As I noticed a few days after it was published, and as was pointed out to me by North Harford head coach Jeff Burrows, I wrote in last week's column that Havre de Grace was the reigning UCBAC boys basketball champ, when it is actually North Harford, since the Hawks beat Havre de Grace in last season's conference final. My apologies, Hawks. Anyway, I'll keep this short, since this is about the busiest week of my entire year. The boys basketball power poll has had some slight changes since last week, and here they are (please take into account that the rankings were laid out before Wednesday's games):
1. Aberdeen: The Eagles remain atop the pile, thanks to victories over the red-hot Joppatowne squad, the not-so-hot Fallston Cougars and C. Milton Wright. The matchups I'm looking forward to are Edgewood at Aberdeen on Jan. 6, and Aberdeen at North Harford six days later.
2. North Harford: With another jump up the list, the Hawks have made the biggest move of any team since the season started. Monday's victory over CMW, which started North Harford's Chesapeake Division schedule, was a proper test of the Hawks, who were battered pretty well by departing seniors. They were beaten pretty soundly on Wednesday by Elkton, but I'm going to keep them in the second spot until they've played another division game, after the holiday break.
3. Edgewood: The Rams, who held down the second spot in my first two installments, fell down one spot with back-to-back losses, the most recent of which was a 57-54 nail-biter to Elkton. As I already mentioned, the Rams and Eagles square off in Aberdeen on Jan. 6; be there or be square.
4. Joppatowne: At 4-2 on the year thus far, the Mariners, who edged Harford Tech, 50-48, Tuesday, have lost to Aberdeen by six points and Edgewood by one point. Though they aren't checks in the win column, getting beat by two upper-division teams by a combined score of seven points is pretty nifty. I'm thinking the Mariners might take the Susquehanna Division this year, which means I have to amend something I wrote two weeks ago. I'll let you remember what it is.
5. Patterson Mill: Though they've only played four games, and they haven't come up on a strong team yet, the 3-0 Huskies have outscored their opponents, 312-149. Monday's 87-26 victory over Bo Manor had the highest point differential I can remember seeing in a boys basketball games. I recall Aberdeen working out on some so-so teams a few years ago and going up by 45 or 50 points, but a 61-point win is just ridiculous. I'm curious to see how the Huskies navigate through the Susquehanna Division.
6. Harford Tech: The Cobras, who set the tone for a weird season to come by topping Havre de Grace in their season opener, took Joppatowne to the limit Tuesday, but lost by just a pair of points. If all goes well, they will be jammed up at the top of the Susquehanna Division with Joppatowne, Patterson Mill and Bel Air at season's end.
7. C. Milton Wright: The Mustangs are 2-3 on the year with some big losses to strong teams, but it was Monday's 65-58 loss to North Harford that knocked them down a few notches. If they play like they did last year, they'll probably finish up with a sub-.500 division record, but having beat Aberdeen and Edgewood.
8. Havre de Grace: There's not much to go on for the Warriors, who recently beat North East in a non-division matchup, but then lost to the previously winless Fallston on Wednesday. I don't think they will win their third straight Chesapeake Division title, but that's as far as I'll go for right now.
9. Bel Air: The Bobcats very nearly pulled off a big upset last Friday night, taking the North Harford Hawks to overtime, only to lose 71-70 when the Hawks mounted a comeback in the game's final seconds.
10. Fallston: The Cougars snapped a seven-game losing skid with a victory on Wednesday, beating Havre de Grace. Could this signal a big turn-around for Fallston?