Zumiez (NASDAQ:ZUMZ) was not able to be one of the outliers in the third quarter, given fairly lackluster third-quarter results.

Third-quarter net income decreased 16% to $6.8 million, or $0.23 per share. While Zumiez was able to report an increase in sales, this is not the kind of sales increase that growth-oriented investors have expected from Zumiez; revenue increased 7.9% to $112.2 million, and same-store sales dropped 5.8% in the quarter (versus a 13.2% increase this time last year).

Not surprisingly, Zumiez also lowered its sales and earnings expectations for the remainder of 2008. It says it expects earnings of $0.52 per share to $0.57 per share for all of 2008; back in August Zumiez guided for earnings of $0.80 per share to $0.82 per share (and that was lowered guidance from previous expectations).

This comes as no surprise to me; in August I suggested that interested investors wait on Zumiez, since the outlook looked pretty bleak. And so it is; Zumiez is hardly alone. Rival Pacific Sunwear (NASDAQ:PSUN) is still losing money, and Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF) lost its shirt in the third quarter.

When it comes to the board sports niche, I remain far more bullish on Volcom (NASDAQ:VLCM), which, like Zumiez, is a Motley Fool Hidden Gems pick. I like Volcom despite the fact that it supplies merchandise to both Zumiez and Pacific Sunwear (two lagging customers are hardly a great state of affairs). On a qualitative level, though, I'd say the care and attention Volcom pays to being an authentic brand for its teen clientele -- it also dabbles in music, sports events, and such -- is a differentiator that shouldn't be underestimated when looking at its value at the moment.

As for Zumiez, I'm just not a big fan at the moment, even though the stock may look like a steal, trading at 8 times trailing earnings. Granted, some of its problem is shared, macroeconomic angst, plain and simple, since 2008 is stinking for retailers.

Still, given the numerous times Zumiez has slashed its guidance this year and the increasingly lethargic quarterly revenue growth in recent times (after all, by comparison, Volcom's revenue growth was still an impressive 23% in its third-quarter results), I'd say there's no hurry to rush into Zumiez stock. Investors should take a wait-and-see attitude on that one -- that is, wait and see when teen customers really seem to be returning.

Zumiez and Volcom are Motley Fool Hidden Gems picks. Pacific Sunwear of California is a Motley Fool Hidden Gems Pay Dirt recommendation. Pacific Sunwear of California is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.

Alyce Lomax does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. The Fool has a disclosure policy.