By David Krueger Herald Writer
Call me crazy, but our weekly Herald polls are making me feel like a poll expert. So, I figured we should break down where the local teams are in the first edition of the statewide Associated Press poll.
And tell the AP what they have wrong.
I don’t have a problem with Bothell at No. 1. By all accounts, the Cougars are rolling like their football team usually does. I’d bump the undefeated Jackson up from No. 5 to fourth, over a Garfield team that opened the season with a loss to Beamer. If you lose, you go down in the rankings (see: Arlington in The Herald power rankings).
Speaking of the Eagles, they’re currently in the “others receiving votes” section, where they received three votes. I expect Arlington to continue to rise in this poll and make it into the top 10. They can help themselves out with a win over Jackson this Friday. (Which, if Garfield is any indication, won’t hurt the Timberwolves too much.)
It will also greatly help my #theNorthisrising philosophy I’ve been preaching to my fellow prep workers this past week.
I’m a little hurt. The 3A poll shows absolutely no regard for The Herald power poll, which had Glacier Peak ahead of Mountlake Terrace. In the AP poll, Terrace is No. 6 and Glacier Peak No. 10. Of course, the Grizzlies just lost to Stanwood (whose AP snub is almost as egregious as the Seahawks’ Richard Sherman not making the NFL Pro Bowl) which probably hurt them.
The big omission here is the Spartans, who are a perfect 6-0 in Wesco 3A play with the aforementioned win over Glacier Peak. Stanwood’s two losses to Washington State teams were a seven-point loss to No. 7 Union and a five-point loss to Arlington, which should be a top-10 4A team.
The Spartans also lost two teams at a tournament in Idaho over the Holiday break.
Stanwood plays Terrace on Friday, and if it wins that game and still isn’t ranked, we’re going to stop doing this because the AP poll is obviously a sham.
For Pete’s sake people, #theNorthisrising!!!!!!
Cedarcrest is the top 2A team in the Cascade Conference, which features a mix of 1A and 2A teams. The Red Wolves have an impressive 6-1 league record, setting themselves up nicely for the postseason. However, their 6-7 overall record probably hurts them rankings-wise.
With a four-game losing streak to start the season to all unranked teams – Squalicum, Interlake, Sammamish and Lake Washington (which received three votes) – Cedarcrest is going to have a hard time making a case for a state ranking.
However, it’s not too late for a big run for the Red Wolves, and it’s the best time of the season (the end) to do it
King’s – the Cascade Conference leader – is ranked No. 9. I’d like to see the Knights higher (I ranked them as the No. 10 team in the area this past week) and think they’ll continue to rise. They lost to Seattle Academy, the No. 1 team in 1A (according to the AP poll), by five points in their second game of the year.
They also dropped a five-point contest to Cedar Park Christian of Bothell (No. 10), which is weird because the Eagles beat King’s, but are still below them in the rankings.
Herald Writer Aaron Lommers will be pleased to know that La Conner, a team he’s always advocating for in the weekly Herald rankings, is ranked No. 6 in the 2B poll. A loss to Highland Christian Prep is the only blemish on the Braves record.
La Conner recently surpassed the triple-digit mark with a 102-38 win over Orcas Island and, anyone who listens to the podcast will tell you, that greatly impresses me. I’d put the Braves No. 3, for three figures. And, that’s the number of one-loss teams ahead of them. If you’ve lost three games, like Colfax and Northwest Christian (Colbert) (which are both tied for fourth place) have, I think you should be behind La Conner.
Now we reach what I believe is the biggest oversight of the Associated Press poll: Cedar Park Christian (Mountlake Terrace). Its Bothell equivalent got a No. 10 ranking in 1A with a 10-0 record, and CPC-MLT is 13-0, and a perfect 2-0 in the Northwest 1A/2B conference, with a showdown against La Conner next Friday.
There isn’t one undefeated team left in the 2B or 1B conference – at least, none that are ranked – and I don’t see how this is possible. Maybe the level of competition is what’s hurting CPC-MLT. But, even if that’s the case, 13-0 is nothing to just brush off.
So, along with the Wesco North, #CPCMLTisrising.
The Wesco Conference actually is represented rather high here, with both the North and South making an appearance. The North is…never mind. You get it.
Lynnwood is the first local team, appearing at No. 5. Arlington is right behind them at No. 6. We actually put Arlington ahead of the Royals in the recent Herald poll, mostly because Lynnwood suffered its first loss of the season to Monroe while the Eagles remained a perfect 11-0. The two teams play on Wednesday, Jan. 16 and the winner of that game will probably end the year at No. 1 in The Herald poll, and have the inside track on a higher ranking in the AP poll.
Not surprising, Gonzaga Prep and Mt. Rainier at the top of the poll. A little surprising is the fact that the Jackson girls – and Snohomish girls – who have both come alive in recent weeks, didn’t receive any votes. I’d even go so far as to put the Timberwolves as No. 10 in the state, which will make Prep Editor, and Jackson girls advocate, Aaron Swaney very happy.
It’s amazing how right – and how incredibly wrong – the AP poll can be in just one classification. It nailed it, with Stanwood at No. 4. After seeing the Spartans with one of the most incredible comebacks I’ve ever seen last night, I’m more confident in Stanwood as ever. Even with losing seven seniors from last year’s team, the Spartans are good. And they’re going places. Like the 3A state tournament.
However, there are three great 3A teams in the Wesco South and none of them got so much as one vote in this poll. Glacier Peak and Shorewood are the fourth and fifth 3A teams in The Herald poll, respectively, and both could easily be one of the top 10 teams in the state. Or, at the very least, should be receiving some votes.
(If it’s not apparent by this point, I don’t get to vote in this poll.)
Full disclosure: I haven’t seen a Cascade Conference girls game this year. But I see that Archbishop Murphy is 7-0 in league (10-2 overall) and leading the Cascade Conference, with Cedarcrest right behind them. The teams have lost four games combined.
The Wildcats are ranked No. 4 with Cedarcrest at No. 10 in the 2A AP poll. After being quite critical of this poll thus far, I’ll just roll with these rankings until I know better. Based on what I’ve seen so far, they should probably be higher, but what can you do?
King’s got a little love in the AP poll, and I mean a very little bit of love. Two votes. The Knights are 8-5, which might not look as impressive as the 11-0 record of the top three teams (Freeman, Brewster and Cascade Christian). But at least King’s is on the AP poll radar, which is more than many other deserving local teams can say.
The final ranked teams in the area are Darrington and La Conner, which are tied with three other teams for No. 10 in 2B. The Loggers and Braves have six points, along with Tacoma Baptist, White Swan, La Conner and Onalaska.
Darrington is 11-2 this year and cruising. Mt. Vernon Christian (2-0 in league and 9-4 overall) is right behind the Loggers and could be appearing in the next edition of the AP rankings.
Well there you have it. Associated Press, consider your poll dissected! If you have any thoughts on the poll (or any thoughts on my thoughts) feel free to dissect away in the comments!