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Lincoln Southwest vs. Kearney, 1.2

Lincoln Southwest's bench erupts with excitement as they take the lead over Kearney in the fourth quarter Wednesday during the Heartland Athletic Conference semifinals at Lincoln Southeast High School

Records through Saturday

CLASS A

Team (Rec.) | Pvs

1. Papillion-La Vista (14-1) | 1

2. Omaha Westside (12-3) | 3

3. Millard North (9-3) | 7

4. Millard South (11-2) | 2

5. Lincoln Pius X (9-3) | 6

6. Lincoln Southwest (12-2) | 9

7. Fremont (10-3) | 5

8. Omaha Northwest (8-6) | 8

9. Millard West (6-5) | 4

10. Omaha Benson (8-2) | 10

Contenders: Lincoln East, Lincoln Northeast, Kearney, Omaha Burke.

Comments: We'll just keep saying it: Class A is wide open. There is probably 12 teams that are talented enough to beat anybody on any given night. On Saturday, Millard North rallied to beat Millard South while top-ranked Papillion-La Vista needed a free throw with 0.8 seconds remaining to beat ratings contender Lincoln Northeast. Lincoln Southwest jumps to sixth after a six-point win at Fremont. Those two teams will meet again for the Heartland Athletic Conference Tournament title on Jan. 22 at LSW. Millard West drops after a one-point loss to Omaha Burke, though the Wildcats did not have Chaise Pfanstiel in that contest.

Key games: Thursday--Lincoln Pius X at Kearney, Omaha Burke at Millard North; Friday--Millard West at Millard South, Lincoln Northeast at Lincoln Southwest, Fremont at Omaha Burke, Omaha Benson at Elkhorn South; Saturday--Kearney at Lincoln Southwest, Elkhorn South at Omaha Northwest.

CLASS B

Team (Rec.) | Pvs

1. Waverly (11-0) | 1

2. Seward (9-2) | 2

3. Omaha Skutt (10-4) | 4

4. Norris (6-5) | 5

5. Northwest (10-4) | 3

6. South Sioux City (9-5) | 6

7. Crete (8-4) | 7

8. Elkhorn South (5-9) | 8

9. Elkhorn (8-3) | 9

10. Sidney (13-2) | 10

Contenders: Beatrice, North Platte, Omaha Gross, Platteview.

Comments: Snow put the No. 1 Waverly-No. 2 Seward showdown on hold (Makeup date appears set for Jan. 31 in Seward). Northwest owns wins in December against Omaha Skutt and Norris, but drops to fifth after a loss to C-1 Adams Central, and a week after losing to C-1 Columbus Lakeview. Elkhorn South is not penalized for losses to Millard South and Lincoln Southwest, two of the top teams in Class A. The Storm nearly knocked off Southwest on Saturday.

Key games: Monday-Saturday--River Cities Conference Tournament (South Sioux City, Omaha Skutt, Beatrice, Omaha Gross); Tuesday--Seward at Crete; Friday--Waverly at Platteview, Omaha Benson at Elkhorn South; Saturday--Elkhorn South at Omaha Northwest.

CLASS C-1

Team (Rec.) | Pvs.

1. Wahoo (14-0) | 1

2. Bishop Neumann (12-2) | 2

3. Louisville (13-1) | 4

4. Aquinas (11-2) | 9

5. Mitchell (14-1) | 5

6. Grand Island CC (11-2) | 3

7. West Point-Beemer (13-1) | 7

8. Lincoln Christian (8-5) | 6

9. Adams Central (11-3) | -

10. Columbus Lakeview (11-3) | 8

Contenders: Auburn, Columbus Scotus, Kearney Catholic, Milford, Ogallala. 

Comments: Aquinas makes the biggest move after beating then-No. 3 GICC and then-No. 8 Columbus Lakeview on back-to-back days. It doesn't get any easier for the Monarchs, who have games against Hastings St. Cecilia and Kearney Catholic this week. Meanwhile, Adams Central checks in at No. 9 after picking up a signature win against Class B Northwest, while Louisville outlasted Lincoln Christian in overtime on the road to move up a spot.

Key games: Tuesday--Milford at Columbus Lakeview; Friday--Hastings SC at Aquinas; Saturday--Grand Island CC at Adams Central; Aquinas at Kearney Catholic, Fillmore Central at Lincoln Christian.

CLASS C-2

Team (Rec.) | Pvs.

1. Hastings SC (13-1) | 1

2. Oakland-Craig (13-0) | 2

3. Fillmore Central (11-3) | 4

4. Crofton (11-3) | 3

5. Superior (12-1) | 5

6. Ponca (12-2) | 6

7. Clarkson/Leigh (11-2) | 9

8. Blue Hill (9-3) | 10

9. Guardian Angels CC (11-3) | 7

10. BRLD (10-4) | 8

Contenders: Centennial, Doniphan-Trumbull, Elm Creek, Lourdes CC, Stanton, Wood River, Yutan.

Comments: Hastings St. Cecilia lost a close one to a very good Northwest (Class B) team, so it's tough to drop the Hawkettes after a quality opponent loss, even with Oakland-Craig playing as well as it is. St. Cecilia, however, lost all-stater Lexi Vertin to injury in the loss to Northwest. Clarkson/Leigh picked up a win against D-2 top-ranked Humphrey St. Francis.

Key games: Tuesday--Hastings SC at Superior; Thursday--Yutan at Louisville; Friday--Hastings SC at Aquinas, Superior at Doniphan-Trumbull, BRLD at Humphrey/LHF; Saturday--Fillmore Central at Lincoln Christian, Stanton at BRLD.

CLASS D-1

Team (Rec.) | Pvs.

1. North Platte St. Pat's (15-0) | 1

2. Pleasanton (14-1) | 2

3. Humphrey/LHF (13-1) | 3

4. Archbishop Bergan (9-4) | 4

5. Weeping Water (12-2) | 7

6. North Central (11-1) | 6

7. Hitchcock County (10-2) | 10

8. Dundy Co.-Stratton (12-1) | 5

9. Elkhorn Valley (11-2) | 8

10. Lawrence-Nelson (12-1) | -

Contenders: Ansley-Litchfield, Central Valley, Elgin/PJ, Fullerton, Hartington-Newcastle.

Comments: The biggest change comes after Hitchcock County knocked Dundy County-Stratton from the ranks of the unbeatens. Hitchcock County also avenged an earlier-season defeat to DCS. North Central dropped its first game of the season but is not punished for losing to C-2 West Holt. Lawrence-Nelson has won 10 straight since losing to BDS on Dec. 8 and enters the ratings for the first time this season.

Key games: Monday-Saturday--Goldenrod Conference Tournament (Central Valley, Fullerton); Tuesday--Ansley-Litchfield at Pleasanton; Friday--Archbishop Bergan at Columbus Scotus, BRLD at Humphrey/LHF; Elm Creek at Pleasanton; Saturday--Weeping Water at Lourdes CC.

CLASS D-2

Team (Rec.) | Pvs.

1. Humphrey SF (12-3) | 1

2. CWC (12-3) | 5

3. Sterling (12-3) | -

4. Falls City SH (13-2) | 2

5. Exeter-Milligan (13-2) | 3

6. Ewing (11-2) | 6

7. Wynot (10-3) | 8

8. BDS (9-4) | 4

9. Mullen (11-2) | 7

10. South Platte (11-0) | 9

Contenders: Cody-Kilgore, Kenesaw, Loomis, Maywood-Hayes Center, Silver Lake.

Comments: Sterling entered the MUDECAS Tournament as a six seed and left with the A Division championship. The Lady Jets' run through the tournament included wins against BDS, Sacred Heart and Exeter-Milligan, with the win against the Timberwolves coming in convincing fashion. Humphrey St. Francis is not penalized for losses to C-1 Pierce and C-2 Clarkson/Leigh. CWC, winner of 10 straight, has yet to lose against D-2 competition.

Key games: Monday-Saturday--Goldenrod Conference Tournament (Humphrey SF); Thursday--Exeter-Milligan at BDS, Mullen at Cody-Kilgore; Friday--Ewing at Elgin/PJ.

Reach the writer at 402-473-2639 or cgrell@journalstar.com. On Twitter @LJSSportsGrell.

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Sports editor

Clark Grell is sports editor.

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