Video: Top 25 high school basketball rankings
Big wins for Paul VI, Sierra Canyon and Montverde Academy as City of Palms looms.
An exciting start to the high school basketball season has been filled with plenty of upsets, buzzer-beating finishes and even a seven-overtime thriller.
In a game that lasted approximately four hours, No. 4 Paul VI outlasted Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.) 130-128 with seven extra periods. The marathon game saw 77 fouls committed as seven starters and 10 players in total fouled out.
The Panthers showed a lot of grit in the win, coming back from a 15-point fourth-quarter deficit, overcoming four starters fouling out and emerging victorious after 60 minutes of basketball.
Top-ranked Montverde Academy was dominant in a nationally televised showdown with previous No. 11 DeMatha. The Eagles took it to the Stags left zero doubt in the 76-56 blowout.
Bronny James made headlines over the weekend as well, winning MVP honors against St. Vincent-St. Mary (Akron, Ohio), his father's alma mater, after finishing with a career-high 15 points, including the game-winning basket in a 59-56 win for No. 2 Sierra Canyon in the Ohio Play By Play Classic.
Holiday tournaments take center stage in high school hoops this week as the City of Palms Classic, Chick-fil-A Classic, 'Iolani Classic and Tarkanian Classic combine to feature 18 of the top 25 teams.
The City of Palms is the headliner, as the loaded Sunshine State event features No. 1 Montverde Academy, No. 5 IMG Academy, 7 Sunrise Christian Academy, No. 12 Hamilton Heights Christian Academy, No. 19 O'Dea, No. 20 St. Frances Academy, No. 21 McEachern, No. 23 Archbishop Stepinac and No. 24 Briarcrest Christian.
December is always a defining time for the high school basketball rankings, as holiday tournaments give us plenty of matchups between ranked opponents.
MaxPreps Top 25 national high school basketball rankings
1. (Last week 1) Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.), 6-0
Defeated previous No. 11 DeMatha 76-56 in a game the Eagles dominated from start to finish. Next up: Sanford (Hockessin, Del.) in the first round of the City of Palms Classic on Dec. 19.
2. (2) Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.), 8-0Bronny James
put on a show against his father's alma mater, scoring a career-high 15 points including the game-winning basket with under a minute to go as the Trailblazers defeated St. Vincent-St. Mary (Akron, Ohio) 59-56. They travel to the Tarkanian Classic this week.
The Crew look to bolster their national resume this week with a trip to the Chick-fil-A Classic. An opening-round matchup with Ridge View (Columbia, S.C.) comes before a potential second-round showdown against No. 8 La Lumiere looming.
Outlasted Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.) 130-128 in a seven overtime game that lasted approximately four hours. The reserves were able to come through for the Panthers, as four of five starters fouled out.
Defending national champions have struggled early in the season, barely slipping by Tampa Catholic (Tampa, Fla.) 76-70 in double overtime over the weekend. The Ascenders look to strengthen their national standing this week at the City of Palms Classic.
6. (7) Patrick School (Hillside, N.J.), 0-0
Begin the year Dec. 19 against Hotchkiss School (Lakeville, Ct.).
Notched another quality win over the weekend, taking down iSchool (Lewisville, Texas) 54-41. The Buffaloes take on No. 22 St. Frances Academy Dec. 20 in their first of two games in the City of Palms Classic Signature Series.
8. (9) La Lumiere (LaPorte, Ind.), 6-0
Open Chick-fil-A Classic play on Dec. 20 with a first-round showdown against Legacy Early College (Greenville, S.C.). A win likely sets up a semifinal showdown with No. 3 Prolific Prep.
9. (12) Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas), 4-0
This week will be a defining moment in the Gaels season as they play host to the Tarkanian Classic. They will go up against Skyridge (Lehi, Utah) in their Dec. 18 first-round contest.
10. (13) Roselle Catholic (Roselle, N.J.), 0-0
Begin season Dec. 19 vs. Sinai Christian Academy (Linden, N.J.).
11. (14) Long Island Lutheran (Brookville, N.Y.), 3-0
After three in-state wins to begin the season, the Crusaders go on the road to compete in the 'Iolani Classic and Beach Ball Classic over the next two weeks.
Compete in the City of Palms Classic Signature Series this week where they do battle with West Oaks Academy (Orlando, Fla.) for the second time this season. The Hawks won the first meeting 64-61.
13. (16) Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.), 6-0
After capturing the CDM Beach Bash title, the Monarchs travel to the Tarkanian Classic where an opening-round showdown with Putnam City West (Oklahoma City, Okla.) awaits.
14. (19) Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.), 17-1
Climb five spots after picking up their first win over a ranked opponent this season, defeating No. 18 Dorman 63-52 at the Bojangles Bash. The Warriors open play at the 'Iolani Classic Dec. 18 vs. Mid-Pacific Institute (Honolulu).
Despite suffering their first loss of the season at Newton (Covington, Ga.), the Rams recovered in a big way with an 83-57 victory over defending state champion and previous No. 10 McEachern.
Both of the Stags losses have come against Top 10 opponents, as their most recent defeat came in a road showdown against No. 1 Montverde Academy. Plenty of big games remain for a group looking for their third consecutive Top 10 national finish.
17. (17) Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasant, Utah), 12-0
A trip to the 'Iolani Classic will be telling for this group as they are certain to be tested along the way. The Tigers face Tsinghua (Beijing, China) in the first round.
Despite losing to No. 15 Oak Hill Academy, the Cavaliers were the biggest risers this week after knocking off previous No. 6 Huntington Prep 70-54 at the Bojangles Bash.
A crucial road trip to the City of Palms Classic provides an opportunity for a group that doesn't play any other out-of-state competition this season. The Fighting Irish open against Blanche Ely (Pompano Beach, Fla.).
20. (22) St. Frances Academy (Baltimore), 10-0
Outscored their opponents by 34 points per contest through their first 10 games. The Panthers head to the City of Palms Classic to face No. 7 Sunrise Christian Academy in their first-round contest.
21. (10) McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.), 7-1
Had their 39-game winning streak snapped, losing to No. 15 Grayson 83-57. The Indians look to bounce back with a first-round showdown against Roman Catholic (Philadelphia) on Dec. 19 at the City of Palms Classic.
Could strengthen their national resume, traveling to the Tarkanian Classic to play Centennial (Corona, Calif.) in their first-round contest.
23. (24) Archbishop Stepinac (White Plains, N.Y.), 3-0
This group had a pair of close calls over the weekend, knocking off Cardinal Hayes (Bronx, N.Y.) 72-62 and St. Raymond 100-93 in overtime. They head to the City of Palms Classic for a first-round clash with No. 24 Briarcrest Christian.
Notched a pair of quality wins earlier in the season, defeating Callaway (Jackson, Miss.) 74-64 on Nov. 29 and Male (Louisville, Ky.) 78-70 on Dec. 7. The Saints face No. 23 Archbishop Stepinac in their City of Palms Classic opener.
Opened the year with a pair of lopsided wins, defeating their opponents by 64.5 points per contest. The Crusaders could potentially see their first test of the season Tuesday night against Ingraham (Seattle).
Huntington St. Joseph Prep (Huntington, W. Va.), Bloom (Chicago Heights, Ill.)