Boys Basketball Top 10: Sacred Heart back on top

The St. Ignatius student section got all riled up for their game against rival Sacred Heart Cathedral, but what do they think about the Wildcats falling down to No. 3? (Photo by Doug Ko)

The St. Ignatius student section got all riled up for their game against rival Sacred Heart Cathedral, but what do they think about the Wildcats falling down to No. 3? (Photo by Doug Ko)

Every Monday, we will be compiling a poll of local media members to rank the top 10 boys and girls basketball teams in San Francisco. Feel free to make your own rankings and discuss ours in the comment section. Voters include staff, Mitch Stephens from and and Dylan Kruse from the San Francisco Examiner.

1. Sacred Heart Cathedral (17-5, last week’s ranking: 2)
The Irish regain the top spot after wins over No. 3 St. Ignatius and St. Francis (13-9) last week, but the honor may be bitter-sweet, as they missed an opportunity to gain a share of first place with a loss to powerhouse Mitty (20-2). Before the Mitty loss, the Irish had won six consecutive WCAL games.

2. University (19-5, last week’s ranking: 3)
The Red Devils move up a spot and took control of the BCL West race with double-digit wins over Drew (6-16) and No. 8 Stuart Hall last week. University has won eight consecutive BCL West games after their only league loss to Marin Academy.

3. St. Ignatius (14-8, last week’s ranking: 1)
The Wildcats held the top spot in our poll for the past three weeks, but drop two spots after arguably their worst week of the season. It began with a double-digit loss to rival Sacred Heart Cathedral, then continued with losses to WCAL foes Mitty and St. Francis.

4. Washington (18-8, last week’s ranking: 4)
It’s hard to argue that the Eagles aren’t playing the best basketball in the AAA as they’ve won seven straight after their lone loss to Lincoln. They continued their hot streak last week, with lopsided wins over O’Connell (3-8) and last week’s, No. 10 team Wallenberg (9-11).

5. Mission (16-9, last week’s ranking: 5)
The Bears hold on to the No. 5 spot, and may be showing some of last season’s championship form, after a blowout win over ISA (1-18) and a 13-point win over No. 10 Lowell last week.

6. Lincoln (16-10, last week’s ranking: 6)
Like the other AAA contenders, the Mustangs held form last week, with wins over Galileo (6-15) and O’Connell.

7. Riordan (8-14, last week’s ranking: 7)
The Crusaders began the week with their fifth and sixth consecutive WCAL losses to Serra (16-6) and Bellarmine (12-9), but broke the streak with a blowout win over Valley Christian (7-14).

8. Stuart Hall (12-11, last week’s ranking: 9)
The Knights hop up a spot for the second week in a row after a win over Lick-Wilmerding (12-11) and a loss to No. 2 University last week.

9. Marshall (11-12, last week’s ranking: NR)
After falling out of the Top 10 last week, the Phoenix responded with wins over No. 10 Lowell and Burton (5-14) to enter once again.

10. Lowell (15-9, last week’s ranking: 8)
The Cardinals have been up and down this season, but last week was a significant down, with losses to No. 9 Marshall and No. 5 Mission.

Also receiving votes: Lick-Wilmerding (12-11), Wallenberg (9-11) and Bay (16-6).

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25 Comments on " Boys Basketball Top 10: Sacred Heart back on top"

  1. #3 ranking for SI is probably about right. Face Riordan and Valley Christian this week before WCAL playoffs start. Will need to improve quickly to have any chance on going deep into playoffs (WCAL/CCS). Should bring up Dunbar from Frosh team…need someone who can penetrate and create open looks.

  2. No, just fire the coach let the assistants coach SI
    BB boys during playoffs!!l LOL!!

  3. the general public | February 7, 2011 at 5:59 PM |

    bring that dunbar kid up
    heard he’s been ridiculous on the freshman level

  4. I have to disagree in that #2 would be a better ranking for SI. The three teams they played this week are among the top 15 in the Bay Area and they are currently without when of their best scorers in Nick Johnson. Even without Johnson, I don’t believe University could hang with SI as they do not face defenses nearly as tough as the Cats and don’t play in as many close games. SI is battle tested and has won its fair share of tight games this year, they are just struggling to score at the moment. They should get their offensive confidence back this week in time for the playoffs. Don’t be surprised to see an SI-SH rematch in CCS and season ending rankings with SI back as the number 1 team in the city

  5. I seriously doubt University is better than SI. University barely scrapd by against Riordan who SI handled quite easily. I don’t mean to take anything away from University but the WCAL is just such a good conference all around.
    On that note let’s not get too hasty about firing the Coach DeBenedetti. Sure I think there is a better way to coach that team, but let’s not forget that he does have some quality wins (Bellarmine, Mitty, SH). Not all of the blame can be placed on him. The whole dynamic of SI athletics has changed with Bob Vegara as the athletic director. It has become more of a “family name gets you in” instead of skill.
    I’m not sure of moving Dunbar up quite yet. DeBenedetti rarely uses a true PG (Mrlick usually brings it up). Plus you have Quintana, Waters, and Pappas. Two of these are seniors who have much needed experience when it comes time for big play-off games. I say wait with Dunbar, or just bring him up for VC/Riordan. Next year Dunbar + Waters = amazing…if Waters gets a shot which I hope he works on.

  6. “family name gets you in” so TRUE in SI

  7. UHS would definitely hang with the WCAL teams. The devils tend to hang with whoever they play and showed it during a pretty tough preseason schedule (oakland, ND Sherman Oaks, Burkbank). And if we’re throwing out score comparisons vs riordan, we might as well take a look at the games vs Mission while we’re at it. Si nudged out Mission whie UHS handled them in a double digit win.

    All of the WCAL people on these boards immediately jump to the conclusion that a game with SH/SI would be a blowout, but when it comes down to it, they run the floor, they shoot the ball, and they compete.

  8. ^^^ well put uhs

  9. To: “uhs”- you’re right, SI barely beat Mission in December during the Sand Dune Classic. But keep in mind that due to a power failure the night before which cancelled games, SI was forced to play two games the same day, the second of which was against Mission-by the 4th quarter, they had just run out of gas but still found a way to get it done.

  10. lol at UHS. Even though SI isn’t as good as when I was on the team (98-00′) they would still lose.

  11. SI barely beat Mission but was up 17 at one point. That game was the 2nd of a double header they had to play due to a power outage during their Sand Dune Tourny. Their first game was against Oak Tech who they beat by 17.(Sounds like their legs gave out) Having seen them play a couple times, I do not think UHS would get more than 5 wins in the WCAL.

  12. Johnny Drama | February 8, 2011 at 5:59 PM |

    UHS would get 3-4 wins in WCAL. They would beat VC twice and Riordan either once or twice.

  13. @the power outage people

    I believe the Riordan game was UHS’ first after a week without practice because of finals (recall that Lincoln almost pulled off an upset over De La Salle under the same conditions). The devils came out sluggish in first quarter vs Riordan before getting everything together (and at one point had the lead at 12 or 14 I believe). If we want to bring SH into the conversation, they only beat Riordan by 7. We can keep using final scores to predict what might happen if SI/SH were to face UHS, but the point I’m trying to make is that you can’t compare teams by comparing scores. Each game has its own back story (finals, power outage, awesome party the night before, etc), and takes on its own personality when the game starts.

    Maybe SI and SH are better, and the debating will continue until they play each other someday, but until then there isn’t any overwhelming evidence to suggest that UHS wouldn’t be able to hold their own when they go head to head SI or SH.

  14. Tell your AD to join the sand dune classic next season!!! And will see what happens!!

  15. The biggest argument is the level of competition in the WCAL is way better than anything UHS sees all year! Serra, Mitty, St Francis, Bells, SI and SH would all be in first place of the UHS league. Would love to see them play one day!

  16. UHS, SHC “only” beat Riordan by 7 when they had Taylor Johns sit-out. The next game was a rout.

  17. Basketball Fan | February 9, 2011 at 9:29 AM |

    UHS needs to join the Sand Dune Classic next year. Good luck to all our SF WCAL teams.

  18. “every game has its own back story”

  19. I feel like this would be better if SH and SI didn’t want to damage their egos by playing UHS and possibly losing so they don’t schedule them.

  20. SI and SHC both competed in high profile tournaments this preseason. And while I agree that UHS schedule tough foes, or at least tries to, they lost to all of them I believe. I don’t call this years Riordan team too difficult a team to beat. 5 losses with a cream puff schedule…….not too impressive. Especially since one of the losses was to MA, and they were down to LW at half and had to claw back in it.

  21. @the foo: I wouldn’t say that foo.

  22. dear j drama | February 11, 2011 at 7:18 AM |

    While it is true SHC and SI may have competed in high profile tournaments, UHS played in the Modesto-Christian Tourney. That is one of the top tournaments in Norcal and invites team from all over California. They lost all but one game in that tournament, including a win over ND sherman oaks, which was a top 50 team in cali at the time I believe. The only game they lost was by 3 i think and the team they lost to went on to the championship. This whole debate is stupid though because its impossible to determine who is better unless they play. lets get a game scheduled for next season!

  23. Apparently UHS has been trying to schedule SI the last several years but SI has refused to play… think they were a little scared by the fact that they could actually lose when they clearly shouldn’t by reputation. But UHS’ top player this year is better than anyone on SI and they would easily have the tools to beat them (I’ve seen both play). SI has more height, but I’d take UHS. SH maybe a different story, they’re less consistent (some days way better than either team, some day worse) so would depend on whether they were playing well or not. If UHS ends the season ranked #1 in the city it will be deserved though. Haven’t lost to anyone in the city, tried to get more WCAL games to prove themselves… beat Riordan and Mission, Were beating Oakland at half. I’d say they’d finish easily above halfway in WCAL this year. UHS has the ability to blow out weaker teams and keep up with better teams if they’re on because of they’re style and coaching. It explains the Riordan, Mission and Oakland games… those teams all are more talented, bigger and athletic.

  24. SI scared? Wow! Good thing they’re in a sissy league!! LOL !!Good thing they’re playing sissy teams like Mitty, SHC Then ! OMG SI scared!!!

  25. UHS #1 in the city? Please!!

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