1. Republic, 3-0 (1)
The Lady Tigers extended their winning streak to nine straight, dating back to last season, after a 57-14 beat down of Central. In that game Coach Flood’s squad surrendered just two first quarter points, which came on free-throws. Republic will finish the week by hosting Carl Junction on Thursday.
2. Walnut Grove, 4-1 (2)
Walnut Grove played its first Class 1 team last night. A 40 point victory later they proved why they are one of the Ozarks best bets to bring home a state championship this season. The Lady Tigers, the top seed in their holiday tournament later this month, return to the court Thursday when they host Wheatland.
3. Marionville, 6-1 (3)
Since losing to Ash Grove nearly two weeks ago, the Lady Comets have outscored their three opponents 210-90, including a 81-32 rout of Hurley on Monday. Marionville will host Greenfield on Thursday. It will be Greenfield’s fourth consecutive game against teams in our power rankings (Dadeville, Walnut Grove, Morrisville).
4. Ash Grove, 6-0 (5)
In the early part of the season, Ash Grove seems to be the class of a loaded Mid-Lakes Conference. The Lady Pirates continued their stellar play to the start of the campaign with a 20 point win over Catholic, followed by a 29 point rout over Clever on Monday. Ash Grove will play host to Aurora on Thursday.
5. Ozark, 5-2 (4)
Ozark is possibly the area’s most battle tested team three weeks into the season. The Lady Tigers opened their season by playing in two Arkansas tournaments (Rogers and Fort Smith TOC) and have walked away with a 4-2 record and a pair of runner-up finishes, the latter coming by way of a three point overtime defeat. After playing five games in eight days the Lady Tigers are idle until the Pink and White Lady Classic.
6. Dadeville, 7-0 (7)
Dadeville continued its dominance last week by defeating fellow Class 1 opponents Everton and Golden City by a combined 80 points. The Lady Bearcats take on Lockwood and Hermitage before taking an extended break until the New Year.
7. Nixa, 5-1 (6)
Top seeded Nixa had a disappointing quarterfinal showing in last week’s Joplin Tournament, falling to eighth seed Blue Valley West (Kan.) 37-30 in the opening round. However, the Lady Eagles bounced back with a pair of impressive wins over COC foes Webb City (52-48) and Neosho (56-8) to claim the consolation championship. Nixa will visit Kickapoo on Thursday and host Glendale on Monday in a pair of nonconference games.
8. Southwest (Washburn), 5-0 (11)
The Lady Trojans have ridden suffocating defense to its unbeaten start this season. Southwest has only allowed one team (Cassville) to score more than 30 points. We will find out just how good Coach Phillips’ team is on Monday when they visit Ash Grove.
9. West Plains, 4-0 (9)
The good news for West Plains is they are undefeated. The bad news… They have yet to be tested. The Lady Zizzers beat their first Class 4 team, Salem, on Monday 73-31. Andi Haney’s 30 points nearly outscored the Lady Tigers entire team. West Plains will be tested next week when they visit Jefferson City, followed by contests against MV-BT/Liberty and Branson.
10. Sparta, 7-0 (12)
Sparta continues to impress, despite losing all-state Mikalah Hardcastle. The Lady Trojans won last week’s New Covenant Tournament by defeating Class 5 Central 52-45. Sparta will visit Bradleyville and Hartville on Thursday and Monday respectively.
11. Chadwick, 4-1 (13)
Chadwick has won four straight games, all of which by 30+ points, since its season-opening loss to Marionville. The Lady Cardinals will host Lutie on Thursday before visiting Galena on Monday.
12. Skyline, 6-0 (15)
Skyline’s unbeaten start has been nothing less than impressive. The Lady Tigers picked up a 63-43 win over Buffalo Tuesday night to keep the dream alive. Coach Cheek’s team is idle until Saturday’s State Fair Shootout where they will take on Windsor.
13. Crane, 5-2 (NR)
Crane is the first of two teams making its inaugural appearance in our rankings. The Lady Pirates had an absolute gauntlet of a schedule last week, and nearly came away unscathed. Coach Mullin’s squad had a dynamite showing in last week’s Stephanie Phillips Classic, beating Parkview and Rogersville, and giving the host Chiefs all they could handle before falling 54-50. Crane then followed that up with a 45 point rout of Hollister. Next on the slate are visits to Billings and Cassville before that much anticipated rematch with Marionville.
14. Webb City, 5-2 (8)
Webb City joined Nixa in having a lackluster start to the Joplin Tournament. The Lady Cardinals lost to Harrison (Ark.) 48-47 in the opening round of the tournament. Webb City then followed that with a narrow defeat to Nixa before beating Joplin 56-20 to claim seventh place. Coach Shorter’s squad followed that up with a rematch of Joplin last night, also winning that game in a blowout. Webb City will visit East Newton on Thursday.
15. Morrisville, 7-0 (NR)
The Lady Panther’s make their first appearance in the power rankings, thanks to a red-hot 7-0 start in which they have defeated their opponents by an average of 36 points. Morrisville, which returned all five starters from last year’s team, will visit Pleasant Hope on Thursday. Coach Francka and company haven’t forgotten that Pleasant Hope ended their season last year.
Knockin’ on the door: Carthage (6-1), Weaubleau (5-0), Mount Vernon (3-3), Blue Eye (5-1), Branson (5-3), Purdy (6-1), Thayer (4-0), Seymour (6-1)
The schedule has been set for the 2013 Blue and Gold Tournament, held Dec. 26-30 on the campus of Missouri State University.
Here are some initial thoughts on the matchups to watch and how the bracket will play out.
The best first-round games...
It may be cold outside, but the action on the mats is heating up. After snow cancelled much of last week's prep slate, many area grapplers will kick off the 2013-14 season this week. This week's Chronicles will take a look at some of the Ozarks' best...
Mizzou fell to Auburn 59-42 on Saturday in the SEC Title Game. Here are five things I am taking away from the game.
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1. Auburn's rushing attack appears virtually...