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ESPN Boston boys' hoops Top 25

3/20/2015

1. Catholic Memorial (24-2): Knights make history here after knocking off two-time defending champ Putnam in the Division 1 State Final, to finish as the top team in the land. Making their first No. 1 appearance in our poll's history, they're also just the second Catholic Conference team to finish atop the final poll, and first Eastern Mass team in four years to do it.

2. Putnam (22-4): For the first time since February 2013, the Beavers are in a position other than No. 1 in our statewide poll. With Ty Nichols and Jonathan Garcia set to graduate, some are wondering if this is the end of an historic era for the Beavers, who won back-to-back state titles in 2012-13 and 2013-14.

3. Cambridge (21-3): Falcons earned their first Division 1 North title since 2007, and held a seven-point lead on CM in the fourth quarter of the Eastern Mass final before faltering. While they graduate Isaiah McLeod, who led the state in scoring average (27.6 ppg),we're excited to see what this team looks like next year with sophomore Jakigh Dottin taking the reins.

4. Danvers (27-0): What the Falcons have done since John Walsh took over in 2010 has been nothing short of remarkable. After beating Marlborough for the D2 state title last weekend, the Falcons are now 105-19 in five seasons under his watch, with three state titles.

5. St. John's Prep (18-5): Eagles lived up to expectations in year two of the John Dullea era, reaching the Division 1 North Final. And with a core of talented underclassmen expected back in the fold next year, they'll likely be a favorite in 2015-16.

6. Mansfield (23-3): Once again, Hornets were ousted from the Division 1 South tournament by their nemesis CM, falling in a thrilling district final. There are big shoes to fill in two of their all-time greats, Ryan Boulter and Mike Boen, but this is a program built for the long haul.

7. Newton North (22-3): Tigers give a tearful goodbye to one of their all-time greats, Tommy Mobley, after reaching their ninth D1 South semifinal in 10 seasons. But expect the Tigers to be back in the thick of it again, with promising freshman guard Ethan Wright in the fold.

8. Marlborough (21-4): Panthers' 2014-15 season was historic for both the program, making their first state final in school history on the heels of a 4-16 campaign; and for second-year coach Bryan Riley, who is one of just three Central Mass coaches to win a district title as both a player and coach. Fab frosh Chris Doherty says he's coming back next year, giving them all five starters back, so expect the Panthers to be a favorite in D2.

9. Arlington (22-2): Spy Ponders earned their first Middlesex League title in school history, and rode Syracuse soccer commit Miles Robinson to unprecedented postseason success. John Bowler is on the short list of "Coach of the Year" candidates for his rebuilding job.

10. Westford Academy (22-3): High watermark year for the Grey Ghosts, captured the No. 1 seed in Division 1 Central, and took out perennial heavyweight St. John's of Shrewsbury to capture the district title, before falling to state runner-up Putnam in the D1 semifinals.

11. Old Rochester (23-3): Steve Carvalho's rebuilding job is complete, after the Bulldogs captured their first D3 state title in school history. With many key underclassmen expected back in the fold, including talented freshman Noah Fernandes, we're looking at potentially a 2-3 year window of state title contention.

12. Hamilton-Wenham (25-0): Generals blew away the field, capped with a win over Sutton in the D4 title game, to earn long-time coach Doug Hoak his first state title. Let it be known, with this crop of talent led by sophomore Marcus Zegarowski, this team would have hung around in higher divisions.

13. St. John's (Shrewsbury) (19-4): Despite a late-season funk, the Pioneers turned it on for the playoffs, as usual, knocking off Franklin in a thrilling D1 Central semifinal before falling to Westford in the final.

14. Bishop Feehan (19-6): Shamrocks came into the field as favorites, and lived up to expectations as they captured the D2 South title with a last-second victory over Oliver Ames, before falling to state champion Danvers in the Eastern Mass final at TD Garden.

15. Everett (16-7): Crimson Tide silenced critics in the postseason with their run to the D1 North semifinals, where they lost to rival St. John's Prep. This is another squad that should have high expectations in 2015-16, with a promising core of underclassmen expected back.

16. Andover (17-6): This was the Golden Warriors' best shot in a while, and they had to survive a tough road, outlasting Lawrence in double-overtime before falling to sectional champ Cambridge in a D1 North semifinal.

17. Amherst (20-3): Hurricanes were explosive in the first few rounds of D1 West play before falling to defending champ Putnam in the district final. Expect high-flying junior Davonte McCall to contend for "Mr. Basketball" next season.

18. Tewksbury (20-5): Redmen experienced a season for the ages, going as deep as any squad ever did, despite limited deficiencies in the size department. Expect them to be a D2 contender again next season with MVC Co-MVP Nate Tenaglia back in the field.

19. Brighton (20-5): In what felt like a bridge year, the Tigers were one win away from returning to the Tsongas Center for the third time in four years. Another squad that should have high expectations next season, even with the graduation of big man Jason Jones.

20. Franklin (18-4): Panthers can't catch a break, getting ousted from the D1 Central tournament by St. John's for the second season in a row. But this is a program marked by consistency, which means we can expect them right back here next year.

21. Lynn English (17-4): Runnin' Bulldogs once again had high expectations heading into the D1 North tournament, only to make an early exit, losing in the quarterfinals to Everett.

22. Taunton (18-5): Tigers were a surprise in the D1 South field, taking down a talented Quincy squad to reach the D1 South semifinals before falling to Hockomock rival Mansfield.

23. Chicopee (18-4):Pacers were one of the favorites in the D1 West field, but couldn't win the rubber match with Amherst in the semifinals, ending a season of high expectations.

24. Sutton (22-4): Sammies blew away the Central and West fields before falling to juggernaut Hamilton-Wenham in the D4 State Final.

25. Lawrence (16-6): After a rocky start, the Lancers got hot in the second half of the season, riding the momentum all the way into a classic double-overtime loss to Andover in the D1 North quarterfinals.

Last 10 out: Belmont (16-8), East Boston (14-6), Hoosac Valley, Oliver Ames (19-4), Leominster (17-5), Newton South (14-8), Pentucket (17-6), Quincy (19-5), Sandwich (21-2), South Hadley (15-9), Hoosac Valley (17-8).