Posted On: 03/1/18 12:34 PM
Can Sherman County win a 3rd straight title? Can top ranked Pacific break thru in their first trip to Baker City? Is there someone else in the field that can upset one of the two favorites? We take a detailed look at the 1A state tournament which tips off today in Baker City.
The Match Ups:
#9 Hosanna Christian (24-3) vs #1 Pacific (26-2)
A well rounded Hosanna team that likes to play at a fast pace and shoot a lot of three point shots takes on a Pacific team that has proven to to be the best team in 1A all season. It’s two losses were to state tournament teams from higher classes and they have a huge victory over Cascade Christian (a 3A quarterfinalist). The Pirates are lead by 6’8 post John Keeler, an under the radar prospect that can shoot the ball to range and is also a skilled passer and shot blocker.
#5 Nixyaawii (24-3) vs #4 Triad (21-6)
Nixy makes its regular appearance in the state tournament and brings an up tempo style of play to Baker. Triad brings a super athletic group lead by point guard Eli Builta to the dance. This match up should be an exciting up and down high scoring affair.
#14 Joseph (17-8) vs #11 Jordan Valley (22-4)
Joseph enters the quarterfinals as the #14 seed but in reality finished the season as the 22nd ranked in the final OSAA rankings. They pulled off two road upsets to make their way to Baker City. Their 17 wins are 4 less than anyone in the field. Jordan Valley comes to Baker having won 14 of their last 16 games, with both defeats coming at the hands of league champion Prairie City.
#7 Prairie City (21-3) vs #2 Sherman County (25-2)
The Panthers enter the quarterfinals with a ranking that may not recognize their talent level. They are lead by talented senior guard Dorran Wilson, who could get on college radars with a quality tournament performance. Their opponent is the two time defending state champions, who haven’t lost to a 1A program since the 2015 state tournament. Leading the way are 4 year starting point guard Jacob Justesen and wing Treve Martin.
Prep Hoops Prediction:
Pacific and Sherman County have been the clear class of 1A hoops this season and we don’t see anything standing in the way of those two squaring off Saturday night for the blue trophy. Sherman clearly has the state tourney experience edge, as many of their players have had key roles on two state title teams. Pacific features a talented group with the best big man in the state and are hungry to climb the mountain after being upset early in the playoffs last season. In what should be a great game between two veteran well coached teams, we expect the Pirates to escape from a hard fought battle to claim the first state title in school history.