KSPR Boys Basketball Power Rankings – Week 4
(Teams are ranked by the KSPR Sports Department based on their relative strength to class size. Overall dominance, strength of schedule, quality wins, and momentum are factors in determining the order. Feel free to email comments to email@example.com)
(Last week in parenthesis)
1. Nixa (2) – The Eagles had a dominating week at the Blue and Gold capturing their 2nd straight Blue Division title with a 75-65 win over Kickapoo. Driven by highlight reel dunks from Kameron Bundy and Jalen Norman, along with precision scoring from Austin Ruder and Jordan Epps coach Osborne's class 5 contenders steamrolled Lebanon, Buffalo, and Rogersville on their way to the finals.
2. Billings (1) – The previously top ranked Wildcats suffered their first loss with a 81-60 Southwest Tournament semifinal setback to the host. Otherwise a strong week, beating Miller by 37, East Newton by 15, and Purdy for 3rd place in the SW Tourney.
3. Hillcrest (3) – The Hornets were some what shocked in the Gold Division championship Thursday night, beaten 43-41 in overtime by red hot Republic. Coach Schaefer's squad had dominated to that point with wins over Mansfield, Conway, and Ozark. They also beat Willard 58-50 prior to Christmas.
4. Rogersville (5) – Coach Gorman's Wildcats picked up a 3rd place finish in the Blue Division this year. No shame there; their only loss came in the semifinals 54-43 to Nixa. The Wildcats picked up tourney wins over Aurora, Bolivar, and Morrisville, but the big win came prior to Christmas with a 21 point home win over class 5 Glendale.
5. Kickapoo (7) – The Chiefs move up a couple spots after a strong runner-up finish in the Gold Divison. Ryan Rippee's 28 points pushed the Chiefs to the brink of an upset over Nixa before eventually falling 75-65. Rippee, who earned his 1,000th career point just before Christmas, also beat Camdenton, Strafford, and Morrisville this week.
6. Norwood (8) – The Pirates appear to be back on track. They captured the Cabool Tournament championship with wins over Plato, MV-BT/Liberty, Seymour, and Eminence. Senior Riley Jenkins went over the amazing 2,000 point mark and sits just 4 points shy of the school record entering their January 6th game at Dora.
7. Marshfield (4) – An overall shaky stretch for the Jays; they picked up pre-Christmas dominating wins over Camdenton and Catholic, but nearly lost to Ava in overtime of the Blue and Gold opener. The 2-seed Jays then blasted Spokane, but lost their 1st game of the season in the semifinals, 45-43 to Republic. They also lost the 3rd place game 79-69 to Ozark.
8. Morrisville (9) – It was a great week for the Panthers. After a 35 point win over Stockton they opened Blue and Gold play with a 57-41 win over Skyline, then pulled a major upset over Willard in the quarterfinals. Brandon Martinsen went over 1,000 career points in the victory. From there, the Panthers were a bit overmatched with a 54-29 semifinal loss to Kickapoo and a 68-41 3rd place game setback at the hands of Rogersville.
9. Republic (NR) - The Tigers have come out of nowhere to become a contender in the ultra-deep class 4 district 11 (Hillcrest, Rogersville, Marshfield). Coach Stanfield's squad used defense to win the Gold Division championship with a 43-41 overtime upset of Hillcrest. They also beat Greenwood, Fair Grove, and Marshfield allowing 27, 32, and 43 points respectively.
10. Glendale (6) – A 71-50 pre-Christmas loss at Rogersville won't sit well with Coach Williamson's Falcons. That gives them a lot to think about before opening Ozark Conference play Friday January 6th at 9 and 1 Hillcrest.
11. Southwest (NR) - The Trojans burst onto the radar with an impressive championship run through their own tournament. They beat Pea Ridge 60-38 before upsetting top seed Billings 81-60 then took down Wheaton 64-44 in the title game. Now that's a good week!
12. Wheaton (12) – The Bulldogs had a nice holiday week with wins over Cassville and Purdy before falling in the Southwest Tournament championship to the host Bulldogs.
13. Fair Grove (11) – After edging Cassville prior to Christmas break the Eagles edged Crane in their Blue and Gold opener, but were blown out by Republic in the quarterfinals 62-32.
14. Seymour (15) – The Tigers had a highly successful holiday stretch with a 20 point win over Plato, 40 point win over Lutie, 8 point win over Winona before falling 53-47 to Norwood in the Cabool Tournament semifinals. They followed by knocking off Licking 57-52 in the 3rd place game.
15. Eminence (NR) - I'll be honest, I don't know much about the Redwings, but wins over Houston, Gainesville, and Licking are enough to put them on the radar in class 1.
Dropped out: Climax Springs, Licking, Conway
Knocking on the door: Fair Play, Strafford, Mt Vernon, Diamond, Carthage