Monday, February 12, 2018

MIAA Basketball Top 25 Poll: Week 9

Mansfield is flying high in the Hockomock Kelly-Rex after a big win over Franklin.   Photo by Eamon Convey.
Our weekly rankings of the best high school basketball teams in Massachusetts, as selected by our team of editors and correspondents.

1. Tech Boston (13-0; Last Week - 1) Bears will look to finish spotless in Boston City League play this week, before having a chance to prove themselves once again against Division 1 powers this weekend in Franklin.

2. Springfield Central (17-0; Last Week - 3) It's a Hason Ward block party, and everyone is invited.

3. Newton North (15-3; Last Week – 4) Aaron Cooley’s production of late is adding a whole new dimension to the Tigers offense.

4. Brockton (16-1; Last Week - 6) Boxers bounced back from their first loss of the season with resounding wins over New Bedford and Marshfield. A trip to Catholic Memorial looms on Friday.

5. Bishop Stang (17-0; Last Week - 7) A heart-pounding 74-70 win over Coyle & Cassidy gave the Spartans the EAC title and has them at a perfect 17-0.

6. Everett (15-1; Last Week - 8) Crimson Tide were a step ahead the entire night on Friday against Lynn English to claim supremacy in the Northeast Conference.

7. Mansfield (16-2; Last Week - 9) Hornets were at their best in a dominating defensive performance versus league-rival Franklin.

8. Franklin (13-2; Last Week - 2) Early-season problems on offense came back to roost on Friday night as the Panthers struggled for every basket in a 57-45 road loss to Mansfield.

9. Catholic Memorial (13-4; Last week – 10) Its become a surprise when the Knights don’t reach 80 points.

10. Lowell (14-2; Last Week - 5) Red Raiders dropped a road contest to an underrated Methuen team on Friday night, but with three of its last four against Lawrence, BC High, and Arlington/Needham, they will quickly have to turn the page.

11. Needham (11-2; Last Week - 7) Impressive fourth quarter performance on Friday night against a Natick team that is tough at home.

12. Lawrence (15-2; Last Week - 15) Lancers avenged an early season loss to Central Catholic by putting 88 on the Raiders on Friday night.

13. Burke (17-1; Last Week - 12) Bulldogs looking to close out the season on a high-note against CASH today before Boston City League tournament begins on Thursday.

14. St. John's Prep (12-4; Last Week - 14) Eagles are playing their best defense of the year at the right time.

15. Arlington (15-1; Last Week -16)
 Incredible run against Middlesex League opponents for John Bowler’s club continued this week as the Spy Ponders captured another Liberty Division title with a win over Lexington on Friday night.

16. Cambridge (14-2; Last Week - 21) Falcons may not have the flare of the last few seasons, but they are certainly on the “avoid” list for everyone in the Division 1 North bracket.

17. St. Mary’s (Lynn) (13-2; Last Week – 18) A Monday night bout with St. John’s Prep presents an interesting challenge for the Spartans’ stingy defense.

18. Marlboro (15-2; Last Week – 22) Panthers have no problem winning in tough environments. A 60-59 road victory over Wachusett shows that Marlboro is ready for postseason play.

19. Central Catholic (13-4; Last Week - 13) Crucial final week for Central Catholic if they hope to have home court to open the state tournament.

20. BC High (10-5; Last Week – 25) After a three-game losing streak, BC High got back on track with a win over Hanover to solidify a spot in the state tournament. The upcoming Comcast Tournament will tell whether or not the Eagles are true contenders.

21. Maynard (15-1; Last Week - 23) Tigers are cruising, but a road test at Cathedral on Monday could cause some problems.

22. Hanover (15-3; Last Week – 19) Credit to the Indians who went out of their way to schedule a tough non-league opponent in BC High.

23. Whitman-Hanson (13-4; Last Week – NR) Panthers jump in to the poll after handily defeating Hingham to even the score atop the Patriot League Keenan Division.

24. Springfield Putnam (14-2; Last Week – NR) Outside of a pair of losses to No. 2 Springfield Central, the Beavers have taken care of business all season long.

25. Apponequet (16-0; Last Week – NR) Apponequet leaps into the poll for the first time this season, as they remained perfect with a pair of wins this week. A potential end of season matchup with Bishop Stang would be one to watch.

First 10 Out: Marshfield (11-2), New Bedford (12-4), Wellesley (12-5), Hingham (14-2), Canton (14-3), Pope John (15-1), Brookline (11-5), Belmont (11-5), Saint Peter-Marian (12-3), Lynn English (14-2) 

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