MWPA News Wire
MWPA Week 5 Girls Rankings
A new number one headlines the Girls MWPA Week Five Rankings after a roller coaster weekend in the polls.
Below is a breakdown of the week that was for each squad.
#1 Ann Arbor Huron River Rats
There is, for the first time this season, a new number one. Though they took to the water but once last week (a 16-1 victory), the River Rats are 12-1 and haven't looked back since a narrow 3-2 loss to former #1 Hudsonville early in the campaign. What about their closest games since? A five and a six goal margin (victory) over ranked teams. Ever since, everything has been near double digits for Mary Chatigny's monster team who draws from experience and star power. A big test looms in #4 ELODH this week for the River Rats, which should give a pretty good indicator of exactly how good this team is.
#2 Hudsonville Eagles
Funnily enough, the four time defending state champions were the number one team in the state a grand total of ONCE last year (the preseason poll), dropping as low as fourth. It's not unfamiliar territory for Ian Hewett's Eagles who had a roller coaster week. They trailed #5 Grandville 4-1 near halftime and blasted off for a 7-2 run to win the game, then dispatched Grand Haven. A loss to Adlai Stevenson (Illinois) was followed by a big poll upset as the #7 Rockford Rams won 6-4 AT Hudsonville in the Hudsonville-Zeeland tournament. Hudsonville rebounded for a quality win over #4 ELODH hours later to finish the weeend on a brighter note. They're headed for #6 Jenison this week trying to earn a few more quality W's.
#3 Rockford Rams
TAKE A BOW! A fantastic week for the Rockford Rams who flipped the script on just about everyone to leap four spots in the poll this week. They avenged an early-season loss to East Kentwood with a 6-5 win on Tuesday, then upset #1 Hudsonville on the road Friday, played competitively with Adlai Stevenson (Illinois), avenged another earlier season loss with a 4-3 win over #5 Grandville, and handed #3 Jenison the same result, a 4-3 loss. Katie Clarin's Rams got off to a bit of a slow start but they're beginning to evolve - making the looming postseason a whole lot more interesting.
#4 ELODH Co-Op
Dear ELODH - we still don't have a mascot for you! The Unicorns? The Mudbugs? The Hippogriffs! We like that one. Get back to us, will you? Maybe when you're done being sweet at polo? We might be waiting a long time for that - ELODH picked up a pair of quality wins with a 5-3 winner over then #6 East Kentwood and Oak Park (Illinois). They fell to Adlai Stevenson (Illinois) and #1 Hudsonville, but Madi Zink's group is 10-5 with, get this, District 2's only winning record against top ten teams. Not too shabby at all.
#5 Grandville Bulldogs
After their 8 am Saturday meeting with Jenison, it looked like Grandville was about to rocket up the polls - then they met the aforementioned Rockford squad that just ground every team down and well, here are the Bulldogs. It started out as a promising looking week - a 3-goal lead near halftime at home against #1 Hudsonville. It didn't hold up. Playing half JV and Varsity two days later, the Dawgs picked up a District win over West Ottawa, then toppled #6 East Kentwood by double digits. They had their four-goal victory over former #3 Jenison next before falling to now #3 Rockford, but turned around for a 10-1 win over Forest Hills (RV) to cap off a 3-2 week that Aubrie Scott and Chloe Graverson's Bulldogs can build on.
#6 Jenison Wildcats
By no means was last week a cakewalk for former #3 Jenison - they got a third meeting with #5 Grandville and fell. Forest Hills who has been a thorn to play lately kept it a two-goal game. They fell by one to now #3 Rockford as well. The good news for Jenison? Spencer Sanders and his Cat Pack get a crack at Hudsonville, Rockford AND Grandville all before the end of the regular season. The J Cats are still second in the state in total victories (15) and have the District's second best mark vs. top ten teams (7-4).
#7 East Kentwood Falcons
With all the movement in the polls, someone was bound to be the victim of some rebound results (Definition: When a team wins the first match up narrowly, and narrowly falls in the next. I made this up just now!). They took a one-goal loss to #7 Rockford, then, shorthanded, fell to #5 Grandville and took a narrow loss to #4 ELODH. All-in-all, Jarod Lane's Falcons are still one of just six double-digit game winners and have done just fine in their region. They're looking for a top ten win this week at East Grand Rapids.
#8 East Grand Rapids Pioneers
It was just a two game week for East Grand Rapids who opened their District schedule with a win over Forest Hills. In a fairly close game on the road, the Pioneers managed to grind it out for a win, but it further illustrates that Forest Hills continues to cause problems for teams up the polls. The Pioneers this week have a pivotal slate - they host the team directly in front of them tomorrow (East Kentwood) and follow it up with a road trip to #3 Rockford, both in District play. District Two is shaping up to be hotly contested as we go down to the wire, and EGR has as good a shot as any to make interesting results happen.
#9 Ann Arbor Skyline Eagles
Well, we can say this - Skyline didn't lose last week! (Spoiler: They had the week off). Sorry, we crack ourselves up. They went into the break with two results that showed progress - an 8-2 loss to Ann Arbor Huron where THE GODEK EFFECT was in full force, narrowing an earlier margin of defeat later in the season, and then rolled past Dexter using a blend of JV and Varsity players. They host Birmingham Seaholm and travel to #10 Ann Arbor Pioneer later this week for a District game as they attempt to continue their mid-season heat up.
#10 Ann Arbor Pioneer Pioneers
The Pio's Played to a 1-1 week in District Seed action last week to hold their spot at #10 in the polls. An early week loss to Ann Arbor Huron was healed days later by a win over Saline/Milan at home. It sets up for Pioneer to take on ELODH this week, then return to action hosting Ann Arbor Skyline in their District Seed game. The Pioneers already have a win over Chelsea and have put themselves in a position to finish with a winning record in District Seed play under Will Hart this season if they can take care of business down the stretch.
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On the Line: Chelsea (88), Zeeland (71), Forest Hills (68)
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. Polls will be updated Monday's at 11 am (Girls) and noon (Boys) ET. Inquiries on the poll can be directed to the chat feature on the MWPA website. Answering times may vary.
What is On the Line?: On the Line is the first three teams outside of the MWPA Poll. Coaches vote weekly during the season.