MWPA Announces Week 5 Girls Top Ten
The Michigan Water Polo Association (MWPA) has announced the week 5 top ten rankings.
A full breakdown on each team is below.
#1 East Grand Rapids Pioneers
The Pioneers breezed through another week, outscoring a pair of top ten opponents 30-8 over the course of about 16 hours. Justin Hulsebus' runaway freight train hasn't been stopped yet. They played a one goal game with #2 Hudsonville, they topped #5 Ann Arbor Huron 10-6 this week, and are rocking the same record as the 2007 regular season New England Patriots (or the opposite of the '08 Lions, whichever one comes to mind first) at 16-0. They've gone outside the region for four wins, they're 9-0 against top ten teams, 6-0 in their district, yeah there's a lot to like here as they head for the District 2 Tournament.
#2 Hudsonville Eagles
The Eagles are up to 13-2, their only losses coming to #1 and #3 on the season, though the Eagles atoned for the latter this week with a 12-5 win over #3 Rockford. Ian Hewett's Eagles are still the three-time defending state champions and are locked into the top spot in District 1 headed for the postseason with one regular season game left on the schedule. This week was an impressive one for the Eagles, a nine-goal win over #10, a six goal margin over #5 and an 11-goal margin over #8 at the Rockford tournament this past weekend.
#3 Rockford Rams
Real hard to scoff at what the Rams did this week...in fact it's flat out pretty sweet. They won an overtime game over #7 Zeeland on their own senior night, turned around and beat the dangerous #6 Hotel/Okemos Co-Op in a District game the next night before falling to #2 Hudsonville. Then they woke up, took down #8 Skyline by four, and #5 Huron by three. Katie Clarin's Rams were 4-1, all against teams int he top eight, boosted their top ten record to 8-3, they now have the second most wins in the state on either the boys or girls side (18) and sit 18-3 overall. They're the two seed this week behind EGR headed in Districts.
#4 Grandville Bulldogs
It was as quiet a week as the Bulldogs have had all year, but it didn't lack for important wins. The Bulldogs defeated #10 Jenison 11-5 in their district seed game and swamped Grand Ledge 12-2 on senior night for a 2-0 mark. Mitch Fountain's Bulldogs have 19 wins, the most in the state for either boys or girls polo, have played the most games (24) for either boys or girls polo, and have only lost to teams ranked inside the top three in the state all year. They draw a pivotal game tonight (May 10). They visit #7 Zeeland as the two teams fight for the #2 seed in District 1. It's unlikely to be their last meeting this week...if the two advance beyond the first round at Districts, they'll play eachother in the District Semi-Finals: Both games this week come at Zeeland.
#5 Ann Arbor Huron River Rats
The Rats took some lumps at the hands of #1, #2 and #3 in the state this week. They fell 10-6 to top ranked East Grand Rapids, 9-3 to #2 Hudsonville and 6-3 to #3 Rockford over the course of 24 hours. The River Rats did pick up wins over #8 Skyline and Lake Orion this week, and still have a strong resume, having not lost to a team ranked further back than fifth this season as they prepare for the postseason as the East Region's highest ranked team.
#6 Hotel/Okemos Co-Op
The theme in these rankings is mostly quiet, very little if any movement, and Hotel/Okemos did their part to stay steady. Madi Zink's squad fell 11-8 to #3 Rockford in their District game, but turned around and beat #10 Jenison 6-5 on a back-to-back. They Co-Op also defeated #8 Ann Arbor Skyline this week and lost just one game. Hotel/Okemos is third in District 2, who has three teams in the top six.
#7 Zeeland Dux
Dave Vruggink's squad has a big one this evening at home when they take on #4 Grandville tonight for the #2 seed in District 1. Look at District 1, where District 2 has three in the top six, this one has three in the top seven and one more ranked as well. It's a deep group and the higher you seed, the better. They took #3 Rockford to overtime this week and fell 7-6 and pose a big spoiler threat from the seven spot. The Dux will have a job on their hands as everyone fights for posturing headed towards what is expected to be a hotly contested West Regional Tournament.
#8 Ann Arbor Skyline Eagles
Getting better can be as simple as playing great teams. The Eagles did that this week. They fell to #2, #3, #5, #6, but scrapped and clawed their way through each game. Rebecca Godek's recipe appears to be play good teams and learn, and as the calendar flips to May, no one wants to be matched up with her and her Eagle squad. They've given every team in District 4 troubles, and should they find their way to regionals, they'll be an extraordinarily challenging out for anyone.
#9 Jenison Wildcats
Nicole Vos had a challenging week but coaches see what damage they can do. They played #6 Hotel/Okemos to a one-goal loss, ran past East Kentwood whose goaltending always gives teams trouble, but fell to #4 Grandville and #2 Hudsonville this week. One thing always seems to be true about Jenison: They are not a fun postseason match-up. Vos coached teams learn, adjust and attack weaknesses well later in seasons, and the District 1 tournament is an excellent opportunity for the Cats to show their claws.
#10 Saline Hornets
The Hornets are back in the rankings after a few weeks on the outside. They've drifted in and out but played well against some good teams. Nathan Barnett's Hornets were quiet this week with a 15-4 win over Walled Lake. They're 3-2 in their last five with losses to #6 Hotel/Okemos and a one-goal loss to then #10 Ann Arbor Skyline. Watch out for the Hornets who have some dynamic attacking talent in the postseason.
On the Line: Birmingham Seaholm, East Kentwood, Birmingham Groves
What is "On The Line?": The first three teams outside the MWPA Poll in terms of percentage points - listed for context.
Understanding the Poll: The poll, open to all MWPA Head Coaches, is ranked via a point-percentage scoring model. The points column is percentage of points scored by voters against the maximum total, which is based on number of voters. The period that would signify percentage has been dropped off the beginning of each number.
Unanimous first place ranking nets a score of 1,000 points.
Coaches vote weekly during the season. Polls will be updated Monday's during the mid day. Inquiries on the poll can be directed to the chat feature on the MWPA website. Answering times may vary.