Top Teams Take Control of Class AA Girls Halfway Through the Season
The top three teams in Class AA girls in South Dakota have combined records of 29-1 as we head towards the second half of the regular season.
O'Gorman (9-0), Aberdeen Central (11-0), and Washington (9-1) have gone straight through their South Dakota opponents so far this season. Washington's lone loss was to Western Christian, Iowa at the Sanford Pentagon. Outside of that loss, the three teams are the clear favorites so far but have plenty of great teams ready to take their shot.
Just like the Class AA Boys, the girls have eight teams at or above .500 to start the season. Right behind the top three teams sits Sioux Falls Lincoln (6-3), Rapid City Central (7-4), Harrisburg (5-4), and Brandon Valley (6-5).
Here is where the Sioux Falls schools stand heading into the second part of the season.
Sioux Falls O'Gorman (9-0, 45.22 seed points)
The Knights are off to a great start with a perfect 9-0 record. As it stands right now, O'Gorman would be the top seed of both District 1 and the overall number one if the state tournament would start today. The Knights have a strong roster including their two senior leaders in Katie Messler and Rachel Townsend. O'Gorman still has to face Washington and Lincoln two times, and Roosevelt once more. In the final 11 games of the year, O'Gorman will travel outside of Sioux Falls just once. The schedule also sets up favorably for O'Gorman with their final four games at home.
Sioux Falls Washington (9-1, 44.40 seed points)
Washington has won the last two Class AA State Championships and they are off to a fast start in the 2015-2016 campaign. As mentioned, they have not lost to a South Dakota school to this point. Washington is dangerous at all levels with seniors including a great center in Sydney Arrington, forward Anna Goodhope, plus guards Maddie Wiley and Jade Visker. But outside of those four the Warriors are loaded with young talent. They always seem to find a way to reload. Washington is currently in first of District 2 and would be the third overall seed based on seed points. Washington will travel for three more games against Harrisburg, Rapid City Central, and Rapid City Stevens. They also have two games remaining against Roosevelt and O'Gorman, and one more meeting remaining with Lincoln.
Sioux Falls Lincoln (6-3, 42.78 seed points)
Word to the wise: Do NOT count out Sioux Falls Lincoln by any stretch of the imagination. Anna Brecht, who has put up 30+ points in more than 4 games this year, leads an impressive roster towards the back end of the schedule. Lincoln, like Washington, has a ton of talent across the floor. Sydney Rosinsky is one of the most elusive guards in South Dakota and is dangerous if open for three. Izzy VanVeldHuizen is the senior leader of the team and adds her share of points. I've also been very impressed with freshman center Jayda Hallman and the start of her varsity career. Their lone loss this year to a South Dakota school was to Washington back on January 5th. They will have another shot at Washington coming up in February. Lincoln has a couple of trips remaining as they will travel to Brookings, Rapid City, and Watertown in February. Currently Lincoln is second in District 2 and would be the 4th overall seed.
Sioux Falls Roosevelt (4-6, 39.90 seed points)
It hasn't been the easiest start for new head coach David Maxwell, but the Rough Riders are trying to get back on the winning trail. Roosevelt was 4-2 after their first six games, but that quickly turned as the Riders have dropped their last four. Roosevelt has just one senior on the roster in Jamie Spicer and there is a lot of learning taking place for the underclassmen. Rapid City Stevens and Central will be traveling to Roosevelt this weekend for a set of games. They have to play Washington twice yet, and face O'Gorman and Lincoln once more. Most of the travel has been completed this season as Roosevelt will be in Sioux Falls for eight of their last ten games. As of now, the Rough Riders would be 7th overall if the state tournament were to start today based just on seed points. They are currently in second in District 1.
Seedings for the district tournaments and state tournament are based on these “seed points.” They are calculated by wins/losses against the records of opponents faced on a graded system, and then divided by the number of games played.
If the state tournament was to start today this would be the top eight teams based on seed points (not based on district/region tournaments).
1) Sioux Falls O'Gorman (9-0, 45.22)
2) Aberdeen Central (11-0, 44.55)
3) Sioux Falls Washington (9-1, 44.40)
4) Sioux Falls Lincoln (6-3, 42.78)
5) Rapid City Central (7-4, 41.36)
6) Harrisburg (5-4, 41.11)
7) Sioux Falls Roosevelt (4-6, 39.90)
8) Brandon Valley (6-5, 39.82)
Watertown (4-6, 39.50), Pierre (5-5, 39.40), and Rapid City Stevens (4-6, 39.30) are not too far behind making the race in Class AA Girls very interesting heading into the second half.