Talented Sacramento and battle-tested De La Salle of Concord re-join the list of California’s elite boys basketball teams in our latest weekly State 20 rankings. For the girls, Bishop O’Dowd is up two more spots while Vista Murrieta comes back in to represent the Inland Empire.
Check below for this week’s new list of the State Top 20 boys and girls basketball rankings.
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The recent results of showcase games around the state clearly shows there are five elite teams in California this season — defending NorCal Open Division champion Bishop O’Dowd of Oakland, defending SoCal Open Division champ Mater Dei of Santa Ana, L.A. City Section Open Division favorite Fairfax of Los Angeles, defending CIF Division IV state champ Bishop Montgomery of Torrance and a major CIFSS Open Division title contender — Sierra Canyon of Chatsworth.
Centennial of Corona stumbled a bit early, but still looms as a major factor in the CIFSS Open Division and is looking to close out its league season strong, as is Damien of La Verne. The latter plays in the tough Baseline league with Chino Hills and Etiwanda and will look to sweep those two clubs in home games this week in an effort to join the conversation with the “Big 5.”
It may look like Sierra Canyon is getting penalized harshly for a tough road loss in this week’s rankings, but from a national perspective it’s not at all. The young Trailblazers still have the resume of a national top 25 team, but for now must remain behind Fairfax because of the head-to-head loss.
Just like Sierra Canyon lost in a hostile environment, the Lions are going to have to hit the road this week to face a state top five and national top 25 foe — in this case No. 2 Mater Dei in one of the featured games of the 2015 Nike Extravaganza.
If last weekend and past Extravaganzas are any indication, it won’t be an easy environment for Fairfax to win in.
NEW BOYS BASKETBALL
TOP 20 OVERALL RANKINGS
(Compiled by Ronnie Flores; updated through games played Saturday, Feb. 1; previous rating in parentheses)
1. (1) BISHOP O’DOWD (OAKLAND) 15-3
2. (3) MATER DEI (SANTA ANA) 19-3
3. (4) BISHOP MONTGOMERY (TORRANCE) 23-1
4. (5) FAIRFAX (LOS ANGELES) 23-0
5. (2) SIERRA CANYON (CHATSWORTH) 16-2
6. (7) CENTENNIAL (CORONA) 16-4
7. (10) DAMIEN (LA VERNE) 20-2
8. (8) CATHEDRAL (LOS ANGELES)
9. (9) LONG BEACH POLY (LONG BEACH) 18-3
10. (6) REDONDO UNION (REDONDO BEACH) 17-5
11. (11) PRICE (LOS ANGELES) 19-4
12. (12) CHINO HILLS 16-4*
13. (13) MOREAU CATHOLIC (HAYWARD) 15-5
14. (14) ETIWANDA 16-6
15. (15) CAMPOLINDO (MORAGA) 18-2
16. (17) LUTHERAN (ORANGE) 19-3
17. (19) MONTE VISTA (DANVILLE) 18-2
18. (20) FOLSOM 20-3
19. (NR) SACRAMENTO 18-4
20. (NR) DE LA SALLE (CONCORD) 18-2
*Forfeit losses not included.
Dropped Out: Previous No. 16 Drake (San Anselmo); No. 18 St. Francis (Mountain View).
NEW GIRLS BASKETBALL
TOP 20 OVERALL RANKINGS
As is evidenced by the fact there was no movement in the first 14 spots of this week’s State 20 rankings, this is the time of the year when most of the top teams are making easy work of league opponents.
There are some exceptions to that rule, however, such as those teams in the highly-competitive West Catholic Athletic League, which is still up for grabs.
Fifth-ranked St. Ignatius of San Francisco would appear to be in the driver’s seat but the Wildcats will get tested by both state-ranked Archbishop Mitty and Sacred Heart Cathedral. No. 4 Chaminade and No. 17 Alemany also still have to play again in the Mission League.
(Compiled by Harold Abend; updated through games played Saturday, Feb. 1; previous rating in parentheses)
1. (1) MATER DEI (SANTA ANA) 21-1
2. (2) ST. MARY’S (STOCKTON) 21-1
3. (3) LONG BEACH POLY (LONG BEACH)
4. (4) CHAMINADE (WEST HILLS) 18-2
5. (5) ST. IGNATIUS (SAN FRANCISCO) 16-3
6. (6) MIRAMONTE (ORINDA) 19-2
7. (7) PINEWOOD (LOS ALTOS HILLS) 15-2
8. (8) SIERRA CANYON (CHATSWORTH) 16-4
9. (9) OAKS CHRISTIAN (WESTLAKE VILLAGE) 16-5
10. (10) VANDEN (FAIRFIELD) 19-2
11. (11) CARONDELET (CONCORD) 17-2
12. (12) ARCHBISHOP MITTY (SAN JOSE) 15-3
13. (13) SALESIAN (RICHMOND) 21-2
14. (14) GARCES (BAKERSFIELD) 19-1
15. (17) BISHOP O’DOWD (OAKLAND) 13-7
16. (18) BREA OLINDA (BREA) 19-2
17. (16) BISHOP ALEMANY (MISSION HILLS) 17-5
18. (19) NARBONNE (HARBOR CITY) 16-4*
19. (20) SACRED HEART CATHEDRAL (SAN FRANCISCO) 10-9
20. (NR) VISTA MURRIETA (MURRIETA) 17-6
*Forfeit wins or losses not included.
Dropped Out: Previous No. 15 Redondo Union (Redondo Beach).
Mark Tennis & Paul Muyskens contributed to this report.
Harold Abend is the associate editor of CalHiSports.com and the vice president of the California Prep Sportswriters Association. He can be reached at email@example.com. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @HaroldAbend