HIGH SCHOOL THOUGHTS WITH THE POST SEASON AT HAND

     The girls high school basketball tournament begins next week and so does the state high school hockey championships. 

     In basketball, East Lansing's girls are 19-0 and they should win handily at Everett Friday night to close their season.  They're the favorites to win class A after making it to the state championship game last March in Ypsilanti.  DeWitt's girls are also gifted and after these two I don't see any other area girls teams making a tournament run.  East Lansing is hosting its own district and if it plays Okemos a third time, East Lansing will win handily again.  Okemos knows it can't beat East Lansing, simple as that.

     The boys don't begin their tournament until March 9th.  Okemos is the surprise team of the area and Holt is the one coming on the fastest.  Holt and Okemos could meet in the opening game of the Regionals and while Okemos won the two regular season games it would be difficult in game three.    That's providing Okemos, which hosts its own district, can beat Eastern in the opening game on March 9th.  Okemos has beaten Eastern twice, albeit by close margins.  Eastern has lost three in a row and has fallen to 11-6 and another loss could be at hand when the Quakers host 14-3 Sexton Friday night.

     In CAAC hockey, Grand Ledge/Waverly will receive the league title trophy Saturday after their game at Jackson, which has no bearing left for the title and Grand Ledge/Waverly should win the game easily.  But Grand Ledge/Waverly again has a difficult tournament draw and like all other CAAC teams of recent years, they may go out early in the tournament.

     The CAAC hockey league has nine teams and Lansing Catholic likely will have to merge with someone next season or go out of business.  The league is plagued by a lack of balance-- each year some are very good and others are non competitive.  The league needs to figure a competitive balance to make the competition fair.  Last year Lansing Catholic had a good team but couldn't replenish its roster after its losses.  The Cougars are currently 3-18 and have also given up 24 straight goals in their last three conseeuctive 8-0 mercy losses.  East Lansing had the same problem a year ago, then merged with Haslett to be known as Eastside.  But it's an ongoing problem for various teams.

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