Pagosa Springs, Colorado Springs Christian and Kent Denver all collected important wins last week as teams continue to work for better seeding in district and state tournament brackets.  Pagosa Springs topped Centauri in the first of two battles inside the IML and Colorado Springs Christian made the Tri Peaks a two-team chase with St Mary’s by edging Lamar.  Kent Denver also beat Colorado Academy last Saturday to remain tied with Lutheran atop the Metro.
Cedaredge also ended their perfect season with a loss to Grand Valley but since the Bruins have a win over league unbeaten Delta, we kept them ahead of the Panthers at #2 behind Moffat County on the Western Slope.  Bennett and Academy battle Tuesday for control of the Frontier chase while the Patriot sees key matchups between Eaton-Resurrection Christian on Tuesday and Resurrection Christian-Sterling on Friday.  All three teams involved have yet to suffer a league loss.
Our first order of business this week is to project the two automatic qualifiers from each district.

#1 Bennett #1 Sterling
#2 Academy #2 Eaton
#1 Kent Denver #1 Pagosa Springs
#2 Lutheran #2 Centauri
#1 St Mary’s #1 Moffat County
#2 Colorado Springs Christian #2 Cedaredge
#1 Weld Central
#2 Eagle Ridge Academy

With those predictions in mind, we first seed the district champions and at-large teams in order by RPI as published on Monday January 29th.  Please note that Bennett and Weld Central are projected district champions but are not in the RPI top 16.  As a result, they’re replaced in the top eight by at large squads Centauri and Cedaredge.  Colorado Springs Christian is the highest seeded non-league champion in our projections.

  1. St Mary’s
  2. Kent Denver
  3. Colorado Springs Christian (at large)
  4. Centauri (at large)
  5. Pagosa Springs
  6. Cedaredge (at large)
  7. Moffat County
  8. Sterling

Next up is the rest of the bracket which is filled out by automatic qualifiers and at-large teams based on RPI standings.  Stargate (29th), Strasburg (30th) and Coal Ridge (32nd) are in the top 32 of RPI points but would not make the field in our projections.  Weld Central is ranked 34th, Eagle Ridge Academy 40th, and Bennett 42nd are outside the top 32 but would get in as automatic qualifiers from their district.  Strasburg is also ahead of Academy (31st) in the RPI but the Wildcats would get in ahead of Strasburg as an automatic qualifier from the Frontier.

  1. Lamar
  2. Resurrection Christian
  3. Jefferson Academy
  4. Grand Valley
  5. Eaton
  6. Delta
  7. Colorado Academy
  8. Manitou Springs
  9. Vanguard
  10. Salida
  11. St Mary’s Academy
  12. Lutheran
  13. Liberty Common
  14. Faith Christian
  15. Alamosa
  16. Brush
  17. University
  18. Roaring Fork
  19. Skyview Academy
  20. Buena Vista
  21. Academy (automatic qualifier)
  22. Weld Central (projected district champion outside top 32)
  23. Eagle Ridge Academy (projected district qualifier outside top 32)
  24. Bennett (projected district qualifier outside top 32)

With 32 teams selected, the field can now be projected.  Teams seeded in spots 25-32 could be moved to help limit travel.  Also note that the field is NOT RESEEDED once the first two rounds are complete and the bracket will be played out completely from start to finish.  For our projections, we produce a true seed and do not move any teams within the bracket.  But more than likely, the Sterling-University and Moffat County-Roaring Fork matchups would likely be changed to avoid teams from the same league pairing up in round one.  Two other possibilities in that scenario include changing Manitou Springs-Vanguard and Jefferson Academy-Faith Christian.

#1 St Mary’s vs #32 Bennett #8 Sterling vs #25 University
#16 Manitou Springs vs #17 Vanguard #9 Lamar vs #24 Brush
#4 Centauri vs #29 Academy #5 Pagosa Springs vs #28 Buena Vista
#13 Eaton vs #20 Lutheran #12 Grand Valley vs #21 Liberty Common
#3 Colorado Springs Christian vs #30 Weld Central #6 Cedaredge vs #27 Skyview Academy
#14 Delta vs #19 St Mary’s Academy #11 Jefferson Academy vs #22 Faith Christian
#2 Kent Denver vs #31 Eagle Ridge Academy #7 Moffat County vs #26 Roaring Fork
#15 Colorado Academy vs #18 Salida #10 Resurrection Christian vs #23 Alamosa