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    Forum Pollsters Class A Poll: 1-31-19

    Pollsters have overcome the Polar Vortex, and all it entails, to give their pith.  Contributing pith and insight this week are Artis Gilmore, Jackalope and yours truly. 

    1. Tea Area (30 pts)
    2. St. Thomas More (27 pts)
    3. Sioux Falls Christian (24 pts)
    4. Tiospa Zina (20 pts)
    5. TIE Red Cloud, Pine Ridge (15 pts)
    7. Dakota Valley (11 pts)
    8. Parker (9 pts)
    9. Dell Rapids (8 pts)
    10. Parker (7 pts)
    11. Lennox (3 pts)
    12. Rapid City Christian (2 pts)
    13. Cheyenne-Eagle Butte (1 pt)

    Honorable Mention: Hot Springs, Aberdeen Roncalli, Todd County, Vermillion, Winner, Madison, Sioux Valley, Little Wound, West Central, Tri Valley 

    General pithy comments from the pollsters: 
    Tea will stay the class of the field as long as Friedel and Hohn are relentlessly attacking the rim while Stearns is keeping the defenses honest from deep.  STM looks like the clear #2 with SFC, Red Cloud, Pine Ridge and Tiospa nipping at their heels.  After these six who is the best of the rest?  Pick-em.

    Tea had one of the best run of games the past week that we have witnessed in recent memory.   The Titans played, and beat, three previously undefeated teams: St Thomas More, Sioux Falls Christian, and Clark Willow Lake ... now that is impressive! 

    The top teams from the Northeast Conference were no match for their counterparts from the Dak XII in last week’s Dak XII - NEC Clash.   Too bad the top Class A team, Tiospa Zina could not fit a game into their schedule .... the Wambdi were playing and winning the Dakota Oyate Challenge in Huron.   

    The top 3 teams continue to be: Tea, Tommie More, and Sioux Falls Christian with the top two Reservation teams right below them: Pine Ridge and Red Cloud.

    Two teams with good looking records — Hot Springs at 10-1 and Rapid City Christian at 9-2 — continue to lack any quality wins. 

    LENNOX
    Six in a row for the Orioles, but the winter skies are not looking so friendly over the next few weeks, could be a lot of orange feathers flying before the season is over.

    HOT SPRINGS
    Bison have feasted on Class B teams. The lone loss to Upton, WY is perplexing.

    DAKOTA VALLEY
    Dunes boys survive scare in Madison from Connor Bawdon and the Hamlin Chargers, who had the hot hand, but not as hot as the hand of Panthers sophomore Paul Bruns. who led his team to a narrow victory. 

    Dakota Valley continues to win ... except when they play Tea or Sioux Falls Christian.

    Super soph Paul Bruns is playing as well as anybody in Class A not named Noah Freidel.  

    TIOSPA ZINA
    What exactly is a Wambdi?  Google it and all you find is "basketball team from South Dakota who has beaten everyone so far except Red Cloud". 

    The Wambdi churned through the Dakota Oyate Challenge like there was no challenge, winning the championship in convincing fashion. 

    You had better have your scoreboard greased up when Tiospa Zina comes to play because White, Pratt, Greeley, et. al are outscoring everbody they play. 

    Tiospa Zina continues to roll smoothly along and at 14-1 the Wambdi have more wins than anybody in the state. 

    MADISON
    No need to check their papers. These Bulldogs are definitely not AKC registered. 

    ABERDEEN RONCALLI
    Green Cavaliers in head on collision with some high performance Chargers in Madison, with all the Cavaliers being declared a total loss. 

    A Green Cavalier coasted into Madison with a dead battery and was zapped by a recharged team of Chargers.   

    SIOUX FALLS CHRISTIAN
    Chargers just not in the Titans league right now, but with Mr. Goodbar getting great help on the inside from a 6' 7" dunking machine who goes by the name Zach Witte, the Titans haven't seen the last of this team. 

    The Chargers were low voltage when Tea showed up last week. 

    Mr. Goodbar didn’t receive the usual amount of energy from his Mr. Goodbar and Noah, Justin, and Company handled the low power Chargers quite easily. 

    PINE RIDGE
    Big wins of late over Winner and White River, but Thorpes over-celebrate and stub their toe against Bridgewater/Emery.

    Pine Ridge avenged an earlier loss to White River when they beat the Tigers in White River giving Eldon’s team their first loss of the season. 

    The schedule makers were not kind to Pine Ridge last week.   The Thorpes had a brutal schedule of back to back road games: first they rolled into White River and beat the Tigers; then they traveled to Madison the next day and lost to one of the best teams in the state: Bridgewater Emery. 

    Bad Bear, Schrader, Brown, and Jensen are fueling the Pine Ridge drive towards the state tournament. 

    ST. THOMAS MORE
    Who does number 2 work for?  Cavaliers' trip to Vegas last summer is paying off big at the tables this season, only game where they didn't cover the spread was against Tea, otherwise all the point shaving has happened on the opponents' side of the scoreboard. 

    St Thomas More’s 4 point loss to Tea is looking more and more like the highest quality loss of the season ... if you believe in quality losses. 

    Tommie More lost for the first time to Tea and turned around and hung 90 on Spearfish. 

    The next big challenge for STM is when they drive across the state to play Class AA Harrisburg at The Pentagon this weekend.   Harrisburg is heating up in the frigid January air so More better have more firepower than they did in the loss to Tea. 

    EBE spends more time east river than west river. 

    RC CHRISTIAN
    After the Comets' were knocked out of orbit by some corn-fed pheasants, they got their tails lit up in practice and are now back on course to challenge the bullies from up the road, the Blue Empire.

    There was a power outage in the Sioux Falls Christian gym ... apparently massive amounts of power have been diverted to the southern end of the Sioux Empire in an area centered on the Tea High School gym. 

    SIOUX VALLEY
    Cossacks all checked in to the hospital after severe dog bites last from some young Bulldogs.  And not the usual pesky Bulldogs from Madison, this time they were from DeSmet. 

    TEA AREA
    Titans are destroying all the competition so far, and Coach Fechner hasn't even had to utilize one of his top weapons from his JV team yet, Joe Walnofer. 

    Tea is shredding through undefeated teams like a snow plow through the latest ground blizzard produced snow bank.   Sioux Falls Lincoln is the next undefeated team the Titans are scheduled to play this weekend at The Pentagon. 

    The Titans have a daunting schedule but Coach Fechner has these young men ready to meet the challenge and play at the highest level ... Tea is having an outstanding season. 

    An undefeated Cyclone whipped into Madison and tried to pick up and overturn a blue and gold Titan but Nissan makes a very sturdy Titan and the Cyclone was turned into a gentle breeze. 

    LITTLE WOUND
    The Mustangs are up and down like yo-yos. Were up against Red Cloud on their home court. Watch out for the Mustangs?? 

    DELL RAPIDS
    Quarriers drop a notch after hitting the road and taking one in the chin from Vermillion.

    The Quarriers are running 2nd to SFC in Region 3 ... no shame there. 

    I can’t keep up with which of the three Rentz boys was the leading scorer in the Dells win over Sisseton, but one of them was. 

    WINNER
    Warriors lacking a signature win. They had their chances against the Thorpes, but could not deliver. 

    RED CLOUD
    Opponents take one too many drinks of the Crusader Ale, and it's lights out, party over. 

    Red Cloud inexplicably lost to Little Wound ... are the Mustangs really that good? 

    Ale Rama and his Crusaders team mates got into a shootout with Tex from Little Wound ... all season I have been thinking Ale would win any shootout, but a shootout against a guy named Tex?   Tex wins this one. 

    TODD COUNTY
    The Falcons like feasting on lowly competition it seems. Need to take flight against top flight talent to crack the top 10. 

    PARKER
    Pheasants flying high with only two losses, but the big pheasant egg on display on main street in Alexandria still looms large. 

    The Pheasants should have been flying higher than the Chester Flyers but we’re grounded by weather conditions. 

    Flights in and out if Parker were cancelled after the Eagles flew back to Irene.   The Hawks are hoping weather conditions in Canistota will allow the Pheasants to glide into town and actually play a basketball game.   

    CHEYENNE-EAGLE BUTTE
    The Braves from Cheyenne Eagle Butte are sitting on top of Region 6. 

    The CEB win over Little Wound gets higher quality after what LW did to Red Cloud last week. 

    I needed another team to put in my top 10 so I flipped a coin and Cheyenne Eagle Butte won ... they are number 10 on my poll. 

    QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS? CONTACT C.C. O’HARRA AT: admin@sdsportsbuzz.com

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