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High school basketball: La Crosse Central boys, Aquinas girls No. 1 in first AP rankings

High school basketball: La Crosse Central boys, Aquinas girls No. 1 in first AP rankings


The Central boys and Aquinas girls are in the No. 1 positions in their respective divisions in the first released Associated Press high school basketball rankings released on Monday.

The Red Raiders (6-0) lead No. 2 Onalaska (7-1) in Division 2 with their first meeting of the season scheduled for Jan. 17.

Central received eight of nine first-place votes, has won all of its games by at least 25 points, and the Hilltoppers suffered their only loss to Minnesota powerhouse Minnehaha Academy, which plays Central at Central on Feb. 1. The Redhawks, led by Gonzaga commit Jalen Suggs, also play at Caledonia on Jan. 17 and against Madison La Follette (7-0 and ranked second in Division 1) at the La Crosse Center on Jan. 18.

Blair-Taylor (5-0) received one first-place vote in Division 5 and is in the second position in Division 5. Bangor (6-0), which has played in the last two Division 5 state tournaments, is fourth and hosts the Wildcats on Jan. 11.

Sussex Hamilton is ranked first in Division 1, Racine St. Catherine's is first in Division 3, Cuba City is first in Division 4, and Sheboygan Lutheran is first in Division 5.

The Aquinas girls (10-1) lost their first game of the season at Hopkins (Minn.), which is ranked third nationally by USA Today, but has dominated every other opponent on the way to the No. 1 spot in Division 4.

The Blugolds received eight of nine first-place votes and held off No. 2 Melrose-Mindoro — state runner-up to Aquinas the last two years — and its 9-0 record after a 57-39 win over Onalaska on Saturday. The Mustangs have lost four games over the past three-plus seasons.

The Hilltoppers (7-2) are sixth in Division 2, where Central (-2) received four votes but didn't crack the top 10.

Prairie du Chien (7-2) is eighth and Arcadia (6-1) ninth in Division 3, and Bangor (7-1) is sixth in Division 5, where Blair-Taylor (6-0) received seven votes and just missed the top 10.

The Blackhawks suffered both of their losses to teams from Iowa, and the Raiders have only lost a four-point game to Division 2 Holmen. The Cardinals have only been beaten by Melrose-Mindoro, and the Wildcats have won all of their games by at least 12 points.

Bay Port has the top spot in Division 1, while Beaver Dam is first in Division 2. Platteville is No. 1 in Division 3, and Black Hawk is on top of Division 5.


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