The first high school basketball rankings are out, and if they are accurate, basketball fans around the area are in for a fun year.
If you start in the largest classification, both Shawnee teams are expected to have some success in their first foray into Class 6A.
The Lady Wolves return Makyra Tramble and Kasey Rice and Monica Brooks returns from a year off with an ACL tear. That core is getting respect as they are ranked No. 16 in the first poll of the year.
The Wolves boys return everyone but Timmy Young from a team that went to state in 5A last year. Ten players who saw a lot of playing time last year are back and ready to take on a 6A field. They came in at No. 17 in the Week One rankings.
Both teams open the season next Tuesday at home against Harrah. The Harrah boys are unranked but the 4A No. 1 Lady Panthers will be a good test for the Lady Wolves to start the year.
If you drop from the biggest class to the smallest, you'll find the Earlsboro Wildcats atop the Class B rankings. EHS brings back a lot of talent from last season’s state tournament team.
On the girls’ side of Class B, Asher has started the year 4-0 and is ranked No. 8.
In Class 2A, no one will be surprised to see both Dale teams near the top of the rankings. The Lady Pirates begin at No. 2 – exactly where they finished last season in the state finals. With Top 100 player Claire Chastain, who has signed with the University of Texas-Arlington, the Lady Pirates are 3-0 and come in right behind Cashion in the initial rankings and just ahead of defending state champs Christian Heritage.
The Dale boys don’t return any starters this year after a deep run in the 2A state tournament last year. However, their 2-1 start with the only loss coming to No. 2 Latta, has given Dale an early No. 5 ranking.
Both Prague teams are ranked in class 3A, as well. The Red Devils start the season at No. 20 and the Lady Devils start the year at No. 6. The Lady Red Devils return some solid starters and also have great young players expected to make this a special year.
Seminole’s Chieftains open the year at No. 15 in 4A. With so many area teams expected to be among the best in their class, this basketball season should be a good one.