1. Lanphier – The loss at Lincoln is something you can certainly stomach when the Railers shoot the lights out. That being said, the Lions also seemed to struggle with the zone press and will have to figure that out before the postseason. The Lions still have the upper hand in the conference with Southeast coming to Lober Nika for the game that could decide the CS8 title on Tuesday. Lanphier won the first matchup, so they stay at number despite the loss.
2. Southeast – The steady Spartans have been chugging along since City, waiting for their rematch with Lanphier. Southeast moved into a tie atop the CS8 standings with the Lincoln loss and have been developing their younger talent in the process with guys like Terrion Murdix getting a ton of minutes since Jordan Stapleton went down the ankle injury. That’ll only had to their depth and help them prepare for the postseason.
3. Eisenhower – The Panthers have won five straight and look like they’re ready for postseason play. While the early season losses knocked them out of the CS8 race, they look like a team that no one wants to see in regionals.
4. Lincoln – The Railers knocked off Lanphier on their home floor but then they couldn’t handle Eisenhower on Tuesday. Lincoln has shown they are capable of playing with the top tier teams but haven’t put themselves into that conversation because shooting 10 of 11 from three point range isn’t sustainable. Next Friday, the Railsplitters host Southeast in what could decide how many teams share the conference crown.
5. MacArthur – The Generals are in the same boat with Ike, Lincon and Jax. Not on the same tier but capable of playing with Lanphier and Southeast. While they too are out of the conference race, they can play spoiler this Friday when they head into Southeast’s gym
6. Jacksonville – Brandon McCombs continues to put up DeMarcus Cousins-like numbers but the Crimsons have also struggled to put teams away that they should beat. The Crimsons are a team you don’t want to see in the postseason and can also play spoiler with Lanphier coming to the Bowl this Friday….remember what happened last year when the Lions were sent home with a loss at the buzzer.
7. SHG – The future is bright but this season is still a learning experience. Closing the season out with Lincoln, Eisenhower and a rematch with Springfield High, getting two out of three would be huge going into regionals.
8. Springfield High – The Senators are starting at least three sophomores most nights and playing with Jacksonville on Tuesday shows that the talent is there.
9. Glenwood – More and more fresh faces appear in the Glenwood scorebook every week, the freshman and sophomores are getting time at the varsity level, which will only help down the road.
10. Rochester – The Rockets picked up their second CS8 win last weekend from a weather delay.
1. Pleasant Plains – The more we see this Cardinals team down the stretch, the more we like what we see. Kyle Weber has this team ready for postseason play and winning a Sangamo title in his first season with Plains is impressive. They can lock up a share of the Sangamo crown with a win against Riverton at home on Friday night before regionals start next week.
2. PORTA – The Bluejays like to make things interesting, but they keep winning games. PORTA just has to beat Maroa-Forsyth and they get a share of the Sangamo title this season, which Max Muller certainly deserves his senior year. Hosting a regional will certainly help their chances next week as well.
3. Williamsville – Which team shows up? Williamsville knocked off Peoria Quest on Saturday at the Riverton shootout but then almost lost to Riverton on Tuesday. The defense is a no doubt, but the offense has to come from a couple different guys if they want to win.
4. New Berlin – The Pretzels simply don’t have the fire power to keep up with Pleasant Plains, but a ten point loss to the Cardinals doesn’t hurt their resume. New Berlin got a good draw in regionals, look for them to pick up a few wins in 1A.