Players to watch: Fr. G Julia Colby, Oxford Hills; Soph. C Jadah Adams, Oxford Hills; Sr. G Erin Morton, Oxford Hills; Sr. C Jordyn Reynolds, Edward Little; Soph. F Jade Perry, Edward Little; Sr. F Morgan Eliasen, Lewiston; Jr. C Victoria Harris, Lewiston; Sr. G Skylar Gaudette, Lewiston.
Favorite: Oxford Hills.
The Vikings tore through their schedule, and are far and away the top seed. They have several shooters, but can also drive the lane and score in the paint. And they’re stout defensively. They played well when Jadah Adams was sidelined by injury for most of January, but they did suffer the only loss at Bangor during that stretch.
Darkhorses: Edward Little, Deering.
The Red Eddies’ defense will present problems for any team they play. Their offense, though, makes them vulnerable. But that defense makes them capable of beating any team, especially if they can score in bunches here and there.
The Rams played a tough schedule, and leaders Katasia Titherington, Amanda Brett and Abby Ramirez have some tournament experience. Deering fared well against AA North, beating EL and falling to Oxford Hills by only three points on a buzzer-beater.
Overview: Edward Little and Deering might challenge Oxford Hills. After seven quarters of struggling against the Vikings in the teams’ two meetings this season, the Red Eddies may have gained some confidence from their big fourth quarter in a loss Feb. 8, when they whittled down an 18-point deficit to five points.
Lewiston has some young, talented players who will benefit from just playing in the tournament, but also some experienced players who helped the Blue Devils upset Bangor last year in the quarterfinals. Lewiston will have to take down Deering in the quarterfinals to return to the semis, where they will earn another shot at rival Edward Little.
Prediction: Oxford Hills.