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FIELDER’S CHOICES: Gorman boys should strike gold in Sunset

My two-month internship working on a gold dredge in Alaska is finally over. I didn’t get rich, but at least I’m back in time for the basketball playoffs.

Eric is a big fan of those gold rush shows on TV and totally has gold fever. He’s always yammering on about how one day he’s going to find the mother lode and that those Alaskan crab fisherman were a bunch of tools, so the two of us headed down to the guidance counselor’s office and signed up for a work-study program on the Bering Sea. I figured it was a cool way to boost my GPA.

Eric wimped out after, like, three days, though. He kept saying he was allergic to moose jerky, but I think it was because he couldn’t be away from his dog and FIFA ’13 video game for that long. I stuck it out, and even took home a few gold nuggets as a souvenir. Got an A, too.

I haven’t spoken to Eric since he ditched me up north. Hopefully we’ll talk before the state tournament. I have tons to tell him, including my region predictions.

BOYS
DIVISION I SUNSET REGION

Semifinalists: Arbor View, Centennial, Legacy, Bishop Gorman

Championship: Gorman over Centennial

This is the closest thing we have this year to a glamour large-school matchup. Gorman, ranked No. 18 in the nation by MaxPreps.com, owns two 79-71 victories over the Bulldogs, including a memorable double-overtime duel on Feb. 7 in the regular-season finale. And you know the Allen twins and Centennial want one more crack at the defending state champs before heading off to Stanford.

DIVISION I SUNRISE REGION

Semifinalists: Foothill, Valley, Canyon Springs, Las Vegas

Championship: Foothill over Las Vegas

Any of these semifinalists could win the title and it wouldn’t surprise me, but the edge goes to the Falcons because, well, I did “eeny meeny miney moe” and it landed on the Falcons. Keep an eye on Valley, which is the most talented team in the bracket but stumbled down the stretch in the regular season and, as a result, faces a potential road game in the semifinals.

DIVISION I-A SOUTHERN REGION

Semifinalists: Clark, Chaparral, Cheyenne, Desert Pines

Championship: Desert Pines over Clark

At this time a year ago, folks were all bent out of shape about Bishop Gorman’s dominance and competitive equality. After Desert Pines’ close loss to powerhouse Findlay Prep, there is a legitimate debate about which team is the best in Southern Nevada. Unfortunately, thanks to realignment, we’ll never know for sure. At least a Desert Pines-Clark showdown is a pretty sweet consolation prize. 

DIVISION III SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Championship: Lincoln County over Agassi Prep

The injury to Lake Mead’s Justin Yamzon makes the Lynx the team to beat.

DIVISION IV SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Championship: Pahranagat Valley over Spring Mountain

If the Panthers don’t win by double digits, it’d be a stunner.

GIRLS
DIVISION I SUNSET REGION

Semifinalists: Arbor View, Centennial, Durango, Bishop Gorman

Championship: Centennial over Gorman

Tonishia Childress’ spectacular game-winning 3-pointer for Gorman last week means Centennial should enter the postseason with a bit of a snarl. Had the Bulldogs been blown out, that’s one thing.

But to lose on a buzzer beater, well, that’ll get you fired up. The Gaels swept the season series, and we all know how difficult it is to beat a team three times in the same season. Unless you’re just better.

And the Gaels just might be better. 

DIVISION I SUNRISE REGION

Semifinalists: Canyon Springs, Coronado, Foothill, Liberty

Championship: Liberty over Canyon Springs

The Patriots have established themselves as the team to beat based on their work the past few seasons. A dangerous semifinal matchup against Las Vegas and high-scoring guard Shomari Harris or crosstown rival Foothill awaits, but Liberty should raise its third region championship banner in the past four seasons.

DIVISION I-A SOUTHERN REGION

Semifinalists: Boulder City, Moapa Valley, Chaparral, Faith Lutheran

Championship: Boulder City over Chaparral

The Sunrise League was stronger than the Sunset during the regular season, and the postseason should be no different. Faith Lutheran could prove me wrong, however. The Crusaders went 10-0 in league and have the opportunity to avenge losses to Virgin Valley and Boulder City.

DIVISION III SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Championship: Calvary Chapel over Lincoln County

The Lions have won 13 straight since losing to Clark three days before Christmas.

DIVISION IV SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Championship: Pahranagat Valley over Tonopah

The Panthers will avenge their five-point loss to the Muckers during the regular season.

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