Top teams jockey for position as others drop out

Updated: January 30, 2009, 10:58 AM ET
ESPNRISE.com

Editor's note: The ESPN RISE FAB 50 boys' basketball rankings are compiled by Christopher Lawlor, Ronnie Flores, Ryan Canner-O'Mealy and Doug Huff. They will be released each Tuesday throughout the season.

Click here for regional rankings.

The first major shakedown of the ESPN RISE FAB 50 boys' basketball rankings has seven teams dropping out. This is the time of the season when teams are making moves in their conferences, leagues, regions or districts.

Some schools are even finishing their regular season schedules. Most states will start their postseasons in late February, culminating with state championships in March. There are still a few key events left on the national docket.

No. 13 Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) zooms up 30 spots in the FAB 50 rankings after beating longtime rival No. 15 DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.), 86-76. The teams have one regular season meeting left and could meet again in the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference playoffs and at the 49th Alhambra Catholic Invitational Tournament in late March in Frostburg, Md.

No. 33 Norcross (Ga.), the two-time Georgia Class 5A champion and No. 38 Petersburg (Va.), Virginia's top-ranked Class AAA team, highlight the newcomers.

Previous-No. 15 Rainier Beach (Seattle) dropped three games last week and are out of the rankings. Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.,), a heavy favorite in the preseason rankings, has fallen by the wayside after a dogged disappointment. The Railsplitters are off this week but still have a few key games left in the regular season, notably against No. 5 St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.) on ESPNU at the Nike Super Six on Feb. 13. They still have the Brooklyn Borough and New York City Public School Athletic League tournaments remaining. So, redemption is still possible.

The top four teams continue their winning ways but expect a shake-up on Feb. 6 when top-ranked Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) hosts No. 3 St. Benedict's (Newark, N.J.) at the Nike Extravaganza on ESPNU. Two days earlier (Feb. 4), St. Benedict's plays St. Patrick at the Rutgers Athletic Center in Piscataway. A week later (on Feb. 13 and 14) St. Patrick plays Lincoln and No. 2 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) on back to back days.

Three-point play

Game Ball: Ian Hummer of No. 13 Gonzaga sparkled on both ends of the floor and changed the outcome of a key game against No. 15 DeMatha, earning him national player of the week honors. Hummer, a 6-foot-7, 220-pound forward, had 32 points (6 of 6 free throws), 15 rebounds and three blocked shots in n 86-76 victory over DeMatha. Hummer's slam dunk helped ignite the win. In two games, he totaled 41 points (9 of 10 free throws), 27 rebounds and six blocks. For the season, Hummer averages 15.2 points, 11.3 rebounds and 2.3 blocks on a balanced team.

The wins vaulted the Purple Eagles into first place of the ultra-competitive Washington Catholic Athletic Conference. The DeMatha rematch is Feb. 20, closing out the regular season.

Hummer, who has a 3.5 grade-point average at a top-notch academic school and will attend Princeton, has tremendous bloodlines. His father, Ed, played on Princeton's Final Four team in 1965 and his uncle, John, played for the Tigers and in the NBA.

Game of the week: Florida's District 2-2A regular season championship is on the line when No. 48 Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville) hosts Providence Day (Jacksonville) Thursday on the campus of Edward Waters College AT 7:30 p.m. ET. Providence is undefeated in district play, including a 72-62 victory over ACD on Dec. 12. Providence shot 44 free throws in the contest and is led by Davidson-bound guard J.P. Kuhlman and 6-foot-8 sophomore Wayne Martin. The teams will likely meet again in next month's district and Class 2A regional tournaments. ACD has won six straight since an exhaustive holiday tournament schedule.

Prime Time viewing: A tripleheader featuring five Philadelphia-area teams comprises the Friday's Prime Time Shootout at Villanova University Pavilion. The lineup includes: Academy of New Church (Bryn Athyn, Pa.)-Bishop McNamara (Forestville, Md.), 6 p.m. ET; Penn Wood (Lansdowne, Pa.)-No. 31 Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia), 7:30; and No. 30 Chester (Pa.)-Roman Catholic (Philadelphia), 8. The night's top-rated player is 6-foot-3 guard Maalik Wayns of Roman Catholic, a Villanova recruit and ESPNU 100 player.

The two-day event continues Saturday at 12:30 p.m. when Our Savior New American (Centereach, N.Y.) plays North Guilford (N.C.) in the first of six contests. The top game of the day is No. 28 Jamesville-Dewitt (Dewitt, N.Y.), New York State's Class A defending champions, against North Catholic (Philadelphia) at 8 p.m. Rakeem Christmas, a sophomore center, paces North Catholic, while Syracuse-bound guard Brandon Triche is J-D's top gun.

Records are through Jan. 25.

Rankings: Preseason / Week 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 15 / 14 / 16 / 17 / 18 / 19 / 20 / 21 / Final

ESPN RISE FAB 50 BOYS' BASKETBALL RANKINGS: WEEK 12
Rank Team Record Previous Note
1 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) 20-0 1 The Monarchs downed Whitney Young (Chicago), 86-61, at the Spaulding Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass. North Carolina-recruit Travis Wear led the way with 18 points while twin Travis added 18. Back home, St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.) was no match in a 70-23 victory. Travis Wear did not play last Friday (flu-like symptoms) but it didn't matter as they beat Orange Lutheran, 102-77. David picked up the slack with 26 points and 11 rebounds.
2 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) 25-0 2 The Warriors rattled off four wins, but none more impressive than crushing previous-No. 8 Christ School (Arden, N.C.), 75-58. A key 17-0 run bridging the two halves knocked Christ School from the ranks of unbeatens. Lamont "MoMo" Jones scored 34, sinking 12 of 14 shots, and Oklahoma-bound center Tiny Gallon scored nine points but brought down 12 rebounds. The Warriors play three games this week, capped by Saturday's game at William Fleming (Salem, Va.).
3 St. Benedict's (Newark, N.J.) 19-0 3 St. Benedict's crushed Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 89-53, at the Newark National Invitational at the Prudential Center in Newark. Sophomore Myck Kabongo scored 23 points (on 9 of 14 shooting); earning his team's Most Valuable Player. The Gray Bees needed overtime to stop Bishop McNamara (Forestville, Md.), 80-70, at the Hoop Group Lehigh Hoopfest in Allentown, Pa. Lamar Patterson struck for 21 points. Also defeated previous-No. 37 Wheeler (Marietta, Ga.), 77-67, at the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass. Thompson (20 points, 13 rebounds) and Pittsburgh-bound forward Patterson (19, 13) teamed for 39 points and 26 rebounds.
4 Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.) 21-0 4 The Pilots continue to impress as they recorded two victories, including 66-62 decision over Wayne (Huber Heights, Ohio) at the Flyin' to the Hoop in Kettering, Ohio. EA SPORTS Mr. Basketball USA candidate Avery Bradley was named tournament MVP, closing with 23 points and five boards. The Pilots returned to the Midwest Saturday and defeated Westbury Christian (Houston), 82-48, as Illinois recruit D.J. Richardson connected on 10 of 15 shots en route to 25 points in London, Ky.
5 5. St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.) 14-2 5 The Celtics looked sharp in two victories. They defeated Blair Academy (Blairstown) at the Lehigh Hoop Fest; and overwhelmed East Orange, 74-42, at the Coalition to House the Homeless in Elizabeth. Michael Gilchrist scored 18 points and Kyree Irving added 14 for the Celtics, who led 24-2 after one period. Irving, a junior transfer, made his season debut after sitting out 30 days under state guidelines, scoring 16 points and Gilchrist had 17 as the Celtics crushed Newark Tech, 72-37. Irving averages 1.7 points.
6 Madison (San Antonio) 27-1 6 The Mavericks topped Johnson (San Antonio), 74-39, and New Braunfels, 84-51. Stephen Baird dropped in a game-high 23 points against Johnson, while Kevin Simmons and Coppin State-bound Jonathan Landry scored 18 at New Braunfels.
7 LeFlore (Mobile, Ala.) 22-2 7 The Rattlers traveled north for a pair of games in New Jersey. It was a homecoming for Coach Otis Hughley, who grew up in Jersey City. First the Rattlers edged Duncanville (Texas), 54-51, at the Prime Time Shootout in Piscataway. Center DeMarcus Cousins had a monster game with 28 points and 14 rebounds. Then they beat Union, 88-57, at the Newark National Invitational. Cousins had his second double-double of the trip, with 26 points and 14 rebounds. LeFlore also beat Lincoln, 67-54, at the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass. Cousins contributed 17 points and 20 rebounds, while Darryl Woods added 17 points.
8 Rice (Manhattan, N.Y.) 10-1 11 The Raiders swept past a pair of opponents in preparation for a busy week. First, they overwhelmed Long Island Lutheran (Brookville), 71-45, at the Big Apple Invitational. Kadeem Jack collected 11 points and eight rebounds. James Stukes scored 24 points in a 70-60 victory over Bishop Loughlin (Brooklyn). The Raiders have three games at the Gauchos Gym this week against Holy Cross (Flushing) Tuesday; St. Raymond (Bronx) Friday; and Jefferson (Brooklyn) Saturday.
9 Montrose Christian (Rockville, Md.) 14-1 9 The Mustangs stopped Jericho Christian (Landover), 69-60. Villanova-bound center Mouphtaou Yarou had 24 points and Terrence Ross added 23. Montrose led 55-34 after three quarters and cruised in the fourth. Coach Stu Vetter's team has a tall order Saturday against regionally-ranked Paul VI (Fairfax, Va.) at the University of Maryland's Comcast Center.
10 Strake Jesuit (Houston) 25-0 12 Tim Frazier was the catalyst in a pair of wins. Frazier had 13 points, 10 rebounds and three steals as the Crusaders topped Spring Woods (Houston), 74-31. He scored 26 points in a 75-72 win over Stratford (Houston), 75-72. Joey Brooks had 23 points and Steven Rogers added 10.
11 Westchester (Los Angeles) 19-1 14 The Comets rolled in both of its Western League games, beating Palisades (Pacific Palisades, Calif.), 80-46 with, juniors Jordan Mayes (17 points, six assists) and Dwayne Polee (15 points nine rebounds, five blocks) leading the way. Senior guard Dominique O'Connor s scored 16 points and grabbed eight boards in a 72-48 victory over Hamilton (Los Angeles).
12 De La Salle (Concord, Calif.) 16-1 24 The Spartans showed why they are a major contender for the CIF Division I title. Coach Frank Allocco's club defeated previous-No 18 McClymonds (Oakland), 43-38. The win stopped Mack's win streak at 49 consecutive games. They also defeated Monte Vista (Danville), 45-34, and San Ramon Valley, 75-44. The Spartans are limiting opponents to less than 34 points per game.
13 Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) 17-2 43 The Eagles have landed atop the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference after thumping rival DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.), 86-76. Princeton-bound forward Ian Hummer scored a game-high 32 points and Cedrick Lindsay added 21. Also beat Good Counsel (Olney, Md.). 73-56, as Lindsay (19 points) and Duke-bound junior Tyler Thornton (18) teamed for 37 points. Coach Steve Turner improved to 100-42.
14 Boyd Anderson (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.) 19-1 13 Defeated Deerfield Beach, 75-63, as Martavious Irving scored 15 points and Cedric Flood added 14. Lost on a buzzer-beater to Cypress Bay (Weston), 57-55. Flood topped the Cobras with 17 points. Coach Eugene Robinson's club plays at Coral Glade (Coral Springs) Tuesday.
15 DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) 15-2 10 Defeated Bishop O'Connell (Arlington, Va.), 62-53, as sophomore guard Quinn Cook (19 points) made six straight free throws in the final 38 seconds. The Stags played without junior guard Josh Selby, who missed the game for breaking an unspecified team rule. DeMatha then lost to Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.), 86-76. Texas A&M-bound Naji Hibbert contributed 18 points.
16 Detroit Country Day (Beverly Hills, Mich.) 11-0 16 Michigan's top-rated Class B team added one victory, pounding Belleville, 89-52. Amir Williams dominated inside with 17 points and 14 rebounds. Junior guard Ray McCallum contributed 16 points.
17 Northland (Columbus, Ohio) 11-0 17 The Vikings, top-ranked in Ohio's Division I, extended their regular season win streak to 56 games with two easy wins against Columbus schools Mifflin, 80-45 and Brookhaven, 63-48, and against Brookhaven, Dimonde Hale led the way with 20 points. Jared Sullinger and J. D. Weatherspoon each added 13.
18 Fairfax (Los Angeles) 15-3 19 The Lions won two Western League games before dismantling San Diego High on ESPN2. First, the Lions downed Venice, 102-60, and then survived a valiant effort against University (Los Angeles), 84-72. Renardo Sidney Jr. posted with 27 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks against University. He was equally impressive in their 86-47 victory over San Diego, netting a game-high 28 points and 12 rebounds.
19 Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) 15-2 20 Sean Johnson and Marion Smith each scored 24 points as the Royals held off a late surge from Bishop Loughlin (Brooklyn), 81-78. Leading by double digits throughout the first half, CTK needed clutch free throw shooting to outset the 39-point performance by 6-foot-6 super junior Jayvaughn Pinkston. The Royals are back at it this week against St. Francis Prep (Fresh Meadows) Tuesday and Loughlin at home on Friday.
20 Olympia (Orlando) 17-3 21 Olympia won three times last week, including a 71-63 decision over previously-unbeaten Orlando Christian Prep. The Titans have won 11 of their last 12 games and halted OCP's 33-game win streak. Sherwood Brown had 19 points and 10 rebounds.
21 Hopkins (Minnetonka, Minn.) 14-0 22 Minnesota's top-ranked Class 4A team won three times last week. The Royals defeated rival Patrick Henry (Minneapolis), 101-48; Vincent (Milwaukee), 86-47; and LaCrosse Academy, 66-27.
22 Bloomington South (Bloomington, Ind.) 13-0 25 The Panthers, top-ranked in Indiana's Class 4A, flexed their muscles during an easy 77-45 victory over Franklin Central (Indianapolis). Jordan Hulls, a 6-foot-0 Indiana recruit, led the way with 17 points, five steals and five assists. They also routed Martinsville, 72-41. The Panthers travel Friday to Pike (Indianapolis) with top spot in Conference Indiana on the line.
23 Centennial (Roswell, Ga.) 15-2 23 The Knights split two games, losing to Miller Grove (Lithonia), 86-72. Lorenzo Brown (28 points) and junior Adrian Rogers (20) teamed to score 48 points in a 69-67 win over Roswell. The Knights play two Region 6B-AAAAA games against Alpharetta and Kell (Marietta) before closing with Tucker Saturday.
24 Christ School (Arden, N.C.) 24-2 8 The Greenies lost for the first time this season, falling to No. 2 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.), 75-58. They defeated Asheville (N.C.) School, 93-52, as five players hit for double figures, led by Mason Plumlee (15 points) and Lakeem Jackson (14). They then beat Our Savior New American (Centereach, N.Y.), 68-66, and lost to Princeton (Cincinnati), 64-60, at the Laurel County Hoop Fest in London, Ky.
25 St. Anthony (Jersey City, N.J.) 14-2 26 Stopped Whitney Young (Chicago), 52-43, at the Newark National Invitational at the Prudential Center. Quinnipiac-bound forward Jamee Jackson had 14 points and three rebounds, earning game Most Valuable Player honors. Also beat Passaic Tech (Wayne), 84-42, and Putnam City (Oklahoma City), 58-50.

ESPN RISE FAB 50 BOYS' BASKETBALL RANKINGS: WEEK 12
Rank Team Record Previous
26 Dominguez (Compton, Calif.) 16-4 38
27 Rock Bridge (Columbia, Mo.) 17-0 28
28 Jamesville-Dewitt (Dewitt, N.Y.) 16-0 30
29 Pershing (Detroit) 12-0 32
30 Chester (Pa.) 14-0 33
31 Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia) 13-2 34
32 Franklin (Seattle) 13-0 46
33 Norcross (Ga.) 17-1 NR
34 McClymonds (Oakland, Calif.) 17-1 18
35 South Atlanta (Atlanta) 17-3 36
36 Plano West (Plano, Texas) 23-2 37
37 Wheeler (Marietta, Ga,) 13-6 35
38 Petersburg (Va.) 16-0 NR
39 Lawrence North (Indianapolis) 13-2 40
40 Mountain State Academy (Beckley, W.Va.) 13-3 41
41 Fayetteville (Ark.) 18-0 42
42 Taft (Woodland Hills, Calif.) 16-2 NR
43 Thornton (Harvey, Ill.) 18-1 NR
44 Holmes (Covington, Ky.) 17-1 NR
45 Lake Clifton (Baltimore) 14-0 NR
46 Princeton (Cincinnati) 12-1 NR
47 Hall (Little Rock, Ark.) 18-1 45
48 Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville, Fla.) 17-5 48
49 Orlando Christian Prep (Orlando, Fla.) 19-1 49
50 Butler (Huntsville, Ala.) 25-3 44

Dropped out: No. 15 Rainier Beach (Seattle); No. 27 Winter Park (Fla.); No. 29 Bethel (Hampton, Va.); No. 31 North Central (Indianapolis); No. 39 Penn Wood (Lansdowne, Pa.); No. 47 Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.); and No. 50 Miller Grove (Lithonia, Ga.).