MWPA Releases Week 2 Poll
The Michigan Water Polo Association's (MWPA) week two coach's poll is back after a one week hiatus due to low volume of games. More than 200 games will be played in the next month of play. Top Ten Rankings will run until the final week of the regular season.
1 - Hudsonville Eagles (9-1) - #1 P.R.I. (.8385)
The Eagles are unbeaten in play against in-state foes and return from Spring break and go right to work with a rematch of last year's state championship game as they take on the Rockford Rams tomorrow (April 11). Ian Hewett's Eagles won the first match-up by two, and have been mostly the same - dominant early this season.
2 - East Grand Rapids Pioneers (7-3-1) - #3 P.R.I. (.6862)
Much like the rest of Polo West, the Pio's were idle last week. But their prodigious strength of schedule (.694, 2nd in the State), to go with their 6-3 in state record has turned some heads early. Raheem Brown's Pioneers get #4 Jenison to return from a well deserved holiday after playing their brutal early schedule. It might in fact get even harder for EGR. On deck? East Kentwood and Rockford.
3 - Rockford Rams (8-2) - #2 P.R.I. (.7003)
They went a little up-and-down into the break, falling convincingly to an East Grand Rapids team (now 1-1 vs. EGR this season), but turning around and turning the offense on three nights later. The Rams are a strong 8-2 this season as the challenging portion of their schedule begins to take shape. Katie Clarin's state runners-up are in a dead heat battle with perhaps as many as six or seven other teams for the right to challenge the reigning champions.
4 - Jenison Wildcats (8-2) - #4 P.R.I. (.6647)
Jenison finished third at the state tournament last year and record-wise, is back to a good start under Spencer Sanders. At 8-2, the Wildcats have three top ten wins already (second most in the state), and they'll get a crack at moving up in the state when they face-off with #2 East Grand Rapids this week (April 11). The next stretch of games seees the Wildcats facing off mostly with teams behind them in the PRI, but they wrap the regular season at EK, Hudsonville and Rockford.
5 - East Kentwood Falcons (7-4) - #6 P.R.I. (.6381)
The Falcons have been off for almost a full two weeks but turn around and go right back to work in a week that'll see them tangle with #2 East Grand Rapids (April 13). The torrid start by the Falcons was muddied a bit by a stiff finish to their first half schedule (Rockford, East Grand Rapids Hudsonville, Naperville North (IL). Jarod Lane's Falcons are still very much a threat in a ridiculously tough District 2.
6 - Ann Arbor Skyline Eagles (4-1-1) - #5 P.R.I. (.6613)
After a long break, the Eagles return to action straight into the fire. District Play opens April 11 and 13 with two much improved teams (Saline-Milan & Chelsea). Their lone loss came by one goal to a strong East Kentwood team to open the season. Rebecca Godek's Eagles represent the top ranked East team, and given their start could climb quickly if they can maintain their good defensive structure.
7 - Ann Arbor Pioneer Pioneers (6-6-1) - #7 P.R.I. (.5733)
One of the few busy teams over the last two weeks, the Pioneers chose to test their mettle with a trip to Illinois at the always excellent Fenwick. The Pioneers learned a lot, won a game and played a close one with an Oakville (Missouri) team as well. They returned to Michigan, shutout District foe Chelsea and then narrowly lost to Ann Arbor Huron. Will Hart's crew has some defensive skill (big shock there!) and gets a trip to Groves, Troy and Mason this week.
8 - Chelsea Bulldogs (6-4) - #9 P.R.I. (.5197)
The Bulldogs are off to one of the best start's in school history and after some bumps of late, are still in the poll. It's the first time the Bulldogs have been in the poll in consecutive weeks. Jess Hinderer's Bulldogs have a big week with district games against Ann Arbor Huron and Ann Arbor Skyline in a District 4 that no one can predict.
9 - Ann Arbor Huron (3-5) - #11 P.R.I. (.4369)
Four consecutive District 4 teams in the rankings, you can look at the record but Huron has played the sixth strongest schedule in the MWPA to date. The River Rats came back from the break and picked up a nice ranked win against #7 Ann Arbor Pioneer. This week, they go back-to-back with District games against #8 Chelsea and Dexter at home. First year bench boss JoLynn Montgomery gets to see some West side skill next week with East Lansing, East Kentwood and Jenison on the schedule.
10 - Forest Hills (3-3) - #10 P.R.I. (.5184)
Forest Hills went into the break on a high note with back-to-back wins under Sara Fredricks guidance. Now they return with games against Zeeland, and a District tango with #3 Rockford. They head to the mid-state for a tournament day at Mason coming up, and in a seven day stretch, they have an opportunity to cement themselves as a contender in District 2. Mason, East Grand Rapids and East Lansing WPC come in an April 17-24 stretch.
On the Line - Walled Lake, Salin-Milan
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 Mondays during the season Inquiries on the poll can be directed to the chat feature on the MWPA website. Answering times may vary.