The No. 1 teams in the state keep proving they belong at the top each week in the high school basketball scene.
And last week was no different.
No changes were made to the No. 1 teams in this week's 406mtsports.com high school boys and girls basketball rankings. For the boys, Missoula Sentinel (AA), Hamilton (A), Bigfork (B) and Arlee (C) all held firm by sweeping their respective opponents last week.
In AA, Billings Senior and Missoula Hellgate swapped spots as the Broncs moved up to No. 4 and the Knights dropped to No. 5. The Knights lost a close one with Sentinel on Friday.
Class A saw Billings Central fall two spots to No. 5 after a one-point loss to Sidney. Butte Central and Livingston each moved up a spot to Nos. 4 and 5 respectively after earning a pair of big wins last week. Rocky Boy jumped up two spots to No. 3 in Class B while Three Forks fell down one notch after a loss to Class A Belgrade. Roundup (No. 5) moved up one spot while Florence fell two spots to No. 6 after losing to Bigfork. Big Timber (No. 7) and Fairfield (No. 8) also moved up one spot while Shelby and Whitehall both make season debuts to the rankings, coming in at Nos. 9 and 10 respectively. Missoula Loyola and Anaconda both drop out of the Class B rankings this week.
The top three in Class C stay the same while Manhattan Christian moved up one spot to No. 4 despite a loss to Class B Three Forks. Heart Butte also moved up two spots to No. 5. Sunburst moved up two places to No. 6 while Gardiner (No. 7) fell three spots after a 67-44 loss to Manhattan Christian, its first loss of the season. Chinook and Park City crack the rankings for the first time this year and round out the top ten. North Star and Terry both drop out of this week's list.
Harlem made the biggest jump in this week’s girls basketball rankings, moving up to No. 4 in Class B.
The other classifications remained fairly static, however, and Helena (AA), Columbia Falls (A), Three Forks (B) and Belt (C) all won out last week to hold on to their top spots.
The only movement in Class A was Hardin and Browning switching spots, with the Bulldogs moving up to fourth after Browning suffered a home loss to No. 3 Havre. Havre will have an eye toward moving up next week, pending the results of Saturday’s matchup featuring Columbia Falls and No. 2 Hamilton.
Class B saw Columbus (No. 9) and Wolf Point (No. 10) join the rankings, while Arlee (No. 10) made its first appearance in Class C.
Harlem defeated then No. 2-Poplar 55-53 on Autumn Eagleman’s 3-pointer with four seconds left. That allowed the Wildcats to jump three spots into fourth. Also in Class B last week, Bigfork beat Florence 67-59 in overtime to move the Valkries up from fifth to third and drop the Falcons from fourth to sixth.
Two games to watch in Class AA this week: No. 4 Senior takes on No. 5 West on Thursday and No. 1 Helena plays No. 3 Helena Capital Friday.