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Kearney vs. Lincoln East, 1.2

Lincoln East’s Connor Riekenberg (15) shoots one of his five 3-pointers in the first half against Kearney on Wednesday during the Heartland Athletic Conference semifinal at Lincoln High School. 

Records through Saturday

Class A

Team (Rec.) | Pvs.

1. Bellevue West (11-1) | 3

2. Creighton Prep (10-1) | 1

3. Kearney (9-2) | 5

4. Lincoln East (8-2) | 2

5. Papillion-LV South (7-4) | 9

6. Omaha South (8-2) | 10

7. Omaha Central (7-5) | 6

8. Millard North (6-4) | 7

9. Lincoln High (8-3) | 8

10. Omaha Bryan (6-4) | -

Contenders: Omaha Westside, Gretna.

Comments: Preseason No. 1 Bellevue West is back on top after ending defending state champion Creighton Prep’s 27-game winning streak in the finals of the Metro Conference tournament. Westside is out after being upset by Omaha Burke in the Metro Conference first round. The Warriors had a chance to salvage a spot in the top 10 on Saturday but lost to Omaha Central. The ratings and records do not account for Monday’s Heartland Athletic Conference (HAC) final between Kearney and B No. 1 Lincoln Pius X. Both teams were locked in their ratings spot regardless of the outcome.

Key games: Tuesday--Bellevue West at Millard North, Lincoln North Star at Lincoln Southeast. Friday--Lincoln High at Lincoln Pius X, Omaha South at Creighton Prep, Lincoln East at Lincoln Southeast, Papillion-La Vista South at Papillion-La Vista. Saturday--Lincoln East at Omaha South, Omaha Central at Lincoln High, Creighton Prep at Lincoln Southeast.

Class B

1. Lincoln Pius X (9-1) | 2

2. Omaha Roncalli (8-2) | 8

3. Omaha Skutt (10-2) | 1

4. Aurora (9-1) | 3

5. York (10-1) | 4

6. Mt. Michael Bened. (8-2) | 9

7. Hastings (7-2) | 6

8. Seward (8-1) | 7

9. Bennington (7-3) | 5

10. Elkhorn (7-4) | -

Contenders: Alliance, Blair, Scottsbluff, Platteview.

Comments: Omaha Roncalli knocked off Omaha Skutt 65-62 on Friday behind five three-pointers and 28 points from Jack Dotzler, who is back from a broken wrist suffered during football season. Mount Michael is rewarded for its win over Hastings. Scottsbluff exits following a loss to Alliance, which beat three Class A Wyoming teams this past weekend in the Taco John’s Classic in Cheyenne to improve to 10-2 this season. 

Key games: Tuesday--Blair at Omaha Roncalli, Hastings at Aurora, York at Grand Island Central Catholic. Thursday--Blair at Omaha Skutt, Boys Town at Mount Michael. Friday--Mount Michael at Omaha Roncalli, McCook at Hastings.

Class C-1

1. Wahoo (8-3) | 1

2. Ogallala (11-0) | 8

3. Adams Central (8-3) | 2

4. Boys Town (6-4) | -

5. Bishop Neumann (7-4) | 3

6. North Bend Central (8-1) | 4

7. Cozad (10-1) | 5

8. Kearney Catholic (9-1) | 7

9. Ashland-Greenwood (7-2) | -

10. Auburn (10-1) | 6

Contenders: Grand Island Central Catholic, Lincoln Lutheran, Lincoln Christian, Broken Bow, Syracuse, Milford, Wayne.

Comments: Defending state champion Wahoo’s three losses are to B No. 4 Aurora, B No. 8 Seward and B No. 9 Bennington, so the Warriors will stay No. 1 until a C-1 school can knock them off. Ogallala, which handily beat both Cozad and Kearney Catholic in the past week, is perhaps the most interesting story in the state this season. The Indians, the lone undefeated team left in C-1, not only returned all five starters from last year’s state tournament team, but first-year head coach Andy Gillen added both his son, junior Carter Brown, and his nephew, senior Evan Allen-Mader, to the mix.

Key games: Tuesday--Boys Town at Lincoln Christian, Lexington at Kearney Catholic, Ashland-Greenwood at Platteview. Thursday--Wayne at North Bend Central, Broken Bow at Kearney Catholic. Friday--Wahoo at Platteview, Northwest at Adams Central. Saturday--Adams Central at Doniphan-Trumbull, Bishop Neumann vs. Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln (at Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs), North Bend Central at Archbishop Bergan, Cozad at Centura.

Class C-2

1. BRLD (9-1) | 7

2. Centennial (10-1) | 8

3. Sutton (9-1) | 2

4. Freeman (9-2) | 4

5. Wisner-Pilger (8-2) | -

6. Ponca (8-2) | 1

7. Yutan (7-3) | 5

8. Laurel-C-C (11-1) | 10

9. Tri County (8-3) | -

10. Wakefield (9-0) | -

Contenders: Doniphan-Trumbull, Lutheran High Northeast, Bridgeport, Shelby-Rising City, Wilber-Clatonia, Hartington Cedar Catholic, South Loup, Ainsworth, Howells-Dodge.

Comments: Wisner-Pilger coach Duane Mendlik not only picked up his state record 671st career win last week, but his Gators also knocked off two-time defending state champion Ponca to move into the ratings. BRLD also beat Ponca and impressively avenged its only loss of the season to Howells-Dodge to move to No. 1, while Centennial toppled Sutton to rise to No. 2.

Key games: Tuesday--Humphrey/LHF at Wisner-Pilger, Ponca at Wakefield, Wayne at Laurel-Concord-Coleridge, Centennial at Shelby-Rising City. Tuesday-Saturday--MUDECAS (Freeman, Tri County, Johnson-Brock, Falls City Sacred Heart, Exeter-Milligan). Friday--Malcolm at Yutan, Wisner-Pilger at Howells-Dodge, BRLD at Oakland-Craig.

Class D-1

1. Fullerton (7-3) | 1

2. Kenesaw (6-1) | 2

3. Archbishop Bergan (9-3) | 3

4. Paxton (9-0) | 4

5. Elm Creek (10-1) | 5

6. Humphrey/LHF (8-2) | 6

7. Wilcox-Hildreth (7-3) | 7

8. Boyd County (7-2) | 8

9. Anselmo-Merna (8-2) |9

10. Dundy County-Stratton (8-2) | 10

Contenders: Overton, Clearwater-Orchard, Wauneta-Palisade, West Holt, Ansley-Litchfield.

Comments: No clear patterns emerged the last two weeks with so many teams losing to schools in different classes and complete holiday tournaments wiped out because of weather. So the top 10 stays the same for now.

Key games: Tuesday--Giltner at Kenesaw, Ainsworth at Boyd County. Thursday--Neligh-Oakdale at Humphrey/Lindsay Holy Family. Friday--Kenesaw at Lawrence-Nelson, Humphrey/LHF at Clearwater-Orchard, Loomis at Wilcox-Hildreth. Saturday--Elm Creek at Kenesaw.

Class D-2

1. Johnson-Brock (11-0) | 1

2. Falls City SH (11-1) | 2

3. Riverside (8-0) | 3

4. Osmond (10-0) | 4

5. Humphrey SF (9-3) | 5

6. Exeter-Milligan (9-2) | 6

7. Mullen (7-3) | 7

8. Wynot (7-3) | 8

9. Loomis (6-3) | -

10. Giltner (6-4) |-

Contenders: Mead, Lawrence-Nelson, Stuart, Sterling, Parkview Christian.

Comments: Sacred Heart’s loss is to Mounds City, Missouri, which is rated No. 7 in Missouri Class 1 and is 11-0 this season. If they both win in Tuesday’s first round, Johnson-Brock and Sacred Heart will meet in the MUDECAS semifinals on Thursday.

Key games: Tuesday--Neligh-Oakdale at Osmond.

Reach the writer at 402-473-7437 or rpowell@journalstar.com. On Twitter @ronpowell_ljs.

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Sports reporter

Ron Powell is a longtime prep writer for the Journal Star. He covers high school football, boys basketball and track as well as state college football and Husker and professional tennis.

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