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Posted On: 05/30/18 6:00 PM
Who at the 17u level is making the push to the Elite Eight at #NHRState? We give you our thoughts at NHR right now!
Comets K. The top seed in the event has a pair of fairly tough games against UVA Tate and the winner of Pharaohs/Bulldogs. Comets K has played better team hoops than anyone in this event this spring and as you can see by the “Top 50 2019s at State” article they have a strong core of talent too. The pressure is on though, this is your event favorite and top seed so expectations are very high.
Southwest MN Stars. The Stars have been through a tough schedule playing in the SPTS this spring so they will be more battle tested than most. Heat Henderson is a tough opponent but without their top guy the Stars – who won this event last year – are the favorite to get to the Elite Eight. They can’t overlook UVA Stan though who has a couple good players.
Heat MacDonald. Another SPTS team and of course a top ten squad in Minnesota, Heat MacDonald is another event favorite. This squad has several guys that have played many games together and they are coming off some big wins in May in the SPTS. D1 Rise with Jake Kettner could be a tough beat though.
Select Leafblad. This is one of the tougher choices because Mentality Minnesota has been playing very good basketball as of late. They may actually be a deeper team than Select Leafblad but Select has faced tougher competition in the NY2LA Basketball League and SPTS. Plus Malik Willingham is a game changer.
Heat Nelson. Heat Nelson has performed impressively at the Proving Grounds, they won the Heat event, played well at the Comets Shootout, and overall have earned their way into the top ten. The toughness of Rip City could give them trouble but Heat Nelson’s track record makes them the likely Elite Eight candidate.
Crossfire Belle. The Crossfire squad is a group that plays well together and for years has been competing against good talent and getting wins. We feel like they have a very strong shot at playing in the Elite Eight.
SE Minnesota Lightning. You have to give the Lightning their due at several levels. It seems like every Minnesota event a Lightning team is making a run. This 17u group with Minnesota kids and Iowa players grabbed the attention of many when they made the Proving Grounds Final Four.
TC Pirates. The Pirates have more name talent than anybody in this event but they have not put together the results they have hoped to so far. This could be their big weekend to make a name for themselves. That said, Comets DLR could say the exact same thing and the Pirates have to go through them. Comets DLR is in the NY2LA League as well so their record has been against tough teams.