Girls Basketball Class 1A Top Ten Breakdown
I will post Top Ten Breakdowns until we jump full sail into league play then we will move into league predictions and playoff scenarios. Early on one thing is for certain. Kit Carson is the clear-cut favorite right now. The question is who can rise to challenge the Defending State Champions. There has been a ton of movement the past few weeks and it continued last week with two new teams joining the rankings Briggsdale and Wiley. Hopefully some clarity starts to form with the 1A Girls.
#1 Kit Carson (6-0)
Kit Carson is your defending state champions and off to a very good start. Kit Carson has a lot of quality wins already early in the season with a huge 2A win over Limon. This past weekend Kit Carson won the Lamar Holiday Shootout for the fifth consecutive year. Kit Carson dominated the tournament winning every game by 30+ points. Kit Carson is proving once again they are the team to beat and have a lot of depth and talent. Kit Carson will be the favorite to win District 2 but except a challenge from McClave and Eads. Kit Carson early on is being led by Tess Hornung (15.2 ppg) and Olivia Isenbart (13.8 ppg). Kit Carson has 4 players over 5 ppg. Kit Carson has finished all games in December and after break jump into action against Eads and Arickaree/Woodlin. Eads will be their first District game but looking way ahead games against Holly again, Haxtun, Genoa-Hugo, and Simla await the Defending Champions.
#2 Haxtun (4-1)
Haxtun opened their 1A campaign with a bang blasting traditional 1A Power Fleming 58-38. Haxtun then followed that win with 3 other solid wins over Merino, Sedgwick County, and Peetz. Haxtun did recently pick up their first loss of the season to 2A Holyoke 60-53. Haxtun is proving right away that the are a threat in 1A. Haxtun plays in District 5 and is the favorite to win the district. Haxtun though will be challenged by Arickaree/Woodlin and Otis. Haxtun has 5 players over 5 ppg but are led by Dawson Knode (15 ppg) and Brooklyn Davis (9.6 ppg). Haxtun should be a threat right away in 1A and close their December schedule with a final game against Caliche. After break Haxtun plays Leyton NE and rival Sedgwick County. Haxtun also has a rematch with Holyoke on 1/11 and that will be a game to watch for early on in January.
#3 South Baca (6-0)
South Baca is off to an amazing start and the experience gained from regionals last year seems to be paying off. South Baca picked up a pair of quality wins as well beating Springfield and La Veta. South Baca though has not played a ranked team yet, so some questions still exist. South Baca is in District 3 which has 4 of the 5 teams at or above .500. South Baca, Kim/Branson, Wiley, and Springfield all will battle it out for the District crown. South Baca has completed their December schedule and after break play Felt OK. On January 11 they play Cheyenne Wells and then play a ranked Wiley team which could go a long way to determine District 3.
#4 Sangre De Cristo (5-1)
Sangre De Cristo has opened the 2018-2019 basketball season in great fashion with the 5-1 start. Sangre De Cristo biggest knock is the lack of a competitive schedule blasting every opponent by 25+ points. Sangre De Cristo did finally play their toughest opponent of the December schedule against #1 2A Del Norte. Del Norte dominated the game but could be huge experience the T-Birds needed. Sangre De Cristo is the favorite in District 6 but expect a challenge from La Veta, Sierra Grande, and Cotopaxi. Sangre De Cristo early on has 5 players over 5 ppg and seem to have a ton of depth. Sangre De Cristo is led by Kylee Christensen (14.8 ppg) and Jessica Slane (10.0 ppg). Schedule wise Sangre De Cristo has one game left in December against Creede which is a league game. After break things pick up quickly for the T-Birds with a big game against Rocky Ford on 1/4. Sangre De Cristo then jumps back into District play against Cotopaxi on 1/18.
#5 Genoa-Hugo (6-0)
Genoa-Hugo is probably the surprise team to start the year. Probably a year ahead of schedule Genoa-Hugo is playing great basketball. Genoa-Hugo has a pair of quality wins against North Park and Arickaree/Woodlin. Genoa-Hugo has to be happy with the 6-0 start. Genoa-Hugo has become the favorite to win District 7 but expect a challenge from Elbert, Deer Trail, Kiowa, and Pikes Peak Christian. Genoa-Hugo has 4 players scoring over 5 ppg and two player over 10 ppg. Genoa-Hugo is led by Rylee Smartt (11.8 ppg) and Brylee Miller (11.4 ppg). Remember Genoa-Hugo has just 1 senior on the roster and this team should only get better. The Pirates are finished with their December schedule and after break face their toughest opponent this year Limon. Genoa-Hugo then follows that game with another tough 2A opponent in Peyton. These two games are huge for Genoa-Hugo and valuable experience.
#6 Briggsdale (7-0)
Briggsdale is another surprise team and off to a hot 7-0 start. Briggsdale picked up a huge win this past weekend beating Fleming 61-52. Briggsdale also picked up big wins over Prairie, Arickaree/Woodlin, and De Beque. Briggsdale quickly has moved into the favorite role of District 4. Briggsdale win over Fleming was a league game as was their win over Weldon Valley. They will face all opponents twice so getting off to a solid start is important to this Briggsdale team. District 4 should be a battle between Briggsdale, Prairie, Fleming, Merino, and Longmont Christian. Briggsdale is another very young team with just 1 senior. Briggsdale two leading scorers are Freshman Kylie Krise (15.5 ppg) and Sophomore Shelby Hoffman (14.6 ppg). Briggsdale seems to be rising quickly but can this young team continue to play consistent basketball. Briggsdale wrapped up their December schedule and after break open play against Peetz. The game against Prairie on 1/18 will be their first true test of the 2019 year.
#7 Fleming (3-2)
Fleming is off to a solid 3-2 start especially with the tough losses they have. Fleming two losses are to #2 Haxtun and #6 Briggsdale. Fleming keeps the trend going as they are also extremely young with just 1 senior and is their #2 scorer on the team. Fleming is led in scoring by Kendyl Kirkwood (16.0 ppg) and Jenna Lengfelder (13.3 ppg). Fleming is a team that will improve as the year goes on especially with 5 freshmen on the roster. Fleming is in District 4 and will be one of the tougher teams in the District. Fleming has one last game in December and it’s a league game against Weldon Valley. Right after break Fleming plays a pair of games against Arickaree/Woodlin and Sedgwick County. The first real big test for Fleming will be on 1/19 against Prairie.
#8 La Veta (5-1)
La Veta opened up the season with a solid 41-37 victory over Hoehne. La Veta then picked up their first loss of the season losing to #3 South Baca 60-27. Since that loss La Veta has taken off picking up 4 straight wins and grabbing a quality win over John Mall 31-27. La Veta is the main challenger to Sangre De Cristo in District 6. La Veta is led by Kylee Corsentino (22.7 ppg). La Veta currently has just 2 other girls scoring over 5 ppg and another scoring threat must emerge for this La Veta team and I look toward Mary Goins (5.5 ppg) or Emalee Ortibez (5.2 ppg) to step up. La Veta has one last game in December and it’s a big one against Kim/Branson. This is a big game to see just how much La Veta has grown since their loss to South Baca. After break La Veta has a game against Cheraw before jumping back into league play against Centennial.
#9 North Park (3-1)
North Park opened the 2018-2019 season with a loss to Genoa-Hugo and it must have fired them up winning their next 3 games including a shutout victory over Golden View Classical (69-0). North Park also picked up impressive wins over South Park (60-35) and West Grand (47-39). North Park is the favorite to win District 1 but expect a challenge from Ouray, Dove Creek, and De Beque. North Park has one final game in December against Encampment WY. North Park then comes back after break and play a very good 2A Meeker team which should tell us more about North Park. Also, North Park plays a 2A league schedule, so they will be battle tested for the District Tournament.
#10 Wiley (4-2)
Wiley is 4-2 in the early season with both losses coming to good team (Holly & Kit Carson). Wiley has picked up some impressive victories though beating Cheyenne Wells, Springfield, and McClave. The win over McClave pushed them into the rankings and the 3rd place finish in the Lamar Holiday Shootout. Wiley competes in the very good District 3 and this will make things tough for Wiley. As mentioned above 4 of the 5 teams will be fighting for 3 spots and for the District crown. Wiley has 4 player over 5 ppg but don’t have any girls over the 10 ppg mark. Defense has been key for Wiley early on and they must continue to get solid scoring from Marisa Vazquez (8.0 ppg), Taira Weber (7.7 ppg), and Mariana Morales (7.3 ppg). Wiley is done till after break. They head first into a tough matchup with Kim/Branson and a rematch with Holly on 1/10. We will learn a lot about Wiley early on in January.
Non-Top Ten Teams
A few teams to keep an eye on are Springfield, McClave, Kim/Branson, Arickaree/Woodlin, and De Beque. All 5 teams have some tough losses but are still going to be tough games for anyone they play. Springfield and McClave has played a brutal schedule to open the year and both have over 3 losses so far. Springfield has played just 2 teams with losing records and the rest are either ranked opponents or quality opponents. McClave is in a similar boat playing some very tough Kansas teams as well as playing some very tough opponents. Kim/Branson is off to a 4-1 start but lack of quality opponents have me questioning how good Kim/Branson is. Kim/Branson best quality win is against Sierra Grande. Kim/Branson also picked up their first loss of the season to Rocky Ford a quality 2A opponent. Kim/Branson faces La Veta on 12/20 and we will learn a lot about both teams when they face each other. Arickaree/Woodlin also has played a difficult schedule with both losses coming to Top 10 teams (Briggsdale & Genoa-Hugo). Arickaree/Woodlin is missing a quality win and that could be Lone Star who is 5-1 but we are still not sure how good Lone Star is. Arickaree/Woodlin plays a buzz saw schedule after break with Akron, Fleming, Kit Carson, Stratton/Liberty, and Genoa-Hugo all before the 12th of January. De Beque is the final team to mention. De Beque is 5-1 on the season with their lone loss coming to Briggsdale (35-31). De Beque did pick up a quality win over Hotchkiss (51-46). De Beque does play Plateau Valley (5-0) tonight and that is a quality opponent. De Beque does play a 2A league schedule and they will be battle tested like North Park for District 1 play.