Basketball Top 10s: Riordan new top boys team, SHC still best girls squad

Riordan junior reserve guard Eric Vrana and the Crusaders are back on top in our rankings. (Photo by Matt Zheng)

Riordan junior reserve guard Eric Vrana and the Crusaders are back on top in our rankings. (Photo by Matt Zheng)

Every week, we will be publishing our take on the top ten boys and girls basketball teams in San Francisco. Feel free to make your own rankings and discuss ours in the comment section.

Boys Basketball Top 10

1. Riordan (13-6, last week’s ranking: 3)
Wins: No. 2 St. Ignatius, Valley Christian-San Jose (5-14) Losses: none

2. St. Ignatius (13-6, last week’s ranking: 1)
Wins: none Losses: No. 1 Riordan, Mitty (15-4)

3. University (17-5, last week’s ranking: 4)
Wins: No. 7 Stuart Hall, Marin Academy (8-9) Losses: none

4. Sacred Heart Cathedral (12-5, last week’s ranking: 2)
Wins: none Losses: Serra (16-3), Bellarmine (14-5)

5. Lincoln (10-11, last week’s ranking: 7)
Wins: Balboa (8-12), Lowell (10-10) Losses: none

6. Urban (17-4, last week’s ranking: 5)
Wins: Marin Academy (8-9), Emery (10-9), International (4-15) Losses: No. 8 Lick-Wilmerding

7. Stuart Hall (16-6, last week’s ranking: 6)
Wins: International, St. Helena (8-13) Losses: No. 3 University

8. Lick-Wilmerding (14-8, last week’s ranking: 9)
Wins: International, No. 6 Urban, Valley Christian-Dublin (10-10) Losses: none

9. Gateway (12-3, last week’s ranking: NR)
Wins: Bay (10-9), Leadership (6-13), Pescadero (1-16) Losses: Head-Royce (15-4)

10. Galileo (10-8, last week’s ranking: NR)
Wins: Marshall (9-7), Jordan (1-5) Losses: none

Best of the rest: Marshall (9-7), Mission (7-13), Lowell (10-10)

Girls Basketball Top 10

1. Sacred Heart Cathedral (15-4, last week’s ranking: 1)
Wins: Notre Dame-Belmont (6-14), Presentation (8-12) Losses: St. Francis-Sacramento (12-8)

2. St. Ignatius (14-5, last week’s ranking: 2)
Wins: none Losses: Mitty (15-5)

3. Lowell (16-5, last week’s ranking: 3)
Wins: Burton (5-7), Lincoln (11-12), Lincoln Losses: none

4. International (19-2, last week’s ranking: 4)
Wins: No. 10 Lick-Wilmerding, Convent (10-11), San Domenico (15-6) Losses: none

5. Galileo (18-3, last week’s ranking: 5)
Wins: Marshall (1-9), Burton (5-7) Losses: none

6. Mercy (9-11, last week’s ranking: 6)
Wins: Castilleja (3-16) Losses: Sacred Heart Prep (15-5), Notre Dame-San Jose (11-7)

7. Washington (11-10, last week’s ranking: 9)
Wins: Wallenberg (1-13) Losses: Florin (14-7)

8. Urban (16-4, last week’s ranking: 8)
Wins: Marin Academy (5-14), Athenian (9-10) Losses: No. 10 Lick-Wilmerding

9. University (12-10, last week’s ranking: 10)
Wins: Convent, Marin Academy Losses: Head-Royce (9-8)

10. Lick-Wilmerding (13-8, last week’s ranking: NR)
Wins: No. 8 Urban Losses: No. 4 International

Best of the rest: Balboa (10-10), Convent (10-11), Lincoln (11-12), Bay (11-9)

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50 Comments

  1. Ari Gold says:

    If this is the last poll ever, I feel tingly that JB elected not to put either SI team at #1. Thanks JB. Cannot put into words the job youve done covering SF prep sports. Hope you catch on in another media outlet. Your talent should not go to waste.

  2. JJ says:

    Interesting how Eric Vrana plays 1 minute a game and his picture is featured in the top 10 section. Hopefully, this isn’t the last top 10, but if it is, it’s been a fun ride and this site will be sorely missed.

    • Just some facts says:

      And also Matt Brown. (SI 24). A good match-up. I suspect we will see a lot more of Eric Vrana.

      • JJ says:

        Matt Brown actually logs alot of minutes, Vrana literally plays 1 minute per game.

        • jbalan says:

          Does it really matter JJ? For the Top 10s I just try to use a good picture. This is a good picture. Don’t read into it too much.

        • Just some facts says:

          JJ
          I agree Matt B is a great player (has been a very good player for SI for years) and gets more minutes – But as JB says it is a good picture (too bad that Matt isn’t seen frace front as well but his number is clear). But he is a senior and Eric is part of the new Riordan future since he is a Junior. Good luck to Matt wherever he goes. Lucky team who gets him.

  3. Just some facts says:

    SF Gate Bay Area Top 20 puts SI #15 (down 8) and SHC #16 (down 8) with Riordan # 13 (up 3).. No other big changes in order otherwise.

    I don’t understand HMB being the choice (per Maxpreps Rankings) for CCS Open for the only Div 4 team according to SFGate article when their Maxpreps National and State ratings are1908 and 172 and ARHS has National 569 and State 72 respectively at this time. Hope the comittee looks at this.

    • ARHS Stats says:

      C.C.S. Open Division will be the top 4 W.C.A.L. Teams only.

      The top six teams in the C.C.S. are all W.C.A.L. Teams by the MaxPreps rankings.

      With the C.C.S. Open Division By-Laws, it will not be the best 8 teams. The final team will probably be ranked by MaxPreps as the 10th to14th best team in the section

      • Lance says:

        As Sanfranpreps maybe winding down. I can honestly say i’m going to miss you ARHS. I will be going to my grave wondering if you were a living, breathing human being, or the robotic creation of a mad scientist.

      • Just some facts says:

        Mitch Stephens yesterday on SFGate/Chronicle:

        “A 10-person committee will pick the top eight teams for each gender, and all will automatically advance to the CIF regional tournament. Not more than four teams from a single league and no more than three from a single enrollment-based division must play in the CCS Open Division.

        So, if utilizing the MaxPreps computer rankings today, those eight boys teams would be: No. 1 Mitty (Div. 2), No. 2 Serra (D2), No. 3 Bellarmine (D1), No. 4 Sacred Heart Cathedral (D3), No. 5 Palo Alto (D1), No. 6 El Camino-South San Francisco (D2), No. 7 Piedmont Hills-San Jose (D1), No. 8 Half Moon Bay (D4)”.

        Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/preps/article/Open-division-could-spread-the-wealth-4230817.php#ixzz2JTmkFpI6

        Stats, Does this mean that although ARHS is in Div 4 it has no chance to play but HMB (Div 4) does get to play because they are not WCAL? (Assuming that SHC is number 4 in the WDAL at the end of the season). Even though by Maxpreps rankings ARHS is a better team and even though the Maxpreps playoffs ratings says ARHS is higher too. Is that due to the transfer problem last year resulting in ATHS having to forfeti games? But can ARHD still petition fot the Open?

        Stats, you are a living legend.

        • ARHS Stats says:

          First, I think the committee is 13 people, each League has 1 Representive, usually a Basketball Coach for one of the schools in the League.

          Second, We don’t know who the Top Four WCAL teams in the League Standings will be until after the last league game is played. It will make a difference depending on who the 3rd and 4th place teams are.

          I am assuming Mitty and Serra will be in first and second place, but 4 or 5 teams could come in 3rd or 4th place.

          Half Moon Bay lost to Westmoor last night, this will lower their ranking.
          There are about 4 teams with good chances to be the 4th non-WCAL team in the Open Division. Half Moon Bay is one, others are San Benito, Palma, Burlingame.

          The C.C.S. Open Division has rules, only 4 teams from one league. It has nothing to do with last year’s basketball team.

          The WCAL has 6 teams ranked 1 thru 6 by MaxPreps. Teams ranked #5 and #6 will not be in the Open Division unless they finish in the Top Four in League.

          • jbalan says:

            The top four WCAL teams in the regular-season standings will be in the CCS Open Division. The only way that would not happen is if a team outside the top four wins the WCAL tournament title. That would subsequently knock the No. 4 team out of the Open and into an enrollment division and put the tournament champ in the Open.

            • Just some facts says:

              I have to say that when they do not have the top teams playing because there are rules against how many teams come from one league – it debases the validity of the regional and state championships. The top 5th and 6th ranking teams in the WCAL can’t participate in the CCS although they are more competitive than other teams in other Leagues. For example, in Riordan’s case, although being the top team of the Division 4 they cannot play because their league is full of great playing teams. This concept it faulty. Even if schools outside of the WCAL think this ia a fair distribution how does winning a tournament in your Division have value when you are in the playoffs because a better team was excluded for a “technicality” of being is the most competitive League. it is like getting named Miss Congeniality.

              • ARHS Stats says:

                The WCAL does not want it’s teams to play each other in the first round of the playoffs.

                The other CCS Leagues don’t want to play their league mates in the first round.

              • Ari Gold says:

                This circus was created because the argument was all the private schools were winning the section titles. The public schools had little to no chance in winning a championship. The disparity led to this Open Division but the way I see it, the private school dominance will still continue in D1 through D4. Whatever WCAL team that did not get selected into Open CCS, (Bellarmine D1, St. Francis D2, SH/SI D3, Riordan D4), is going to win their slotted division.

                On the other hand this Open playoffs is going to be way more competitive. Whoever wins is truly the Big Cheese of CCS.

          • Ari Gold says:

            Come to think of it, CCS Open playoffs should be called WCAL Playoffs Part 2.

            • Just some facts says:

              I think you are not following the issue well. There can only be 4 teams from the WCAL in the CCS Open. If those are Mitty, Serra, Bellarmine, and SHC – which Divisions are they in ? Look that one up. So it is not just that only 4 teams can come from the same League (such as WCAL) it is also that no more than three can be from the same Division. If 4 WCAL teams get in and they are the four outlined above – although ARHS might be the best Div 4 team – they can’t go – why? because – they are from the WCAL – get it,? So being in the WCAL is a penalty. You see? So even if a WCAL team is likely to still win the whole thing – this plan is not democratic – it is basketball tournament with something like special admissions for public school like when race or ethnicity is used for admission to a UC school over an equally qualified or better qualified team. This isn’t a solution for the private schools having better teams, now is it?

              The bottom line is that schools in the WCAL like ARHS or SI or SHC (whichever is not number 4 at the end of the season – since 3 are tied presently and Bellarmine is very close to the three tied teams) – are not allowed in because they are in a too good League. The 5th and 6th WCAL team may be better than a lot of other schools In CCS but will not be able to play.

              I have a problem seeing why the schools shouldn’t be treated as equals whether or not they are private or public. And let the best teams win – after all this is a sport. Nothing stops the public schools in having better teams – and in fact there are many good public school teams, look at the Maxpreps Top 20 teams, for instance, El Camino is in it and I can list more good public schools just from the Top 20 teams on the SFGate list of Bay Area schools – guess what maybe Westmoor will play in the CCS? After all they beat SI and HMB too, now.

              • Ari Gold says:

                The no more than 3 from one division doesnt apply here. Bellarmine (D1), SF, Mitty, Serra (D2), SHC, SI, VC (D3), and Riordan (D4).

              • Just some facts says:

                Let me help;

                Maxprep info:
                CCS Div 1 Bellarmine Maxprep

                Playoff predictions go #1 Bellarmine and #2 Palo Alto although under Standings Bellarmine is #7 with 6 public schools ahead of them

                CCS Div 2
                Standings: Playoff predictions
                1. Westmoor 1. Mitty
                2 Serra 2. Serra
                3. Mitty 3. El Camino
                4. Willow Glen ……
                5. El Camino 7. St. Francis
                10. Westmoor

                CCS Div 3
                Standings
                1. Del Mar
                2. Aptos
                3. Saratoga
                #4 St ignatius
                #7 SHC
                Playoff Predistions
                1. SHC
                2 S
                3. Burlingame

                8. Valley Christian

                CCS4
                Standings
                Seaside
                HMB
                Palma
                Soquel
                ARHS

                Playoff Predictions
                1. ARHS
                2. HMB
                3. Palma
                4. Soquel
                etc.

              • sfpatriot says:

                I think that Riordan winning in CCS Div 4 and moving on to NorCals will do much more for the school and program than if they end up in the Open division and got knocked out early.

              • jbalan says:

                All teams in the CCS Open get an automatic bid to the state tournament.

              • E. K. says:

                Just some facts: Standings are overall record. Rankings take strength of schedule into account. For example, in Division 3, Del Mar plays in the West Valley league, the bottom tier of the BVAL. Burlingame plays in the mediocre PAL South but faced 5 WCAL teams in non-league play as well as Leland and St. Mary’s-Albany.

              • E. K. says:

                I don’t expect Westmoor will be Open Division. They’re behind El Camino and with Mitty and Serra getting in, that leaves one other D2 team. If it’s not El Camino, it could be Leigh. Past that there’s also Willow Glen and Leland.

                If we take Palo Alto, El Camino and Piedmont Hills as guarantees for Open Division, that leaves one final spot. (Palo Alto is probably the only surefire lock for now. The others are safe bets, though.)

                That last spot could go to HMB, Palma, San Benito, Burlingame or maybe someone like Soquel.

                I see the MBL winner as the most likely team to get it, but someone like Seaside sneaking in to win that league would throw a wrench into the situation. Half Moon Bay would still probably be the next most likely.

                Burlingame-HMB is a potential PAL Tournament matchup. That could play a part in this as well.

          • Just some facts says:

            ARHS Stats, Are you speaking for the WCAL and the other leagues when you say that the leagues do not want to play another same league team in the First Round? Can you quote your sources?

          • E. K. says:

            You see Burlingame in? Even though they already played 5 WCAL teams?

            What about Soquel?

            If it weren’t for the limit on 3 per division, Leigh would get in before Half Moon Bay. Willow Glen would have a shot as well.

            What about another BVAL team like Santa Teresa?

            • JJ says:

              If Willow Glen, Leigh, or Santa Teresa made the Open, they would most likely play Mitty or Serra and get blown out by 35 pts. It’s better to just play in their own division, not in the Open Division. The purpose of the Open Division is to give the public schools a chance at a championship.

              • E. K. says:

                With Mitty, Serra and El Camino in Open that would mean Willow Glen, Leigh and Leland wouldn’t be able to go.

                I see the likelihood of a Burlingame team that was blown out by Riordan, Serra and Bellarmine entering the Open Division as very slim.

                That would leave:
                4 WCAL teams
                Palo Alto
                El Camino
                Piedmont Hills
                MBL Gabilan Champion?

                That loss to Westmoor hurts Half Moon Bay’s chances. Who else could go if you rule out the Mount Hamilton Division 2 teams and Burlingame? It really just leaves the Gabilan champion or maybe someone like Half Moon Bay or Soquel from Division 4.

                Should El Camino slip up, Leigh could take their spot but El Camino’s head-to-head win makes that highly unlikely.

                I think the intention is to usually get four WCAL teams, a couple of top public schools and a couple of private schools like Palma or Sacred Heart Prep. That should happen most years. We won’t see SHP this year and we might not see Palma.

              • JJ says:

                Besides the 4 WCAL teams, I think El Camino, Piedmont Hills and Palo Alto are virtual locks for the Open, so that leaves 1 team left. Whatever team that is will play Mitty, and they will lose by 30 or more.

  4. Crusader 88 says:

    This blog has been a great resource for the high school sports community and I really hope it can continue.
    As for the rankings, as a Riordan alum, it’s nice to see them #1 but there is a lot of season ahead.
    Based on the results I think I’d have SHC number 1 unless they lose to Riordan. They have the best league win so far (Serra) and the best league record between the three city schools.
    Riordan 2
    SI 3
    University 4
    Lincoln 5 although those BCL teams have been very good.

  5. Tenor1 says:

    Interesting choice to put urban two spots above a lick team that just beat them by 13

  6. Ari Gold says:

    Balan, any new updates/leads on who the next SH football coach will be?

  7. wcalsf says:

    Crusaders have a tough schedule this week with Serra and Mitty both on the road and closing the week hosting the Bells on Saturday. 2-1 would make for a successful week. Contributions from the bench will be key.

  8. wcalsf says:

    Jeremy, hoping this site sticks around. If not, your efforts and hard work are much appreciated! Good luck!

  9. Roger says:

    Galileo boys lost to Lowell earlier in the season Jeremy.

    • jbalan says:

      You are correct.

      • A. Wong says:

        But Galileo did beat one of the top contenders for the AAA championships which is Marshall. Big test for the lions when they face off against Lincoln on Thursday. Hope it will be a great game!
        Btw the score for today’s game was Galileo 59, Isa 50.

  10. pf says:

    I still think marshall,Lincoln championship matchup ,lincoln had a close game with marshall ,marshall beat mission without their big man and mission is the third runner up because of their guards porter and murray scoring doubles every game, gal looks like they want it but if they manage to beat Lincoln somehow they prove that the title is up for grabs

    • DG says:

      Lincoln will blow out gal just like Lowell. It will be Lincoln vs Marshall in the finals.

      • sf_alum says:

        i predict Marshall will not make the finals. Mission, Gal, or Lowell will beat them.

        • mger says:

          Galileo truely got lucky at that game. It was a home court advantage with their PETITE court. The 3′s gal was making were truely only worth two points. It will be lincoln and Marshall at find end with mission in the mix.

          • A. Wong says:

            I truly believe that Galileo has a chance on making it to the championships, because Marshall only beat mission by 2, and Galileo beat Marshall by 14. It doesn’t matter about the court, it’s a matter of how you play as a team or not, and clearly Galileo played as a team to come up on top against Marshall.

  11. Dukes says:

    JB…Thanks for all the hard work……

    ARI GOLD…..Now you can finally have your life back rather than wasting it on this blog.

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