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BALL FIVE: With this field there will be no upsets at State B tourney

Those of us who remember the 1985 State B Basketball Tournament can fondly recall when an upstart Mobridge Tigers upset top seed Armour in the first round of the tourney. The Tigers then went on to defeat another tourney favorite in Castlewood to take third place. Those Tigers finished the season with a 13-12 record. Those wins were upsets.
There will not be any of those kinds of upsets during the Girls State Class B Basketball Tournament in Aberdeen. You want to know why? It’s because there are no upstart teams in the field.
Oh sure, maybe on Friday morning you’ll hear some sportscaster saying there was a major upset in the B tournament when eight seed Tripp-Delmont/Armour shocked one seed Faith, but they will be exaggerating. They will be exaggerating greatly. While Faith is a perfect 23-0 on the season, Tripp-Delmont/Armour has nearly as impressive a record at 20-3. Maybe the Amour third of T-D/A will feel a little closure from the ’85 game, but come on, the Tigers were 11-11 when they beat Armour that day.
I don’t think there has ever been a field, in boys or girls state tournaments, that has had the up-and-down-the-field strength that this state tournament has. All you need to know is that the eight seed is 20-3. The two seed Hanson is also 20-3. So is four seed Warner and seven seed Avon. Half the field is 20-3. The rest are three seed Sully Buttes at 22-1, five seed Castlewood at 20-2 and six seed Ethan at 21-2.
The field’s combined record is 166-17. That’s a winning percentage of just a tick less than 91 percent.
While Faith is the number one seed, I don’t think the Lady Longhorns can be considered one of the favorites to win the title. Their schedule just wasn’t strong enough. They did beat Timber Lake twice and we know the Lady Panthers are a very good team this year, but that’s just about it for Faith’s resume.
Sully Buttes is ranked third and has just one loss this year, but it was by 15 points to Warner. Until someone beats the Chargers, they have to be considered a favorite for the title.
I know very little about Hanson except that they barely escaped Timber Lake in the Round of 16 and could very easily be watching this weekend while the Lady Panthers could be playing. I know nothing about the aforementioned Tripp-Delmont/Armour. I know just as little about Castlewood, Avon or Ethan.
That leaves me with Warner. The Lady Monarchs are, I think, the most impressive team in the field. They beat Sully Buttes 50-35 when the Chargers were ranked number one in state. They ended the regular season with a 67-42 win over Belle Fourche, the number one seed in the Class A tournament. They did suffer three losses, but the first two were to Dakota Valley (16-4 in Class A), Irene-Wakonda (18-2 in Class B). Their last loss? It came on Jan. 13 in Mitchell, a 46-44 loss to four-time Class A defending champion St. Thomas More. STM is the number two seed and the favorite in Class A.
Mark my words. Unless it’s one of the other seven teams, the Warner Lady Monarchs will win th