STATE TOP 20 OVERALL
(All divisions combined; after games of March 9; last week's rank in parentheses)
1. (1) Westchester (Los Angeles) 30-2
Four Comet seniors and three juniors may one day be in the NCAA tourney, just as Comet alums David Bluthenthal and Brandon Granville will be this week for USC.
2. (2) Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 29-4
No word on whether coach Gary McKnight has received any thank-you gifts from Lincoln High of Dallas. MD's win over Oak Hill (Va.) in February turned out to be the difference between No. 1 and No. 2 nationally for Oak Hill.
3. (4) Poly (Long Beach) 30-3
Watch out, Westchester. The last four games by the Jackrabbits vs. Capo Valley, Eisenhower, Loyola and Fairfax shows they're very capable of knocking off the state's No. 1 team.
4. (5) Technical (Oakland) 27-3
If Bulldogs and Westchester both win region crowns this week, results from the City of Palms tourney in Florida will become valuable as both teams were in that event.
5. (3) Fairfax (Los Angeles) 30-5
Strong season for the Lions ended in loss to Long Beach Poly. They had wins over several top teams outside the state and three of their losses were to Westchester.
6. (6) Horizon (San Diego) 27-4
Panthers haven't always played as well outside San Diego County as they have inside, but this week's opponent, Garces, has a long way to go Saturday, too.
7. (9) De La Salle (Concord) 27-4
Three straight trips to the NorCal Div. I finals says a lot about the program head coach Frank Allocco is building.
8. (11) M.L. King (Riverside) 29-4
Who would have thought before the season that the Wolves would be the top-ranked team from the Inland Empire (ahead of Ike, Centennial, etc.)? A good effort vs. Mater Dei would ensure that.
9. (14) Garces (Bakersfield) 29-4
You keep hearing about big soph Robert Swift, but every game it's a different Ram who steps up and leads them in scoring.
10. (12) Centennial (Compton) 30-1
If the Apaches win on Saturday vs. Bishop Montgomery, they could climb back up as high as No. 6 in next week's rankings.
11. (7) Clovis West (Fresno) 28-4
Even after satisfying season, there are rumblings around town that Eagles' coach Vance Walberg might be interested in moving on to a college job.
12. (18) Bishop Montgomery (Torrance) 28-6
Give a lot of credit to coach Doug Mitchell, who has the Knights back among state's elite even after the Craven twins graduated.
13. (10) Eisenhower (Rialto) 27-4
With Sean Marshall coming back next year, look for the Eagles to be listed regularly in the state rankings once again.
14. (19) Sacred Heart Cathedral (S.F.) 29-4
Is it better to have two easy wins or two tough wins coming into a big game like the one the Irish will have vs. Riordan? Ask again at about 1:30 p.m. Saturday.
15. (nr) Riordan (San Francisco) 29-4
All the concerns about the Crusaders not looking good in wins vs. Enterprise and Foothill will be completely forgotten if they turn it on for one game this week and one game next week.
16. (13) St. Mary's (Berkeley) 28-4
Biggest wins of the season turned out to be against Modesto Christian, Vallejo, Oak Grove and O'Dowd.
17. (8) Redondo (Redondo Beach) 24-7 Hard to figure the Seahawks' up-and-down season. Some of it was due to inconsistent play from some players, most of it was due to injuries and their after-effects.
18. (nr) Pasadena 27-6
Quality win in CIFSS semis vs. Inglewood, regional playoff road win over Stockdale and decent showings in two losses to Mater Dei put Bulldogs into the top 20.
19. (15) Verbum Dei (Los Angeles) 28-4
The Central Section wasn't kind to the Eagles as they hung on to just nip S.J. Memorial and lost by nine to Garces.
20. (nr) Oakland 21-8
One of Wildcats' league losses to Oakland Tech was by just five points. They also beat Modesto Christian twice and St. Mary's of Berkeley once.