Jan 15, 2012

Clackamas women regain No. 1 ranking

NWAACC Women's Basketball
Things always tend to shake up when region play begins, and these last two weeks were no different. The dominant teams from the Southern and Eastern regions now face off against one another, and the weaker teams from the West and North face slightly easier competition than during the tough preseason. The Western and Northern regions include seven of the NWAACC's eight teams with three wins or less, and boast only eight teams with winning records. Here's how the league looks after two weeks of region play: Coaches rankings are in italics under each team's record, and will be updated when the rankings come out on January 18th.
1. Clackamas (14-1, 3-0 South)
 #2 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 2, No. 2 Coaches

Ever since the crushing 72-53 loss to Yakima Valley in a sloppy, 32 turnover contest, Clackamas has reeled off three good wins in a row. The 83-50 victory over SW Oregon saw the return of wing Ashleigh Anderson, which should add further depth to a Clackamas team that already has been as deep as any team in the NWAACC thus far. Even more encouraging was center Jordin Feldman's 14 point performance against Chemeketa, showing that Clackamas is building more of an inside presence to go along with their already stellar 3pt shooters, who lead the league in 3 pointers made and attempted. Clackamas continues to lead in average points (78.43), assists (18.07) and steals (17.07).


2. Columbia Basin (15-1, 3-0 East)
#1 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 1, No. 1 Coaches

The only thing that bumped CBC down to #2 was the fact that one of their three wins was over Treasure Valley, a team that is 2-12 on the year. Yes they got the win, but that game was a cakewalk: only one player had over 25 minutes for Columbia Basin in the 69-52 rout. The Hawks' other two wins were decent, but until they take on one of the heavyweights, they'll have a hard time passing Clackamas until much later in the season when strength of schedule balances itself out. CBCC continues to hide in the middle of the stat books. They have yet to lead the league in any statistical category except one: wins.


3. Big Bend (13-3, 3-0 East)
#6 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 8, No. 7 Coaches

All of the sudden, Big Bend has jumped from one of the mediocre teams to one of the teams to beat. They're one of just two teams in the strong NWAACC East to be undefeated in their region, and have piled up an impressive record. Their biggest win of the season so far was a 65-63 defeat of Yakima Valley on the road, proving that they're definitely for real, despite having a soft preseason. It still remains to be seen whether Big Bend can keep this up, though. The East will be a battle to the finish with four teams boasting 11 wins or more.


4. Walla Walla (11-4, 2-1 East)
#4 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 5, No. 3 Coaches

The Warrior's first three regional games have been a mixed bag of competition. Walla Walla has a nine point loss at home to #1 Columbia Basin, a narrow, 61-60 victory on the road over #6 Blue Mountain, and a 75-28 pummeling of a dismal Treasure Valley team that may go 0-14 in the powerful East. So far, no surprises. Walla Walla is sitting right where they should be: playing decent against the best teams, beating the teams in the middle of the road, and absolutely mopping up against the bottom of the barrel.


5. Yakima Valley (12-4, 2-1 East)
#5 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 4, No. 4 Coaches

Defending NWAACC Champion Yakima Valley was off to a decent start, despite a few hiccups and some consistency issues. That was, until their leading scorer, Brandi Henton, went down with an ACL injury on December 18th at the Clackamas Crossover in Oregon City, Ore. Last week, doctors determined that Henton would be out for the remainder of the season, providing a sizable setback for the Yaks to bypass. Henton will remain a part of the team, and they might need her support after such a loss.


6. Chemeketa (10-4 2-1 South)
#3 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. UR, No. UR Coaches

There are three teams in the NWAACC South tied at 2-1 in region play. Chemeketa is one, and defeated both #3 Lane and unfairly unranked Umpqua. Their only loss so far in the South is to #1 Clackamas, and that was a close game on the road. Of the three losses remaining on Chemeketa's schedule, two of them are to Columbia Basin, and one of the losses was in overtime. The Storm are third in 3pt percentage, blocks, and average points, and are second in assists, led by Janelle Weiss, who is one of only three players to average at least 15 points and 4 assists per game.


7. Lane (12-4, 2-1 South)
#9 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. 3, No. 7 Coaches

Lane has winning streaks of five, four, and three. Their losses aren't too much to feel bad about, as they're to #2 Columbia Basin, #1 Clackamas, and a Bellevue team that went their first eight games without a loss. But that's only three of the four. The last was a 67-57 loss to then unranked Chemeketa at home, a feat that hadn't happened for years until Clackamas broke college basketball's longest home winning streak at 83 last season. Lane continues to score well in the fast-paced South, averaging 73.7 points per game, and leads the league in blocks with 4.25 per contest.


8. Skagit Valley (9-5, 4-0 North)
#10 Coaches
Previous Ranking: No. UR, No. UR Coaches

Especially for a team that started out 1-4, Skagit Valley has come an awfully long way. Since their horrendous start, Skagit Valley has won eight of nine, including a victory over Bellevue and an 82-71 win over Big Bend. With the preseason out of the way, the defending champions from the North should cruise to a second region title unless the rest of the region wakes up all of the sudden. Skagit Valley's most notable statistic is steals, where they are second in the league with nearly sixteen and a half steals per game.


Teams moving up: Clackamas, Big Bend, Walla Walla
Teams added: Chemeketa, Skagit Valley
Teams moving down: Columbia Basin, Yakima Valley, Lane
Teams dropped: Bellevue, Blue Mountain


  1. Love the power rankings. One correction: Walla Walla's loss to Columbia Basin (CBC) was at home in Walla Walla.

  2. love the rankings and summary on each team

  3. What about the Peninsula Women? They have beaten Skagit Valley and not one single person expected them to even be a half game behind Skagit for 1st place in the North Division? Coach Crumb has revived a program that has been dormant for years now

    Go Pirates

  4. Skagit Valley defeated Peninsula 64-55 unless the NWAACC got the wrong box score: http://www.nwaacc.org/basketball/box_score.php?g=1863&sport=wbasketball

  5. Lady Pirates and Skagit have played twice already. first one was in the Pierce Holiday Invite 65 57 where PC came up on top and the second match up was 64 55 @ Peninsula where Skagit won.

  6. Skagit won on the road, and their victory was both during the regular season and much more recent. Have to give Skagit Valley the edge here.