Class 3A Boys Basketball District Predictions Week 8
We are cruising thru the regular season and most teams are starting to kick off their league/district schedules. Remember in Class 3A Seven District/Leagues qualify two teams automatically into the State Bracket, with the remaining 18 teams determined by RPI.
Regional Automatic Qualifier Predictions:
1. Eagle Ridge Academy
3. DSST-Green Valley Ranch
4. Fort Lupton
5. DSST-Conservatory Green
6. Aurora West Prep
Eagle Ridge Academy stays as my pick to win the Confluence/Colorado District. Eagle Ridge Academy is 10-1 currently and on a 4-game winning streak with there best win coming over Denver West. Eagle Ridge Academy plays 4A Aurora Central tomorrow night. The game to keep an eye on is on 2/3 against Englewood. Englewood is my pick to finish in second. Englewood is currently 8-3 and they did a good job bouncing back after a tough loss beating Fort Lupton 70-56. Englewood does not have another game this week and have a pair of tough games next week with the main event on 2/3. DSST-Green Valley Ranch is my pick to finish in 3rd but is in good shape to reach the regional tournament. DSST-Green Valley Ranch is 8-4 overall and have a #19 RPI. DSST-Green Valley Ranch picked up a very impressive 73-58 upset of Kent Denver on Wednesday. DSST-Green Valley Ranch will host Addenbrooke Classical next week, and I don’t see DSST-Green Valley being challenged until the District Tournament. Fort Lupton is my pick to finish in 4th. Fort Lupton is currently 8-5 and sit square on the bubble at #31. Fort Lupton will need to take care of business down the stretch, but they do have a tough schedule with key games against Eagle Ridge Academy, SkyView, and Aurora Central. DSST-Conservatory Green and Aurora West Prep are listed as contenders, but they need to snag some key wins to get more into the conversation. Both teams sit outside the top 50 in the RPI.
#18 Eagle Ridge Academy, #19 DSST-Green Valley Ranch, #20 Englewood, #31 Fort Lupton, #50 Aurora West Prep, #54 DSST-Conservatory Green
Regional Automatic Qualifier Predictions:
2. Denver West
4. The Academy
5. Middle Park
7. Arrupe Jesuit
DSST-Montview stays as my pick to win the Frontier District. DSST-Montview is currently 8-5 and have won 5 straight games. DSST-Montview during their winning streak picked up a very important 45-32 win over Pinnacle which will help their seed. DSST-Montview still have key games against The Academy, Middle Park, and Bennett. Denver West stays as my pick to finish in second. Denver West is currently 12-3 and sit at #27 in the RPI. Denver West has played well in 2022 and picked up a solid win over SkyView last week. Denver West does not have a game this week but get back into action next week. They have nearly completed their schedule and have just 3 games scheduled on Maxpreps. Pinnacle is my pick to finish in 3rd. Pinnacle sits in solid position to reach regionals at #22 in the RPI. Pinnacle is currently 8-2 and they have a key clash tomorrow against Middle Park. Pinnacle still has a plenty of key games, so they are still a team on the bubble. The Academy is my pick to finish in 4th. The Academy sit at #25 in the RPI but would get into regionals currently. The Academy is 7-5 overall but have played well as of late. The Academy should pick up two more wins before a key clash with Middle Park and DSST-Montview next week. Middle Park is my pick to finish in 5th. Middle Park is currently 10-2 and sit at #23 in the RPI. They would also be into the regional tournament, but some very key games are coming up for Middle Park. The first of the big games is tomorrow night against Pinnacle then on 2/3 they face The Academy. Bennett and Arrupe Jesuit are both contenders to reach regional but it’s crunch time for both teams. Arrupe Jesuit and Bennett both sit outside the top 55 in the RPI and both have a key game this weekend that could see their regional hopes rise or fall.
#22 Pinnacle, #23 Middle Park, #24 DSST-Montview, #25 The Academy, #27 Denver West, #56 Arrupe Jesuit, #57 Bennett
Regional Automatic Qualifiers Prediction:
3. Pagosa Springs
Centauri stays as my pick to win the Intermountain League. Centauri is currently 10-1 on the season and they picked up their first loss last weekend falling to Pagosa Springs 47-42. Centauri will look to bounce back tonight when they host Bayfield and then Montezuma-Cortez the next night. Centauri won’t face Alamosa till next week and that will be a key game. Alamosa stays as my team to finish in second. Alamosa is 8-3 currently and sit at #16 in the RPI. Alamosa had a tough loss to Buena Vista two weeks ago and now Alamosa must bounce back this Friday against Montezuma-Cortez. Alamosa will also face Pagosa Springs for the last time on Saturday and could determine the #2 or #3 seed in the District Tournament. Pagosa Springs holds onto the #3 spot. Pagosa Springs does not move up despite the win over Centauri. Pagosa Springs sits at #17 in the RPI and are in good position to reach regionals. The only reason I am not moving Pagosa Springs up is their loss to Alamosa. Pagosa Springs gets a shot at revenge on Saturday when they travel to face Alamosa. Bayfield and Cortez I think are out of the mix unless one can get an upset. Cortez sits at #49 in the RPI and Bayfield is #53. I think both are to far outside the bubble unless they can get an upset of the top 3 teams in the district.
#7 Centauri, #16 Alamosa, #17 Pagosa Springs, #49 Montezuma-Cortez, #53 Bayfield
Metro League (Boys)
The Metro League update is completed by Doug Wright. Once again thank you for the update and the great insight into the Metro League.
1. Kent Denver
2. Colorado Academy
5. Faith Christian
7. Stargate School
8. Prospect Ridge
9. Jefferson Academy
10. Peak to Peak
11. SkyView Academy
High-scoring Kent Denver (10-1, 4-0 in Metro League) remains the team to beat in the Metro League. The Sun Devils are averaging 88.5 points per game through their first 12 games, with their only loss coming in December to The Academy on a rare off night by leading scorer Ethan Levin (24.9 PPG). Kent Denver has a quality league win over Lutheran and should move into February without issues until it faces rivals Colorado Academy and Manual. Colorado Academy (11-1, 3-0 Metro League) retains the #2 spot in the Metro League. Since a close season-opening non-league loss to top-ranked St. Mary’s, the Mustangs have reeled off 11 straight convincing victories, including a recent league win over Faith Christian. The challenging part of the league schedule remains ahead for Colorado Academy, however. Despite a loss at top dog Kent Denver, Lutheran (6-5, 2-1 Metro League) slides ahead of Manual in the standings thanks to a 70-64 road win over the Thunderbolts. A home tilt this week pitting the Lions against #2 Colorado Academy will sort out the upper echelons of the league. Always dangerous due to the high-scoring Jordan Reed, Manual (7-4, 3-1 Metro League) rounds out the current top four. Faith Christian (8-4, 3-1 Metro League) also remains in the hunt for a State berth due to a high RPI ranking, although the Eagles lost to Colorado Academy and they have yet to play league powerhouses Kent Denver, Lutheran and Manual.
My predictions for Metro
League Champion: Kent Denver
Regional Automatic Qualifiers: Kent Denver & Colorado Academy
At-Large Region/State Contenders: Lutheran, Manual, Faith Christian
Regional Automatic Qualifier Predictions:
2. Resurrection Christian
6. Platte Valley
9. Liberty Common
10. Estes Park
The Patriot is always one of the tougher districts and once again will have plenty of talented teams. I think 9 of the 12 teams can compete for a regional/state tournament spot. Sterling stays as my pick to win the Patriot League. Sterling is 11-1 currently and last week picked up a hard fought 60-50 win over Platte Valley. Sterling this week will travel to face Brush and then have a key non-league bout against Faith Christian tomorrow. Resurrection Christian stays as my pick for second. Resurrection Christian continued their hot start to 2022 with key wins over University and Platte Valley. Resurrection Christian will travel to face Liberty Common this Friday, but their schedule really ramps up next week when they face Brush, Sterling, and Strasburg. Eaton is my pick to finish in 3rd. Eaton sits at #5 in the RPI and a near lock for Regionals. Eaton is 11-2 currently and most recently they picked up a solid win over Strasburg. Eaton moves out of league play this week to face Severance. Next week Eaton has a key clash on Tuesday against University and will be key for seeding this tournament. Highland holds onto the #4 spot and sit at #6 in the RPI. Highland is another near lock for regionals and they have a huge clash with 2A Denver Christian on Saturday. Highland also added a key game against Aspen and should give us a good look at both teams. University is my pick to finish 5th and sit at #10 in the RPI. University has had a tougher 2022 going 4-3 during their first 7 games. University this Friday host Estes Park before a key game on Tuesday against Eaton. Platte Valley I have slotted in at #6. Platte Valley is the last team I think is a near lock for Regional at #12 in the RPI. Platte Valley is 8-4 overall but are coming off their first two game losing streak of the season. Platte Valley gets Valley tonight but a key non-league game against Kent Denver awaits on Saturday. Brush is the final team in the Patriot inside the top 32 of the RPI. Brush is currently 7-5 overall and sit at #29 in the RPI. Brush is on the bubble so winning some key games down the stretch is important. Brush will host Sterling tonight and look for an upset of the #1 team in Class 3A. Strasburg is a contender for an at-large berth, but their tough early schedule will put winning down the stretch as a key. Strasburg sits at #47 in the RPI, but they do have some favorable games down the stretch but winning against teams like Liberty Common, Ellicott, and Estes Park are key to getting into Regionals. Liberty Common is another team on the bubble but on the outside looking in. Liberty Common sits at #34 in the RPI but Liberty Common has a difficult schedule going down the stretch. Liberty Common games on 2/8 against Strasburg could be for one of the final spots in the regional tournament. Estes Park sits at #42 in the RPI and is also a contender. Estes Park will need to start grabbing some wins but their schedule does them little help as they face the top half of the league and may need an upset of two to jump into contention.
#1 Sterling, #5 Eaton, #6 Highland, #8 Resurrection Christian, #10 University, #12 Platte Valley, #29 Brush, #34 Liberty Common, #42 Estes Park, #47 Strasburg
Regional Automatic Qualifier Predictions:
1. St. Mary’s
2. C.S Christian
4. Manitou Springs
5. Woodland Park
6. Banning Lewis
7. Woodland Park
9. La Junta
The Tri-Peaks continue to be very interesting, but I do think 6 to 7 teams get into regionals, but 9 teams look to be in the race for a regional spot. St. Mary’s stays as my pick to win the Tri-Peaks. St. Mary’s is currently 13-1 and I believe have nearly locked up the Tri-Peaks regular season title and the #1 seed in the District Tournament. St. Mary’s still has some key games against Vanguard, Banning Lewis, Ellicott, and Florence. I don’t really see St. Mary’s being challenge down the stretch. C.S Christian stays as my pick to finish in second. C.S Christian is 8-5 on the season but are coming off back-to-back losses. C.S Christian should bounce back on Saturday when they face James Irwin. C.S Christian will still need to face Buena Vista, Banning Lewis, and Florence but are in good position to lock up the #2 seed in the District Tournament. Salida is my pick to finish in 3rd. Salida is 9-4 currently and sit at #14 in the RPI. Salida is a near lock for regionals but have a few key games remaining. Salida is also in position to lock up a top 4 seed in the District Tournament but must void upsets against Buena Vista or Vanguard. Manitou Springs is my pick to finish in 4th. Manitou Springs is currently 7-6 overall and sit at #26 in the RPI. Manitou Springs is on the bubble and plenty of key games remain to help lock a spot up at regionals. Manitou Springs will face Florence on Wednesday, Buena Vista the following week and close the year against Woodland Park. Manitou Springs, I feel has control of their own fate. After Manitou Springs things get very interesting. Woodland Park gets the nod in the #5 spot this week. Woodland Park is 7-7 overall and sit at #32 in the RPI. Woodland Park picked up a key upset over C.S Christian last night but winning down the stretch is key for the getting to regionals. Woodland Park will face Banning Lewis next Wednesday and that game could be key to their push for Regionals. After Woodland Park I am not picking where teams will finish instead look at their regional chances. Buena Vista is a regional contender and would actually be in the field as they sit at #30. Buena Vista has recently hit a rough patch losing 3 straight games. Buena Vista needs a win over Lamar to stay in the top 32 of the RPI. Buena Vista still has a lot of key games remaining. Florence sits at #35 in the RPI and a recent 2 game winning streak keeps their regional hopes alive. Florence has just 4 games remaining and it’s not an easy task. Florence must face Manitou Springs, La Junta, C.S Christian, and St. Mary’s. Florence -probably needs 2 wins to jump into the top 32 and all 4 games will be difficult. La Junta sits at 7-8 overall and sit at #37 in the RPI. La Junta will also need a solid run of wins down the stretch to get into regionals. La Junta will face Vanguard (A must win), Florence (winner probably keeps hopes alive), Woodland Park, and Lamar. La Junta needs probably 3 wins to push for a regional spot. Banning Lewis is the final team to mention. Banning Lewis sits at #41 in the RPI and 7-6 overall. Banning Lewis is now in crunch time as they need wins. Banning Lewis probably needs to win 3 if not 4 of their final 6 games to push for a regional spot.
#2 St. Mary’s, #11 C.S Christian, #14 Salida, #26 Manitou Springs, #30 Buena Vista, #32 Woodland Park, #35 Florence, #37 La Junta, #41 Banning Lewis,
Regional Automatic Qualifiers Prediction:
2. Moffat County
3. Coal Ridge
6. Roaring Fork
7. Grand Valley
First, I would like to give a shoutout to CP Martinez. He has provided me some great insight into the Western Slope League and his information is key to these predictions. Currently the Western Slope is looking like just 2 teams could get into Regionals but plenty of games still to be played. Aspen stays as my pick to win the Western Slope League. Aspen seems to be a cut above the rest of the league currently at 11-0. Aspen did not play the toughest schedule so winning out could be key to keeping a top 5 seed in regionals. Moffat County moves into my #2 spot. Moffat County is currently 7-4 and 3 of their 4 losses come to 4A teams. Moffat County did pick up a solid win over Coal Ridge last week. Moffat County size will be a key factor to them finishing in the top 3. Moffat County will face Delta this Saturday and is a key game for both teams. Coal Ridge is my pick for 3rd place. Coal Ridge is 5-6 currently and have lost 5 games in 2022 already. Coal Ridge lacks size and lean on their top 2 scorers to carry the offense. Coal Ridge will look to bounce back when they travel to face Basalt and could be a must win game for Coal Ridge who sits at #43 in the RPI. I step away where I think teams will finish and look more at RPI. Grand Valley has the 3rd highest RPI in the Western Slope at #39. Grand Valley is 6-6 but are coming off a tough 61-55 loss to Roaring Fork. Grand Valley will face Aspen this Saturday. Grand Valley will need clutch wins down the stretch to try and jump into the top 32. Gunnison sits at #40 in the RPI and a record of 5-6 overall. Gunnison has started league play strong picking up a hard fought 45-55 win over Delta. Gunnison will need to string wins together down the stretch to push their RPI up. Gunnison will face North Fork Friday and Roaring Fork Saturday both are must win games for Gunnison. Roaring Fork sits at #46 in the RPI but in 2022 have won 2 of their first 3 games. Roaring Fork will need a strong showing in 2022 to even have a shot a regionals. A win over Gunnison could be what they need. Delta is the final team to mention. Delta sits at #48 in the RPI and have a record on 3-8. Delta needs to string together some wins to try and push for the playoffs. Delta will need to win the majority of their games down the stretch but a tough schedule awaits Delta.
Western Slope RPI:
#4 Aspen, #28 Moffat County, #39 Grand Valley, #40 Gunnison, #43 Coal Ridge, #46 Roaring Fork, #48 Delta, #59 North Fork, #61 Basalt