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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Oakland County rankings for week of Jan. 17, 2013

Erika Davenport (4), Clarkston, goes up high for a shot during girls varsity basketball action against Rochester Hills Stoney Creek at Clarkston Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012. (Special to The Oakland Press/LARRY McKEE)

Brooke Schwandt (42), Walled Lake Western, makes a pass before running into Waterford Kettering defender Sarah O'Connor during girls varsity basketball action at Kettering Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013. (Special to The Oakland Press/LARRY McKEE)

Nicole DiFiore of Pontiac Notre Dame Prep goes up for a 3-point shot during girls varsity basketball action against Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard at Notre Dame Prep Friday, Dec. 21, 2012. (Special to The Oakland Press/LARRY McKEE)

Madison Heights Bishop Foley’s Erin Similuk (40) defends against Waterford Our Lady of the Lake’s Haley Howell (32) during the second quarter of the game played on Monday Jan. 14, 2013 at Bishop Foley High School. The Lakers beat the Ventures 50-27. (Special to the Oakland Press/KEN SWART)

CLASS A TOP 5

1. Clarkston (9-1, 5-0 OAA Red)
— Road wins in the OAA’s Red Division are priceless, worth their weight in gold. Road wins over a top-5 team in the state, a team that had circled the game on the calendar, and brought the whole village to cheer it on? What’s more valuable than gold — platinum, maybe? Last week’s 37-35 road win over Southfield-Lathrup gives the Wolves a leg up in the league race, and claim on the top spot in the county. Shoot, it even helped the Wolves slide into the bottom of the state rankings, at No. 10 this week. (Last ranking: 2)

2. Southfield-Lathrup (9-1, 5-1 OAA Red)
— If you don’t think Feb. 14 has been circled in big, red pen on every calendar in Lathrup Village, you’re sadly mistaken. And, no, it’s not circled as a reminder for Valentine’s Day — although the Chargers would love to drop a little love note off in Clarkston’s mailbox that evening. That’s when Lathrup and Clarkston will get together again, likely with the OAA Red title on the line. Before that, Lathrup has to get through another circuit of the league, starting with Thursday’s Breast Cancer Awareness game against North Farmington, followed by a meeting with the state’s No. 1 team, Detroit Martin Luther King, in the MLK Showcase at Mount Clemens on Saturday. (Last ranking: 1)

3. Novi (9-1, 4-0 KLAA Central)
— If there’s radar to fly under, the Wildcats will find it. They just keep chugging along, having won four straight since their lone setback to the now-No. 4 team in Class A, Westland John Glenn. Novi’s latest wins are a seven-point decision over the Central Division co-leader, Northville, followed by a six-point road win over struggling Salem. (Last ranking: 3)

4. Waterford Kettering (8-1, 3-1 KLAA North)
— The Captains have won twice since dropping their first game of the season to Walled Lake Western (which dropped them out of the AP top 10), beating cross-town rival Mott by 23, and Lakeland by 13. That somewhat settles the North Division into a two-team race between Kettering and Western, making the Jan. 29 rematch a must-see event. (Last ranking: 5)

5. Walled Lake Western (8-2, 4-0 KLAA North)
— Western assumed the mantle of ‘division frontrunner’ with their 43-42 win over Kettering, and it showed in Tuesday’s two-point road squeaker against Waterford Mott. This is the year the Warriors have spent the last few seasons prepping for — now they just need to keep playing the way they have. (Last ranking: NR)

6. Oxford (9-1, 8-0 OAA White)
— There’s a ‘D’ in Oxford, and the Wildcats know how to use it. Oxford has allowed an average of just 36 points per game through the first half of the regular season, and their only loss of the season — seven games ago, a 38-29 setback to Lakeland — came when someone played better ‘D’ than they did. All stats aside, the one number that matters for Oxford is the zero in the loss column in the league. (Last ranking: NR)

7. Birmingham Marian (9-2, 1-2 CHSL Central)
— Playing in the Catholic League’s Central Division is kind of like being in a family. You’re allowed to pick on your siblings, but no one else is. The Mustangs are unbeaten outside the division, but have picked up two losses — one to Dearborn Divine Child and one to Livonia Ladywood — since divisional play began. (Last ranking: NR)

8. Farmington Hills Mercy (8-2, 2-1 CHSL Central)
— The Marlins rebounded nicely from losing to rival Marian last Friday, hammering Regina on Monday. Mercy gets its first crack at division-leading Dearborn Divine Child on Friday, a rematch of last year’s CHSL title game. (Last ranking: 4)

9. Farmingon Hills Harrison (10-1, 7-1 OAA White)
— After a visit to cross-town rival Farmington Friday, the Hawks get the rematch they’ve been itching for since November, hosting the league-leading Oxford Wildcats on Tuesday. Harrison has won nine straight since the first meeting. (Last ranking: NR)

10. Holly (9-1, 8-0 Flint Metro League)
 — After coming up short last season on their first Flint Metro League title since 1993, the Bronchos are making darn sure of it this season. They haven’t lost since their season opener at Hartland. (Last ranking: NR)



Class B-C-D Top 5

1. Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes (7-2, 3-0 CHSL East)
— The next two road games could settle the CHSL East, as the Lakers visit Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood on Saturday, then take the long trek to Marine City to face Cardinal Mooney on Jan. 24. Before Monday’s road win at Madison Heights Bishop Foley, the Lakers had been 0-2 away from home, losing the season opener at West Bloomfield, and a Dec. 18 contest at Dearborn Divine Child. (Last ranking: 1)

2. Birmingham Detroit Country Day (8-2)
— This was supposed to be the year that the Yellowjackets discovered how everyone else lived ... right? Tell that to their last six opponents, who’ve lost close games, blowouts and everything in between. But they’ve all lost. DCDS hosts Flint Northern on Thursday, then takes a trip to Ohio Saturday to take on Toledo Catholic Central. (Last ranking: 2)

3. Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (9-1, 3-0 CHSL AA)
— The Irish got past Monday’s “trap game” with ease, scoring the final 12 points of the game in a 46-34 win over once-beaten Ferndale, and can create some separation in the league race with a win over Macomb Lutheran North on Friday. (Last ranking: 3)

4. Birmingham Roeper (8-2, 3-2 MIAC)
— This still could be the year that the Roughriders take the league title away from Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett, but a 10-point loss to the Knights last week didn’t help. Roeper has three straight road games before a rematch with Liggett on Feb. 8. (Last ranking: 4)

T5. Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood (8-2, 2-0 CHSL East)
— The Cranes haven’t lost since Dec. 7, their six-game winning streak putting them on top of the East Division with Lakes. It could be a huge couple of days for the Cranes, who host Marine City Cardinal Mooney on Thursday and Lakes on Saturday. (Last ranking: 5)

T5. Ferndale (8-2, 5-0 OAA Blue)
— The Eagles have games against Bloomfield Hills Lahser and Birmingham Seaholm to go before they’re done with the first circuit through the Blue Division, but so far, it’s gone well in coach Eric Lloyd’s first year. Monday’s non-league loss to Notre Dame Prep wasn’t so much of a setback as it was a measuring stick. Feb. 5 is the rematch with a Royal Oak squad that will be itching for payback for a 42-39 loss in December. (Last ranking: NR)



PREVIOUS OAKLAND COUNTY RANKINGS: 1 / 2

ASSOCIATED PRESS STATE RANKINGS: 1 / 2

Last Updated: 1/17/2013 12:17:25 PM EST

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