YAIAA girls' basketball power rankings, Feb. 11
Will the girls' tournament, which kicks off Saturday, have similar drama in store? We'll see. For now, here's one more edition of our girls' basketball power rankings.
Last week's rankings here.
1. Red Lion (1) -- Once again, the Lions (21-1) will be a No. 1 seed in the YAIAA tournament. They reached the final last year, only to lose to York Catholic. You have to like Red Lion's chances to get back there and possibly finish the job this time, now equipped with a team capable of outscoring opponents if their blitzing defense somehow falters. As if the Lions players needed any extra incentive, they have this: their coach, Don Dimoff, is three wins shy of 400 for his career, which means he could hit the mark with a win in the YAIAA title game.
2. York Catholic (3) --The Fighting Irish (20-2) are riding high into the league tournament, having toppled rival Delone Catholic on Tuesday to grab an outright Division IV title. Now York Catholic will turn its attention toward trying to defend its YAIAA tournament crown. First up: Dallastown on Saturday night at Dover high school. The Irish beat the Wildcats very early in the season, but Dallastown is a much-improved team from then. Still, you have to like the way York Catholic is playing, teaming excellent defense (32.8 ppg allowed) with a versatile offense.
3. Delone Catholic (2) -- What better way for the Squirettes to move forward from Tuesday's loss than to beat their rivals in a YAIAA semifinal Wednesday? That could happen, but first Delone (19-3) needs to get past West York on Saturday night, in a rematch of a game the Squirettes won two weekends ago. Delone did not shoot the ball well against the Irish, and I'm sure coach Gerry Eckenrode will be eager to see players like Bethany Ball, Abbey Sponseller and Maria Photiades get back on track Saturday. Of course, we know what we're going to get from star Sierra Moore, a newly crowned McDonald's All-American.
4. Eastern York (4) -- Sixteen in a row and counting for the Golden Knights (19-3). But Eastern's schedule is about to get a lot harder. First up, a YAIAA tournament quarterfinal with Dover on Saturday night. If Eastern wins that, it'll likely end up staring at a semifinal matchup with Red Lion -- not exactly an enviable assignment. And whenever their YAIAA tournament bid ends, the Knights can look forward to a tricky road matchup with West York -- which beat Eastern early this season -- in the opening round of the District 3 playoffs. The district power rankings were not kind to Eastern, which had to settle for No. 9 seed despite its gaudy record.
5. West York (5) -- What will the Bulldogs (17-5) have learned from their previous loss to Delone that could help them Saturday? They started off well that game, leading by as much as eight in the first half. West York was done in by a series of Delone Catholic runs and some hot shooting. Still, the fact that the Bulldogs hung around before that fourth quarter should give them at some confidence that they can get the job done. And if the Squirettes' shots suddenly stop falling Saturday, West York has to be ready to pounce.
In the hunt (alphabetical order): Dallastown (12-10), Dover (18-3), Kennard-Dale (12-10), Susquehannock (14-8)