When: Feb. 18 - 21
Where: Mandan High School
(D10) Center-Stanton (18-3)
(D9) Grant County (15-6)
(D10) Underwood (15-7)
(D9) Shiloh Christian (15-6)
(D9) Solen (11-9)
(D10) Wilton-Wing (13-9)
(D9) Flasher (9-12)
(D10) Washburn (9-13)
Who is the favorite?
I don’t think there is a clear favorite in the Region 5 tournament. Center-Stanton comes in with the best record but they’ve played a ton of close games against these seven other teams throughout the regular season and Underwood has beat them twice. I’ll give the Wildcats a slim advantage in this tournament but I also think a case can be made for each team to win the Region 5 title.
So, with that information, now what?
Heading into the final week of January, Grant County had a 9-6 record. The Coyotes won their final six games and captured a District 9 title. There’s two student-athletes who are making an impact this season that were on last year’s state championship team in sophomore Isabelle Boyer and junior Molly Wetzel. Those two know what it takes to grind out wins in the postseason and six straight wins has Grant County confident as ever.
Shiloh Christian has one of the taller players in Class B with sophomore Jacie Hall standing at 6-foot-2. The Skyhawks lost to Solen 54-51 in the District 9 tournament but ended the regular season on five straight wins including a victory over Solen. The Skyhawks also defeated Flasher and Grant County on back-to-back game nights in January and over Underwood and Washburn.
Underwood is the sneaky team in this tournament because they’ve looked stellar at times and flat out bad against top Class B teams. The Comets have two wins over Center-Stanton and victories over Wilton-Wing, Flasher and Washburn. Junior Taysha Snyder is a solid player for the Comets and with no seniors on the roster this team is built for success next year as well.
I’ll be honest predicting this tournament was the hardest thing I’ve done in past few days. I wouldn’t be surprised if all eight of these teams ended up booking hotels for the state tournament in Grand Forks.
Center-Stanton over Flasher
Solen over Wilton-Wing
Grant County over Washburn
Shiloh Christian over Underwood
Center-Stanton over Solen
Grant County over Shiloh Christian
Grant County over Center-Stanton