District 3 girls' basketball brackets set
Two YAIAA schools, Susquehannock and York Catholic, were awarded No. 1 seeds in their respective District 3 tournaments when the final rankings and brackets were released Sunday.
Susquehannock, which advanced to last year's district title game in Class AAA, will this time be atop the bracket in its quest for a return trip to Giant Center. The Warriors advanced to the final last year with a defensive stand against league rival West York in the semifinals. Those two could meet in the quarterfinals at Milton Hershey if they advance past the first round. Palmyra and Bucknell-bound Carly Richardson, who beat Susquehannock in last year's finals, are the No. 2 seed.
York Catholic and Delone Catholic are seeded first and second in the Class AA tournament. The YAIAA Division IV rivals, who met in last year's title game -- won by the Irish -- split their two meetings this season.
Dover is the highest seeded YAIAA team in Class AAAA at third. Here's a breakdown of all four classifications and tournaments:
CLASS AAAATop four (all play home first-round games at 7 p.m., Feb. 18)
1. Manheim Township (22-0, faces Gov. Mifflin-Hershey winner)
2. Cumberland Valley (18-4, faces New Oxford-Harrisburg winner)
3. Dover (18-2, faces Muhlenberg-Exeter Twp. winner)
4. Wilson (15-7, faces CD East-LS winner)
Other qualifying YAIAA teams: 7. Dallastown (16-6, hosts Red Lion, 7 p.m., Feb. 18), 10. Red Lion (14-8, visits Dallastown), 15. New Oxford (13-9, hosts Harrisburg, 7 p.m., Feb. 14).
Crystal ball says: Manheim Township flexed its muscle in last year's district opener, promptly eliminating YAIAA champ Dallastown. The Blue Streaks haven't lost a beat this season. All YAIAA teams are bunched in the bottom half of the bracket, where second-seeded Cumberland Valley presides.
CLASS AAATop four (all play home quarterfinals at 7 p.m., Feb. 19)
1. Susquehannock (18-3, faces Donegal-Northeastern winner)
2. Palmyra (19-3, faces Hamburg Trinity winner)
3. Greencastle Antrim (21-0, faces Gettysburg)
4. Fleetwood (19-2, faces ELCO)
Other qualifying YAIAA teams: 8. West York (15-7, hosts Conrad Weiser, 7 p.m., Feb. 19), 12. Eastern York (15-7, visits Berks Catholic, 7 p.m., Feb. 19), 17. Northeastern (12-10, visits Donegal, 7 p.m., Feb. 14).
Crystal ball says: If Susquehannock and West York can meet in that district semifinal rematch, it would take place Feb. 22 in the quarterfinals at Dallastown. Odds favor that winner getting to the championship game at Giant Center. The same goes for defending champion Palmyra. The Cougars could face unbeaten Greencastle Antrim, which is one of two teams in the top 10 of this class with an opponents' winning percentage below .500.
CLASS AATop four (all play home quarterfinals at 7 p.m., Feb. 21)
1. York Catholic (18-3, faces Bishop McDevitt-Biglerville winner)
2. Delone Catholic (18-3, faces Hanover-Pequea Valley winner)
3. Oley Valley (16-6, faces Annville-Cleona)
4. Camp Hill (16-6, faces Tulpehocken)
Other qualifying YAIAA teams: 7. Hanover (11-11, hosts Pequea Valley, 7 p.m., Feb. 18), 9. Biglerville (11-11, visits Bishop McDevitt, 6 p.m., Feb. 18).
Crystal ball says: Odds favor another York Catholic vs. Delone Catholic district final. Oley Valley, though, nearly prevented Delone from reaching last year's title game. The Squirettes advanced by one in overtime. They would play a semifinal at Warwick should both teams advance to that point.
Top four (all play home quarterfinals at 2 p.m., Feb. 22)
1. Harrisburg Christian (20-1, faces Mount Calvary-Greenwood winner)
2. Lancaster County Christian (18-2, faces Upper Dauphin-Veritas Academy winner)
3. Halifax (16-5, faces Harrisburg Academy-New Hope winner)
4. Christian School of York (15-5, faces Steel-High or Antietam)
Other qualifying area teams: 11. New Hope Academy (7-8, opens at Harrisburg Academy, 7 p.m., Feb. 19)
Crystal ball says: Defending champion Steel-High is seeded fifth and isn't the same team that ran roughshod over the district last year. The obvious part is 3,000-point career scorer Malia Tate-DeFreitas is now in college at Hampton. However, the Rollers enter this tournament tested more than anyone.
*Note, games conducted for league tournaments or after Friday for the regular season did not count for district seeding or qualification.