The playoff picture is set for boys and girls basketball. While some northwest schools failed to qualify this year, others will look to continue their run in the state tournament, which begins Feb. 19 for girls and Feb. 20 for boys.
Canyon Del Oro
After suffering a 59-53 loss to Salpointe Catholic High School last week, the #20 Canyon Del Oro Dorados (18-9) will look to rebound with a first round playoff win over #13 Cholla Magnet High School (22-7). The Cholla Chargers also lost their final game of the season to Salpointe by a score of 47-45. The will be the first meeting between the Chargers and Dorados this season. The game will be held at Cholla on Feb. 20. The advancing team will move on to face automatic qualifier Cienega High School on Feb. 22.
The #19 Ironwood Ridge Nighthawks (15-12) will take on #14 Buena High School (20-7) on Feb. 20, with the winner advancing to compete against #4 Flagstaff High School. This will be the second meeting between the two teams this season. In the first, the Nighthawks managed a 61-53 home court win. The Nighthawks will now have to manage the same feat on Buena’s home turf if they are to advance.
Marana, Mountain View, and Pusch Ridge Christian Academy failed to qualify for the state tournament this year.
Canyon Del Oro
Like the boys’ team, the lady Dorados (23-7) will enter the tournament a #20 seed. The Dorados will square off against #13 Kingman High School (22-4) on Kingman’s home court on Feb. 19 at 7 p.m. If the Dorados manage the upset, they will take on automatic qualifier #4 Thunderbird High School on Feb. 21. The Dorados are coming off a narrow loss to automatic section qualifier Flowing Wells High School, but also picked up a big win(42-30) the game prior over rival Ironwood Ridge High School.
Pusch Ridge Christian Academy
The#3 Pusch Ridge Lions (23-5) have won seven straight leading into the first round of the playoffs, the most recent a dominating 37-16 victory over San Carlos High School. The Lions have earned an automatic bid in the tournament, and will await the results of the matchup between #19 Palo Verde Magnet and #14 Monument Valley. The Lions play the winner of that contest at Amphitheater High School on Feb. 22 at 5 p.m.
The #21 Nighthawks (19-8) will look for an away win over #12 Buckeye (24-4) on Feb. 19 in the first round of the playoffs. If the Nighthawks advance, they will then take on #5 Coconino, an automatic bid, on Feb. 21. The Nighthawks have won four of their last six heading into the tournament.
Marana and Mountain View failed to qualify for the tournament this year.