Below is our top 25 MIAA basketball poll, as selected by our panel of staff writers and correspondents. (Updated 2/23)
Team Name Record Last Week Notes 1. Springfield Putnam (21-0) 1 The Beavers earned the top seed in the Division 1 West tournament. With a first round bye, they'll be waiting for the winner of Leominster/Holyoke on Friday night. 2. New Mission (18-2) 2 The Titans have asserted themselves as the favorite in the Division 2 tournament. With the way the bracket ended up, the Titans wouldn't see a ranked opponent until the South semifinals or finals. 3. Catholic Memorial (19-1) 3 The Knights finished as the second seed in Division 1 South, but they'll have a tough road to the South finals - with Mansfield, BC High, Wellesley, Taunton, and Brookline all on their side of the bracket. 4. St. John's Prep (16-4) 11 The Eagles see a considerable jump in the poll after knocking off Everett and Andover to win the IAABO Board 130 Classic. On Friday night they'll take on the winner of Chelmsford/Lowell. 5. Andover (16-4) NR Dave Fazio's Golden Warriors couldn't be playing much better heading into the tournament, especially after blowing out Everett and nearly beating St. John's Prep. Their opening round game will be against Billerica on Tuesday. 6. Newton North (17-3) 5 With an opening round bye, Tommy Mobley and the Tigers will host Braintree on Wednesday night. North won both matchups this season, 66-56 and 66-60, respectively. 7. Central Catholic (17-5) 9 The Red Raiders will host 10-10 Charlestown in their opening round game on Tuesday night. With a win, they would play the winner of Cambridge/Waltham. 8. Mansfield (20-2) 8 The Hornets narrowly missed being the top seed in the D1 South tournament, but they still were able to get a bye for the preliminary round. They'll see the winner of Attleboro and Weymouth in the first round. 9. Cambridge (15-5) 7 The Falcons may very well be the darkhorse pick in Division 1 North, which certainly speaks to the number of good teams in their bracket. They have Central and St. John's Prep on their side of the bracket, but given their challenging regular season schedule, Cambridge should be ready. 10. St. Peter-Marian (16-5) 10 The Guardians won the Worcester City Championship to conclude the regular season this past week. SPM hasn't won districts since they won D2 in 1996, is this year finally the year they take the crown in D1 Central? 11. Bishop Feehan (19-1) 12 The Shamrocks will certainly be considered the favorite in the Division 2 South tournament, especially seeing as the only other ranked team in the field is fourth-seeded Dorchester, whom Feehan would see until at least the D2 South semis. 12. North Quincy (20-1) 4 In perhaps their biggest game of the regular season, North Quincy came up just short of rival Quincy. Whether a simple bump in the road or a sign of a weak schedule, we'll find out more about the Red Raiders soon enough -- especially if they see Quincy in the quarterfinals on Wednesday. 13. Lynn English (14-6) 13 The Bulldogs picked up a much needed victory over Everett at the IAABO Board 130 Classic. If they can get past a tough Lexington team on Tuesday, it's likely they woul need to beat a red hot Andover squad to get to the North semifinals. 14. St. John's (Shrewsbury) (18-4) 16 It's been quite some time since the Pioneers weren't considered the sure-shot favorite in Division 1 Central, but given the emergence of St. Peter-Marian, the Pioneers will certainly be playing with something to prove on Thursday against the winner of Doherty and Lincoln-Sudbury. 15. Everett (16-4) 8 The Crimson Tide certainly took a couple of steps backward last week, which should be a bit of a concern heading into the tournament. Coming off a blowout loss to Andover and a loss in the consolation game of the IAABO Board 130 Classic, they'll host league foe Malden on Tuesday. 16. BC High (13-7) 14 The Eagles, at 13-7, picked up a relatively low 10-seed in the D1 South tourney. They'll have perhaps the toughest opening playoff game of any ranked team - they'll be on the road to face No. 20 Wellesley on Wednesday. 17. Salem (16-4) 15 The Witches won't play again until Friday night because of a bye on the preliminary round, but they'll be hosting the winner of Masconomet and Brighton. With the way the bracket ended up in D2 North, Salem wouldn't see top-seeded favorite New Mission until the sectional championship game. 18. Dorchester (15-4) 17 With Khail Newson, Dean Lee, and Markus Neale, the Bears have perhaps the best backcourt in the D2 South tournament. Dorchester has the talent to make a deep run, we'll find out how likely that is on Wednesday night when they face off with Silver Lake. 19. Danvers (17-3) 18 Many of the Falcons' current star players watched in awe the past two years as Danvers won back-to-back Division 3 state championships. Now it's their turn, John Walsh's team has the talent to knock off fellow tourney favorites Salem and New Mission. 20. Wellesley (15-5) 21 The Raiders will host No. 16 BC High in their first round tourney game on Wednesday night. Wellesley's inside-out duo of Aidan James and sharpshooting big man Ryan Noel is one of the best tandems in Eastern Mass. 21. Fitchburg (17-3) NR Jack Scott's Red Raiders finished the regular season on the ultimate high note, beating St. John's to finish the year at 17-3. The top seed in the D1 Central tournament, Fitchburg will play host Thursday night to the winner of Acton-Boxboro and Worcester South. 22. Franklin (16-6) NR The Panthers inserted their name as a potential dark horse in the Division 1 Central tournament after winning the championship at the Comcast Tournament behind an MVP performance from Chris Rodgers. A five-seed, they'll head to fourth-seeded Wachusett on Thursday night. 23. Lynn Classical (14-8) NR The Rams made quite a statement in the final week of the season, knocking off No. 13 Lynn English and No. 17 Salem in succession. Now with a preliminary round bye in the tourney, they'll host Gloucester on Wednesday. 24. Northampton (16-4) 22 The Blue Devils will host 10-10 Cathedral in the opening round of the Division 1 West tournament on Friday night. Northampton nearly upended Putnam in a 65-51 thriller back in January, round two would have to wait until the Division 1 West finals. 25. Leominster (16-4) 23 Many felt Leominster was somewhat slighted by being given the fifth seed through the Walker System in the Western Mass., so expect the Blue Devils to play with something to prove in their opening game against a tough Holyoke squad on Friday night.
- Long Day's Night
- John Farrell didn't like much of what he saw as the Sox dropped a twinbill.
- Made To Last
- The B's rallied to force OT, then outlasted the Lightning in the shootout.
- Raring To Go
- Avery Bradley is eager to get back on the court, no matter the Celtics' record.
- One Step Closer
- BU and Northeastern advanced in their respective conference tournaments.
- A Dream Come True
- Twelve-year-old Louis Corbett had his dream of seeing the Celtics come true.
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