter @CParishESPNHS and we'll put it up for debate.

(Ranks based on this week's state rankings)

Chaparral (6-3) vs. Westminster (6-3)

Think the Wolverines were motivated following a frustrating 10-9 loss to ThunderRidge? Chaparral beat its next three opponents by a 117-0 margin and have now posted five shutouts this season. The defense has been stellar; it's the offense that needs to stay consistent. Senior Chris Page has more than 1,000 rushing yards and 10 scores, but he'll need to have a big game against Westminster. Junior Patrick Wilson, a tough, hard-nosed runner, has 1,310 yards and 16 scores this year. PREDICTION: Westminster 24, Chaparral 20

Fairview (5-4) vs. Regis Jesuit (5-4)

OK, so we've documented the puzzling struggles of Regis this season. After opening the year at No. 3 in our ranks, Regis struggled to stay above .500 all season long. But the playoffs are where you make your mark, and the record no longer matters; win and you advance. Once QB Eystin Salum went down with an injury, the Raiders struggled with a shift in offensive philsophy, but senior RB Jordan Jungers has been very effective at RB. Fairview, meanwhile, is a sturdy 5-1 at home but 0-3 on the road, which could be problematic. Senior QB Michael McVenes is effective when he needs to throw, but the Knights are a grinding, clock management team that doesn't score much and relies on defense. That won't fly against Regis. PREDICTION: Regis 28, Fairview 17

Cherokee Trail (6-3) vs. Fountain-Fort Carson (7-2)

Cherokee Trail is probably better than its 6-3 record implies, but a tough schedule coupled with some injury problems, particularly to star Thomas Singleton, led to a few tough losses. Things won't get easier from here. Fountain-Fort Carson is a good team that lost twice back-to-back in the middle of the season but has since reeled off four straight victories. Senior Kevin Davis has been stellar defensively, and he'll need to be in order to slow down Singleton and pressure the star QB into making bad decisions. PREDICTION: Cherokee Trail 24, Fountain-Fort Carson 21

Previous Record: 17-11