High School Basketball

(KMAland) -- It’s here, it’s here, it’s here! The postseason – or KMA/Agrivision Equipment Tournament Trail – is here. On behalf of the KMA Sports family, we are really excited for this next month of basketball. My hope is to bring you a daily dive into what’s happened and what’s coming in the KMAland Tournament Trail.

Here’s your Day 1 rundown…

There are 20 games tonight in the Class 1A regional first round. Let’s rank them, using the BCMoore projections as a guide.

1. 1A-7 – No. 82 Bedford (6-15) at No. 81 Lenox (9-12): How about this one? Two concurrent teams in the rankings will meet for the third time tonight. The Pride of Iowa Conference rivals played on December 6th and January 14th – both Lenox wins. The first of those games is one we can maybe draw a bit more from, considering that was played without TJ Stoaks (as tonight likely will, too). That was a seven-point Tigers victory. Will history repeat itself? Either way, BCMoore’s system loves the matchup. BCMoore Projection: Lenox by 1.99.

2. 1A-8 – No. 100 Riverside (3-18) at No. 108 Heartland Christian (11-10): Sometimes the best things come when you’re least expecting it. This should be one of the closest games in the area tonight. The two actually just played one another five days ago, and it was Riverside nabbing the 39-36 victory (also played in CB). HC has had an overall solid season in their first year outside of the Corner Conference, but they’ve struggled lately with three straight losses. Riverside, of course, was one of those losses. The Bulldogs had some key girls decide not to go out this year, and they’ve struggled to find their footing throughout the year. However, two of their three wins have come in the month of February. Could a third be in the offing? BCMoore Projection: Riverside by 2.74.

3. 1A-8 – No. 56 Woodbine (11-10) at No. 50 Boyer Valley (11-10): This is the kind of first-round fun I can get behind. The two RVC rivals meet for a third time tonight, they have the same record and the loser has their season come to a finish. Boyer Valley won both meetings – by 12 on December 17th and by 4 on January 28th. The Tigers have been playing their best ball of late, winning their last four, five of their last six and nine of their last 12. Boyer Valley has won four of their last seven. Something gives and someone goes tonight in one of the top matchups in KMAland. BCMoore Projection: Boyer Valley by 3.90.

4. 1A-7 – No. 49 Southwest Valley (9-12) at No. 42 East Mills (13-6): This is our AM 960 game tonight. East Mills – and their band of frosh (I wonder if they call Alex Knop “mom”) – have played really well of late in winning four of their last five. And they nearly spoiled Sidney’s Corner Conference title party, forcing OT before a 42-40 loss. And heck, they’ve pretty well been in every single game this year. Southwest Valley, meanwhile, has lost four straight, but three of them came to Central Decatur, Sidney and Red Oak. This is a rematch from a regional volleyball semifinal earlier this year. Same spot, too. Same broadcasters, too. BCMoore Projection: East Mills by 5.80.

5. 1A-6 – No. 99 Moulton-Udell (9-11) at No. 92 Seymour (15-6): The rebuilding year for Seymour was more of a reloading year. The Warriorettes lost a great senior class last year, but they’ve still been plenty good. They’ve also won five straight and eight of their last nine. One of their six losses, interestingly enough, came to Moulton-Udell to open the year on December 3rd. They got them back on December 13th and haven’t played since then. The rubber match comes tonight. BCMoore Projection: Seymour by 6.19.

6. 1A-8 – No. 74 Ar-We-Va (5-15) at No. 60 Glidden-Ralston (9-12): The two Rolling Valley Conference mates split their two conference meetings this year. Ar-We-Va won at Glidden by 15 on December 20th while the Wildcats nabbed a two-point win at Westside on January 31st. I would expect this one to come down to the wire, too, although it’s worth noting that G-R has found their stride with six wins in their last eight. The Rockets have lost 12 of their last 13 with six of those losses within what I will call “winning distance.” BCMoore Projection: Glidden-Ralston by 7.09.

7. 1A-7 – No. 62 Fremont-Mills (9-11) at No. 37 Sidney (13-7): This game will be on FM 99.1 tonight, and it’s the fourth time these two Corner Conference rivals have squared off. Fremont-Mills won the first one by 3 on December 17th and then lost the last two by 16 and 33 on January 22nd and 31st, respectively. F-M has faced a tough schedule down the stretch and has lost six of their last eight. Meanwhile, Sidney is on a six-game win streak, including a Corner-clinching win over East Mills in overtime on Tuesday. Their only loss since January 20th was in the Corner final when they didn’t have Maddy Duncan. Unless she is frozen by this ridiculous weather, they will have her tonight. BCMoore Projection: Sidney by 13.10.

8. 1A-8 – No. 79 Coon Rapids-Bayard (4-17) at No. 48 Paton-Churdan (13-8): The two Rolling Valley Conference rivals get together for a third time. Paton-Churdan won the two previous meetings by 22 and 9. That latest win jump-started a seven-game win streak for the Rockets, which then lost their final two games of the season. CRB is another team with a number of tight losses this year, as they have seven losses by single digits and two others by 10. Could they give Paton-Churdan a run tonight? BCMoore Projection: Paton-Churdan by 14.53.

9. 1A-6 – No. 91 East Union (6-15) at No. 68 Lamoni (18-2): The Bluegrass Conference champion plays host to an East Union team that they beat by 7 back on January 6th. The Demons only losses this year came to Central Decatur and Grand View Christian. East Union has won two of their past three, but they’ve also had a four-game stretch where they were four points away from a four-game win streak entering this game. Sneaky tough game to open the tournament for an 18-2 team. BCMoore Projection: Lamoni by 15.55

10. 1A-6 – No. 103 Moravia (8-13) at No. 73 Wayne (11-10): Moravia actually comes into this thing with a bit of momentum, having won three of their last four, including solid wins over Murray and Melcher-Dallas. The Mohawks have grown into their junior-heavy lineup and should be very solid next year. Wayne’s sophomore class continues to stir the drink for the Falcons, which have won five of their last nine. BCMoore Projection: Wayne by 21.33

11. 1A-6 – No. 55 Grand View Christian (11-10) at No. 98 Melcher-Dallas (9-11): Not a bad year for Melcher-Dallas, which will be even better next year when they return their top six scorers. They’ve gone 5-4 in their final nine games, but they’ve yet to see this Grand View Christian team that is probably better than the 11-10 record looks. BCMoore Projection: Grand View Christian by 21.51

12. 1A-8 – No. 102 Griswold (2-17) at No. 32 CAM, Anita (14-6): Interesting year for CAM, which came off a state tournament appearance, lost two of their greatest players ever and then promptly won 13 of their first 15 games. The struggle has been real of late, though, with losses in four of their last five. They had a nice get-right game to snap Paton-Churdan’s win streak earlier this week. In comes Griswold tonight – a team that lost one of their top players (Jocelyn Amos) to injury before the season even began. They’ve struggled to score, but they will return their top six scoring options next year. BCMoore Projection: CAM by 39.08.

13. 1A-8 – No. 93 West Harrison (1-20) at No. 19 Westwood (13-8): West Harrison is a decidedly better team than their 1-20 record. BCMoore’s rankings say they’re better than about 27 other 1A schools that may or may not have more wins. Their only problem has been closing out a win, as they’ve lost three really tight games down the stretch that could have boosted their record – and potentially even kept them out of this game. The Rebels have played the 13th-toughest 1A slate, won five of their last seven and have a standout freshman Jaeden Ferris (15.4 PPG) that’s worth keeping an eye on. BCMoore Projection: Westwood by 41.05.

14. 1A-7 – No. 110 Diagonal (9-12) at No. 29 Stanton (19-2): The Viqueens have revamped and reloaded their lineup, and it has led to a major breakout season. Their only two losses are to Sidney, and they haven’t lost a single game since January 14th. During their 10-game win streak, they’ve run off wins over Southwest Valley, East Mills twice, Sidney, CAM, F-M and Lenox. Pretty solid run. Diagonal, meanwhile, has five wins in their last eight and also have a slew of freshmen that have contributed plenty. BCMoore Projection: Stanton by 45.14.

15. 1A-6 – No. 105 Murray (8-13) at No. 23 Martensdale-St. Marys (14-8): The Blue Devils are experienced and loaded with talent. They could make a deep run in this bracket, and it starts tonight with a pretty young Murray team. The Mustangs have probably done even better than many expected them to do, considering the question marks coming in. This is a very tough one for them. BCMoore Projection: Martensdale-St. Marys by 46.34.

16. 1A-7 – No. 104 Orient-Macksburg (10-11) at No. 20 Audubon (14-7): The Wheelers are going to be a really tough out for anybody in this bracket. They’ve played a top 30 schedule in 1A, going toe-to-toe with some really strong WIC schools all year. The Bulldogs have had a really nice season, especially during a stretch from January 21st through February 11th when they won five of six. Since then, though, they’ve dropped three straight. Can they re-find it? BCMoore Projection: Audubon by 48.69.

17. 1A-6 – No. 111 Twin Cedars (5-17) at No. 24 Lynnville-Sully (13-6): Twin Cedars makes the short 41.5-mile trip north to Lynnville for this one. The Sabers have actually won three of their last five after just two wins in in their first 12. Lynnville-Sully has a bunch of juniors and seniors while Twin Cedars will play plenty of freshmen and sophomores tonight. BCMoore Projection: Lynnville-Sully by 49.02.

18. 1A-6 – No. 120 Ankeny Christian Academy (0-16) at No. 88 Southeast Warren (9-13): The Warhawks have had some success this year, including a 6-5 mark in their last 11 games. These two met back on November 25th – the opening game for both teams – and it was SEW winning by 42 points. As it stands right now, we don’t know for sure that this game will happen tonight since SEW didn’t have school. BCMoore Projection: Southeast Warren by 58.67.

19. 1A-7 – No. 113 Essex (2-14) at No. 9 St. Albert (9-11): The Saintes had a run this year that had them in the KMAland 1A/2A No. 1 spot. While they’ve lost eight of their last nine, it’s worth noting they have played the No. 2 schedule in 1A. Only George-Little Rock can claim a tougher slate. I think you’re about to see a really nice boost for Coach Dick Wettengel’s squad, as they try to navigate through their 1A bracket. Essex has had a tough go of it this year, but they have won their past two games. Regardless of tonight, that’s a little positive momentum moving forward. BCMoore Projection: St. Albert by 63.55.

20. 1A-7 – No. 118 Mormon Trail (1-20) at No. 21 Central Decatur (17-3): Central Decatur is another team playing a first round game that has a good shot at making a deep run. Mormon Trail’s lone win came against the aforementioned Ankeny Christian Academy, and CD is decidedly not ACA. Not with their combination of talent, experience and length. The Cardinals have won eight straight, and they’ve beat Van Meter, Martensdale-St. Marys twice, Wayne and Centerville during this great stretch. They also own wins over Des Moines Christian and Lamoni. Watch out for Coach Boothe’s group. BCMoore Projection: Central Decatur by 70.79.

Again, we’ll be on from Malvern and Sidney tonight. Follow us for Barrett Auto Center Tournament Trail tweets @d2mart (East Mills/SWV) and @TrevMaeder96 (Sidney/FM).

Send any questions, comments and/or concerns to dmartin@kmaland.com.