Prep basketball action moves into high gear this weekend, as nearly all of the state's 13 regions either resume league play or tip-off region competition.
And back after a holiday hiatus is this week's Deseret News Coaches Poll.North Sevier and Piute continue as the top-ranked teams in the 2A and 1A polls, while Cottonwood makes its way back to the No. 1 spot in the 4A rankings after formerly top-ranked and undefeated Davis suffered successive losses.
And in the 3A poll, Ogden and Spanish Fork swap places at Nos. 1 and 2 after the former beat the later in a pre-Christmas contest.
Friday's full slate of prep basketball competition includes league-openers in Regions 2, 4, 7 and 8. Meanwhile, Regions 1, 3, 6, 9, 10, 11 and 12 resume league play after playing at least one - and sometimes several - region games before the holiday break.
Region 5 got an early return to the hardwood with its league-openers being played Wednesday night. And Region 13 is still several weeks away from beginning divisional play.
Friday's top games include a couple of contests with ranked opponents. In a 2A contest, No. 5 Morgan travels to No. 2 South Summit as both teams sport five-game winning streaks. Morgan leads Region 9 with a 3-0 record, while South Summit is 2-0 after having a December league game canceled because of poor weather.
And No. 2 Green River squares off against No. 3 Tabiona for the season time this season. The Pirates claimed the first triumph, but the Tigers had a 12-point lead with less than four minutes to play before foul trouble opened the way for Green River's rally.
Other top games of note from Friday's schedule:
- The top Region 1 battle has Weber at No. 4 Bonneville, with the Lakers coming off an overtime loss to West Jordan and the Warriors having won four of their last five games.
- No. 1 Cottonwood opens its Region 2 schedule at Brighton, where the Bengals finished last year's league season by beating the Colts and earning the region's top seed to the 4A tournament.
- Two-time state and region titlist Bingham travels to No. 3 Hillcrest, where the diminutive Huskies appear to the early favorites to take over the league throne from the Miners.
- Mountain Crest hosts No. 4 Sky View, with the Mustangs already afforded a chance to avenge a preseason loss to the Bobcats.
- No. 5 Jordan visits Murray, with both teams atop the Region 6 standings with 2-0 league marks.
- And Richfield plays at top-ranked North Sevier, with both teams 3-0 in Region 10 play. Remember, it was North Sevier who upset favored Richfield in last year's 2A semifinals, as the Wolves went on to win the 2A crown.