Three New York Teams In Top 4

Niagara Falls, St. Mary's and Christ the King High Schools hold down the two through four slots in's latest top 25 poll.

Oak Hill Academy (Va.) remains in the top spot, while No. 14 St. Patrick (N.J.) made news as it welcomed back star junior power forward Derrick Caracter to its lineup.

Rankings as of Jan. 10, 2005

1. Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) – (15-1) *1
Oak Hill didn't play last week and resumes play against Forbush (East Bend, N.C.) on Jan. 13.

2. Niagara Falls (Niagara Falls, N.Y.) – (10-0) *2
Niagara Falls defeated North Tonawanda, 94-40, last week as junior shooting guard Paul Harris had 28 points, 12 rebounds and six assists. The Wolverines' undefeated start could be put in jeopardy when it takes on undefeated Canisius in the Martin Luther King Memorial Basketball Showcase in Buffalo on Jan. 17.

3. St. Mary's (Manhasset, N.Y.) – (10-0) *3
The Gaels crushed St. Dominic and St. John the Baptist last week. Senior shooting guard Danny Green had 25 points, 12 boards and six assists in the 77-56 win over St. Dominic.

4. Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) – (10-1) *4
Christ the King earned two victories last week, including a 64-54 win over Holy Cross in which senior forward Akeem Gooding scored a game-high 20 points.

5. Lawrence North (Indianapolis, Ind.) – (8-1) *5
Junior center Greg Oden and senior guard Zack Stewart each scored 13 points to lead Lawrence North to a 54-49 win over Franklin Central.

6. South Gwinnett (Snellville, Ga.) – (12-1) *6
The Comets cruised past Central Gwinnett, 90-65, last week.

7. Putnam City (Oklahoma City, Okla.) – (10-0) *7
Senior shooting guard C.J. Henry scored 27 points to help Putnam City to a 69-57 win over John Marshall in the semifinals of the Putnam City Invitational.

8. Benton Harbor (Benton Harbor, Mich.) – (8-0) *8
Senior forward Wilson Chandler recorded 22 points and six boards as Benton Harbor defeated Niles, 83-45.

9. Arlington (Indianapolis, Ind.) – (10-0) *9
Among Arlington's two victories last week was a 61-55 win over Bishop Chatard. Senior guard Deonta Vaughn scored a game-high 28 points, including 14 in the fourth quarter.

10. Thornton (Harvey, Ill.) – (15-0) *10
Thornton defeated Thornwood, 54-42, behind 12 points and 10 rebounds from double-double machine and junior center Joevan Catron.

11. St. Anthony (Jersey City, N.J.) – (7-1) *11
Despite not having any scorers reach double figures, St. Anthony held off Christian Brothers, 40-37, to win the final game of the Scholarship Fund for Inner-City Children Basketball Festival.

12. Rice (New York, N.Y.) – (9-0) *12
Rice rolled to three victories last week, including a 78-62 win over Bishop Loughlin in which junior power forward Curtis Kelly had 26 points and seven rebounds and junior point guard Edgar Sosa added 16 points.

13. East Hall (Gainesville, Ga.) – (14-0) *14
East Hall's three wins last week included an 89-74 win over rival Gainesville. Senior Brody Langston scored 23 points, including the 1,000th of his career, in the win, while senior Frank Davis added 21 points.

14. St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.) – (8-1) *15
Junior power forward Derrick Caracter made his season debut against St. Benedict's Prep last week and had 15 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks to lead St. Patrick to the 53-44 win. Caracter is rated the No. 2 overall recruit in the Class of 2006 by

15. Vashon (St. Louis, Mo.) – (12-0) *16
Vashon didn't play last week and resumes play against East St. Louis on Jan. 17.

16. Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville, Fla.) – (11-2) *17
Arlington Country Day was idle last week.

17. Westchester (Los Angeles, Calif.) – (5-2) *18
Westchester didn't play last week. The Comets resume play against Palisades tonight.

18. DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) – (11-1) *19
DeMatha won three games last week. Senior forward Mamadi Diane had 17 points, seven steals, four assists and three rebounds in the Stags' 81-51 drubbing of Archbishop Carroll (Washington, D.C.).

19. St. Joseph (Westchester, Ill.) – (13-0) *20
Senior point guard Tony Freeman scored a game-high 24 points and junior guard Jonathan Peoples stuffed the stat sheet for 10 points, nine rebounds, seven assists and six steals as St. Joseph defeated Marist, 68-54.

20. Etiwanda (Etiwanda, Calif.) – (14-1) *13
Etiwanda crushed Alta Loma, 79-33, last week, but lost to Dominguez, 58-53, in the Pangos Dream Classic.

21. Montrose Christian (Rockville, Md.) – (12-1) *21
Montrose Christian victories include an 85-47 win over Theodore Roosevelt (Washington, D.C.). Senior power forward Uche Echefu knocked down 9-of-12 shots en route to 20 points and added 12 boards in the win. Echefu is rated the No. 52 overall recruit in the Class of 2005 by

22. Neumann-Goretti (Philadelphia, Pa.) – (12-0) *22
Junior forward Earl Pettis scored 16 points in Neumann-Goretti's 66-58 win over Roman Catholic. It was one of three victories for Neumann-Goretti last week.

23. Mount Vernon (Mount Vernon, N.Y.) – (9-1) *23
Power forward Jonathan Mitchell scored a team-high 16 points in a 73-61 win over New Rochelle and George Barrow scored a team-high 14 points in a 103-33 victory over Saunders Trades & Tech as Mount Vernon stretched its winning streak to five games.

24. Palm Beach Lakes (West Palm Beach, Fla.) – (11-2) *24
Palm Beach Lakes enjoyed a terrific holiday break and enters its local schedule with an impressive 11-2 mark.

25. Steele Canyon (Spring Valley, Calif.) – (13-0) *25
Steele Canyon pushed its record to 13-0 with a 69-55 win over Muir. George Cunningham led Steele Canyon with 26 points while Richie Williams chipped in with 22 points and 10 assists.

Dropped Out:


* previous ranking

To get more information on the nation's top teams, including in-depth preseason rankings on the Top 50 teams in the nation and the Top 20 teams in each region, check out our 2005 HS Hoops yearbook. Once again, SchoolSports and the Sporting News have combined forces on this annual preview which includes in-depth player rankings and analysis for the Class of 2005, 2006 and 2007 and features on some of the top prep players in the country.

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