Video: Top 5 Plays of April
The interloper has big plans.
The final boys volleyball rankings have been released and the Division I and Division II brackets have been released. The usual suspects – Desert Vista, Boulder Creek, Gilbert, Brophy – are among the top teams, but they are separated by a newcomer.
Desert Ridge earned the third seed in Division I with a 29-2 overall record and 17-1 in power ranking matches. Not bad for a program that rarely had a winning season or made the playoffs until 2013.
"Teams started to realize we weren't the same old Desert Ridge," said senior Justin West
, a versatile outside hitter and sparkplug player. "They look at us differently, and now they put a target on us as a team they want to beat."
The Jaguars will host a first-round playoff game on Saturday with hopes of fulfilling a four-year plan to break into the Arizona elite stratosphere.
"It's been a process but it is great seeing it come together like we had hoped it would at some point," Desert Ridge coach Cassie Forsgren said.
Here is a look at the first-round matchups.Division I
No. 16 Chandler
at No. 1 Desert Vista (Phoenix)
No. 9 Hamilton (Chandler)
at No. 8 Gilbert
No. 12 Basha (Chandler)
at No. 5 Highland (Gilbert)
No. 13 Higley (Gilbert)
at No. 4 Perry (Gilbert)
No. 14 Mountain View (Tucson)
at No. 3 Desert Ridge (Mesa)
No. 11 Mesa
at No. 6 Corona del Sol (Tempe)
No. 10 Brophy College Prep (Phoenix)
at No. 7 O'Connor (Phoenix)
No. 15 Deer Valley (Glendale)
at No. 2 Boulder Creek (Anthem)Division II
Sunrise Mountain (Peoria)
vs. No. 1 Seton Catholic (Chandler)
No. 9 Cactus (Glendale)
vs. No. 8 Williams Field (Gilbert)
No. 12 Ironwood Ridge (Tucson)
vs. No. 5 Mesquite (Gilbert)
No. 13 Northwest Christian (Phoenix)
at No. 4 Horizon Honors (Phoenix)
No. 14 Rincon/University (Tucson)
at No. 3 Ironwood (Glendale)
No. 11 Salpointe Catholic (Tucson)
vs. No. 6 Mountain View (Tucson)
No. 10 Centennial (Peoria)
at No. 7 Sahuaro (Tucson)
No. 15 Canyon del Oro (Tucson)
at No. 2 Cienega (Vail)
Jason P. Skoda, a former Arizona Republic sports writer and current Prep Sports Director for Times Media Group, is a 20-year sports writing veteran. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.