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GIRLS' BASKETBALL: LOCAL TEAMS IN CONTENTION FOR TOP SPOTS FOR DISTRICTS (2021-02-16)

Northern Tier Sports Report
The girls’ NTL standings aren’t as close as the boys - NEB has already clinched the Division-2 title while Towanda has a two game lead in the Division-I - but the races for district seeding are just as hot.

DISTRICT IV

CLASS AA

S. Williamsport     (7-0, .714)

Mt. Carmel           (11-3, .680)

So. Col.               (8-3, .647)

NEB                     (10-3, .625)

Wyalusing           (7-3, .550)

E. Juniata            (8-2, .545)

Millville                (5-2, .523)

Muncy                 (6-4, .452)

NPM                   (4-4, .382)

Canton                (4-7, .324)

Williamson         (4-10, .284)


The Panthers appear safely in the top four, though they have some tough games slated to finish out the year, with Athens, Loyalsock and Towanda. A strong finish could sneak them up into the top three. Either way, they will have a first round home game.


Wyalusing is battling for that fifth spot, trying to hold off East Juniata and Millville. The Rams might rather stay matched up with NEB, and make a short trip over the hill, rather than the long bus ride down to Columbia County.


They have Towanda and Canton this week, and always have to play Athens again, along with NP-Mansfield twice.


South has largely stuck to their Mid-Penn schedule, though they boast a win over Montoursville. They need at least 10 games to qualify for districts, and with inclement weather affecting things this week, expect them to be busy the final week to ensure their spot.


Mt. Carmel has two closes losses to NCC and Southern Columbia, followed by a blow-out loss to Loyalsock. They have Hazleton and Bloomsburg left on the docket as part of a tough finish to the season.


Southern Columbia has lost to Loyalsock, Bloomsburg and Nativity. They have to play Bloomsburg, NCC and Williamsport before the end of the season.


East Juniata has Line Mountain and Midd-West in District IV left to play, along with a host of District III teams. Millville has a tough final leg with Bloomsburg, NCC and Sullivan County left, among other teams.


Muncy has a mix of tough and winnable games left in their last four as they look to hold off NP-Mansfield for the final spot. Covid-19 issues have sidelined the Tigers, and it remains to be seen when they can play again.


Canton would need a very strong finish to reach the top eight, with Williamson, Athens, Wyalusing and NP-Liberty (twice), left on the schedule.


CLASS AAA

Bloomsburg         (12-1, .789)

Loyalsock            (13-2, .720)

Towanda             (11-1, .683)

Hughesville         (6-7, .506)

Warrior Run         (4-5, .494)

Line Mountain     (6-8, .395)

Wellsboro            (3-6, .382)

Troy                    (4-8, .381)

CMVT                (0-10, .149)


Towanda’s chances of breaking into the top two took a hit with their loss to Sullivan County. They would likely need some help from the Lancers to surpass them, along with finishing the season undefeated. Towanda still has Wyalusing, Athens and NEB, among other teams, left on their schedule.


The Lady Trojans are just a tenth of a percentage point out of the six spot, so if they can pull out a mini win streak, they could move up there. They have Towanda, Williamson, Wellsboro (twice), CV and NP-Mansfield left.


The Hornets have four league games left: NP-Liberty, Towanda, NP-Mansfield and Troy.


Top seed Bloomsburg has seemed more human lately, with a loss to Mt. Carmel and a close win over NCC. Though, they did beat Southern Columbia by 17 points after that. They have Mahanoy and Mt. Carmel, among other teams, left on the schedule.


The Lancers have NEB, Warrior Run, Tyrone and Linden Hall left, so a few losses aren’t out of the question.


Hughesville still has to play South Williamsport, Southern Columbia and Warrior Run while the Lady Defenders have Mt. Carmel, Loyalsock, NCC and Hughesvile left, so there could be some flip-flopping between the two down the stretch.


Line Mountain boasts quite a few of their league games, along with Bloomsburg, so their spot in the standings is far from assured.


CLASS AAAA

Athens        (12-3, .602)

Lewisburg   (9-4, .601)

Shamokin   (6-4, .582)

C. Columbia (5-9, .465)

Danville      (4-6, .434)

Midd-West  (5-7, .430)

Milton         (4-7, .407)

MIfflinburg   (4-8, .398)

Montoursville (2-9, .357)

Jersey Shore (2-8, .340)


The Wildcats have a very tenuous hold on top of the Class AAAA standings. They still have big games against Towanda, Wyalusing and NEB left on the season as they try to hold off Lewisburg.


The Green Dragons have Shamokin, Danville, Selinsgrove and Central Mountain left to play. Shamokin still has a chance for the top spot with Lewisburg and Selinsgrove left to play.


At the other end Milton and Mifflinburg are in a battle for the 7-8 spot. Either way, Athens will likely host the first two rounds.


CLASS A

NCC           (13-2, .666)

Sullivan C.  (6-4, .539)

Lourdes      (9-6, .487)

NPL            (4-6, .362)

Neumann   (5-6, .357)

Montgomery (7-8, .353)

MCS          (4-9, .299)

Juniata C.  (5-6, .287)

Bucktail      (2-7, .248)

Benton       (1-10, .217)

CV             (1-13, .210)


NP-Liberty is hanging on to a home game in the district playoffs by a thin margin with a few tough games coming up: NEB, Wellsboro and Towanda. They also have Canton twice, along with a Williamson, to try to hold onto that spot.


They should be able to stay in the top six no matter how they finished the season.


Neumann has Benton, NP-Mansfield, Milton, Bucktail and St. Joseph’s Academy left. Meadowbrook has Grace Prep, Juniata Mennonite, CMVT, Bucktail and Columbia County Christian. 


Though, it remains to be seen if them or Juniata Christian decide to compete in the district playoffs.


NCC appears to be running away with the top spot, though Sullivan seems to be finding their groove with their win over Towanda on Saturday. Lourdes is always a tough out as well.


NTL

LARGE SCHOOL (DIVISION-1)

Towanda          (9-0)

Athens             (9-2)

Wyalusing       (7-3)

NPM                (3-4)

Troy                 (3-7)

Wellsboro        (2-6)


The Knights have a 2-game lead in the loss column over Athens, and play the Wildcats on the road in their final meeting. They also have Wyalusing, Troy and Wellsboro one more time, along with NP-Mansfield twice.


So, while there’s work to be done, they’re definitely in the driver’s seat.


Athens would likely need to beat Towanda, and hope another team beats them, in order to grab at least a share of the title.


Wyalusing would need more help - such as going undefeated the rest of the way, while also seeing Towanda and Athens get multiple losses.


SMALL SCHOOL (DIVISION-2)

NEB         (9-2)

NPL          (4-5)

Canton     (4-5)

Williamson (3-10)

CV            (1-10)


The Panthers have clinched the division title, their second straight.


If there was going to be an NTL Showdown the battle for second between NP-Liberty and Canton would be close, especially since the two teams have to play each other twice.




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