Springfield, Mo. (OzarksSportsZone.com) -- Republic and Walnut Grove continue their reign atop the Power Rankings this week. Three teams that were previously unranked jump into the rankings this week.
1. Republic, 11-0 (1)
As the season continues, it is beginning to become more of an “if” than “when” in regards to the Lady Tigers' first loss. Republic hiked its winning streak to 17 straight last week with a pair of impressive wins against Westminster Christian and Carthage. Sarah Kreul and company step out of conference next week to host the streaking Marshfield Lady Blue Jays.
2. Walnut Grove, 11-1 (2)
The Lady Tigers picked up a pair of wins over Hermitage and a very good Morrisville squad, extending their winning streak to nine straight on the season. Walnut Grove is entering its toughest stretch of the season, as the Lady Tigers host a pair of titans in nonconference action this week with Marshfield and Crane.
3. Ash Grove, 12-3 (4)
Ash Grove bounced back from a pair of tough losses in the Pink & White with a runaway 60-34 win at Miller on Monday. The Lady Pirates visit Chadwick on Thursday before taking on Aurora in the quarterfinals of the Bolivar Tournament. Ash Grove beat Aurora 78-46 back on December 13.
4. Crane, 13-3 (5)
The Lady Pirates continue to build on the momentum gained from an impressive run at the Pink and White, going 2-0 last week with a pair of home wins over Fordland and Blue Eye in SWCL play. Crane will host Galena in another SWCL tilt, before visiting Walnut Grove on Monday in a nonconference showdown.
5. Ozark, 9-4 (3)
Ozark continued its brutal nonconference schedule last Saturday when the Lady Tigers visited Parkway South, No. #6 in Class 5. Although they lost that game, the Lady Tigers bounced back with a COC opening win at Webb City. Coach Little’s team will challenge itself again on Thursday when they host Columbia Rock Bridge, the No. 2 team in Class 5.
6. Skyline, 14-2 (6)
Skyline has been one of the area’s hottest teams in the last month, and continued that trend with a pair of blow out wins over Strafford and Conway. The Lady Tigers topped Weaubleau to advance to the championship game of the Skyline Tournament where they will match up with Mid-Lakes foe Fair Grove.
7. West Plains, 13-1 (7)
West Plains opened Ozark Conference play Monday with a rout of visiting Camdenton 64-38. The Lady Zizzers will take the rest of the week off before visiting Kickapoo. The winner will have the inside track to the OC title.
8. Nixa, 12-2 (8)
Nixa picked up a COC opening victory Monday night by beating Neosho on the road. The Lady Eagles will step out of conference play to visit state-ranked Columbia Rock Bridge before hosting Jefferson City on Monday.
9. Marionville, 10-4 (11)
The Lady Comets snapped a two game losing streak with a blowout 52-14 win over Clever. Marionville opens its Mid-Lakes slate Thursday when they host Strafford. Marionville is also the top seed in its tournament, which tips off next week.
10. Dadeville, 11-0 (12)
Dadeville joins Republic as the only two undefeated teams in the area. The Lady Bearcats are still yet to have a game decided by less than 12 points. Don’t expect that to change anytime in the near future.
11. Webb City, 11-3 (9)
The Lady Cardinals had their eight-game winning streak snapped last week when they dropped their conference opener to Ozark 58-54. Webb City steps out of conference play on Friday to host the Nevada Lady Tigers.
12. Seymour, 12-2 (NR)
The Lady Tigers make their first appearance in the poll after winning last weekend’s Sparta Tournament. Seymour, who lost four starters from last year’s final four team, has won five straight games and is getting better by the day. Coach Frank’s team is led by senior standouts Braythan Helms (18 ppg) and Randi Deckard (15 ppg), and the dominating interior play of junior Sarah Cook who is averaging 12 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks per game. The Lady Tigers visit Catholic on Thursday before jumping back into Summit League play against Conway on Monday.
13. Weaubleau, 11-2 (10)
The Lady Tigers have dropped two games since the turn of the New Year, that’s the bad news. The good news, both opponents, El Dorado Springs and Skyline, were larger class and won’t figure into Weaubleau’s Final Four hopes. The Lady Tigers will have a rematch with El Do in the third place of the Skyline Tournament before settling into PCL play. Also, Weaubleau senior Dana Graves is just 30 points away from 1,000 for her career.
14. Thayer, 11-1 (NR)
The Lady Bobcats are also making their first showing in the poll. Thayer has won 11 straight games since opening the season with a 65-62 loss at Alton. Thayer returns three starters from last year’s team and is led by a trio of guards in senior Emily Eckman, junior Elly Burrell, and sophomore Jordan Alford. Coach Chester’s squad continues South Central Association play Thursday when they visit Mountain Grove.
15. Chadwick, 11-4 (NR)
Chadwick is back in the poll after a two-week hiatus. The Lady Cardinals four losses are tied for the most in the poll; however none of these losses came to a similarly sized school for Chadwick (Marionville, Pleasant Hope, Southwest, Seymour). However, if you remove those four losses the Lady Cardinals have outscored their opponents by an average of 39 points per game. Chadwick has received a huge junior season from guard Maddie Hursh who is averaging 23 points per game and has a legitimate shot to break Addy Roller’s state record for single-season three-pointers.
Knockin’ on the door: Southwest (11-3), Morrisville (11-3), Bolivar (8-3), Branson (10-5), Pleasant Hope (10-4), Sparta (11-3), Carthage (10-3).