by Gary Andrews
With the Manchester boys basketball sectional starting Tuesday, there is always the conversations of who is the favorite and what game will the upset come in.
In a seven-team field, with a composite win loss record of 61-80, with the best record being 14-7, it could be said the tournament is wide open. Just three teams in the field have a winning record with multiple inter sectional games being played throughout the season.
In Tuesday’s opening night match-up North Miami meets Oak Hill. The two teams met on Feb. 8 with Oak Hill winning 67-32. The winner of the game will meet Manchester in the first game on Friday. Manchester lost to Oak Hill 68-47 on Nov. 24th and defeated North Miami 56-42 Jan. 4.
Wednesday's opening game is Southwood playing Northfield. The teams have met twice this year with Southwood defeating Northfield 62-47 Dec. 29 for the county title. The Norse avenged the loss to the Knights Feb. 15, winning 52-45. Game two on Wednesday is Wabash taking on Lewis Cass. The two teams met Feb. 9 with Cass winning 86-67.
If you believe in the Sagarin rankings, Lewis Cass and Northfield are the top two picks to win the sectional, with the state picks being Lewis Cass and Oak Hill. Four of the teams in the sectional field have a winning record against the field with Cass being 2-0, Northfield 6-1, Southwood 5-2 and Oak Hill 3-2. Wabash has defeated three of the teams and Manchester has topped two.
With all the different contrasting styles of play and no team dominating the sectional field it really is ''wide open.''