The last week of the boys' basketball regular season is here, and with it comes the business of finishing up the area conference title races.|
Of the three, the Lincoln Trail Conference is the only one that has been all but wrapped up. Galva's 67-64 win over LTC Tournament champion Wethersfield last Tuesday, followed by Friday's 88-77 overtime win at Annawan, puts the 20-4 Wildcats at 8-0 in the league with only Sciota West Prairie (6-15, 1-6) and United (1-21, 0-8) left on their schedule.
The defending regular season LTC champs have already assured themselves of no worse than a tie for the title, as second-place Stark County (11-14, 7-2) and third-place Wethersfield (21-5, 6-2) each have two losses and have both lost to Galva. Mercer County (16-9) and Ridgewood (15-11) are both out of the running with their 5-3 league marks.
However, the issue is still in doubt in the West Central Conference's North Division, where Monmouth-Roseville and Rockridge (both 20-4) are tied for first with identical 7-2 records; and the Three Rivers Conference, where Kewanee's (21-4) 13-0 league mark has it just a game up on second-place Sterling Newman (22-3, 12-1).
WCC North: Rockridge had a chance to all but lock up the conference crown last Friday when it welcomed Monmouth-Roseville to the Rockets' pad. However, the much-improved Titans spoiled those plans with a hard-fought 69-65 victory before a packed house that created the deadlock, with each having one division game to play on Friday.
Monmouth-Roseville wraps up its league slate at home, welcoming Sherrard (6-19, 1-8) to the Shoebox for the Titans' senior night. However, the Tigers' record could be misleading, as coach Barry Jackson's club has scored a pair of impressive one-point wins over Kewanee (68-67) and Carthage Illini West (71-70).
The latter victory by Sherrard also has a bearing on the race, as it knocked Illini West (14-12) into third place at 6-3. Had the Chargers won, they would have forged a three-way tie with only a Friday road trip to Orion (16-11, 3-6) remaining.
Rockridge hits the road to Macomb (5-16, 3-6) to wrap up its final season of WCC North competition before joining the TRAC-9 next winter. Although going through a down season, the Bombers still could be a formidable test as Macomb has traditionally been a tough road trip for any team.
Three Rivers: An earlier 58-56 homecourt win over Newman at Brockman Gymnasium is the difference-maker for Kewanee in the TRAC-9 standings.
The Boilermakers wrap up conference play tonight as they celebrate Senior Night by welcoming a tough Bureau Valley squad (19-10, 7-6) that is looking to mark former Storm standout Jason Marquis' first year as head coach with a winning conference record.
With Newman closing league play against last-place Morrison (4-23, 0-12) tonight at home, that almost makes a Kewanee win over BV an imperative task if the Boilers are to earn the outright championship.
Riverdale (13-13, 8-5) looks to take a winning record into next week's Class 2A regionals with a Senior Night win this evening against Fulton (6-22, 3-9). Erie (15-13, 6-6) travels to Prophetstown (13-13, 6-7) in a rivalry matchup of teams wrangling with Riverdale and BV to land in third place.
Contact Area beat reporter Terry Duckett at firstname.lastname@example.org
Moline, IL Details
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