(Last week's rankings in parentheses; NR -- not ranked)
1. Andrean (1) 3-0
The 'Niners are scoring points like Bowman's boys basketball team, without a 3-point line. Tonight's trip to Munster will be tougher than many expect. This one is always a white-knuckler.
2. Merrillville (2) 2-1
After eking out a win at Crown Point last Friday, the Bucs host Portage this evening. This one could be, will be, very tough. The Indians are climbing the mountain and a win here is huge.
3. Morton (4) 3-0
You think the Govs have a little payback in mind? Hammond beat Morton last year and the Hessville Hammers surely remember. The big item here is can the Wildcats hang and bang?
4. Crown Point (3) 2-1
The Bulldogs travel to Lake Central and this one could come down to a field goal. L.C. won the regular-season tilt last year. C.P. came back in sectionals. The old rivalry is becoming hot again.
5. Hobart (5) 3-0
The Brickies' offense has been unstoppable, especially last week at The Boneyard. A tougher, more physical Kankakee Valley comes to town tonight. The Kougars surely remember last year's sectional.
6. Chesterton (6) 2-1
The Trojans were dead in the water, down 17 in the fourth quarter at Michigan City, then they rattled off 21 points and stole a stunning 35-31 win. All those cliches about it being a 48-minute game, not giving up and playing to the end? Sometimes, they actually work.
7. Lake Central (7) 2-1
In an age of Arena League points being scored, the Indians' defense has been stout. Only eight points allowed in the last two weeks. They will be tested with the Bulldogs' aerial assault busing over.
8. Rensselaer (8) 3-0
Remember a few years ago when people asked if the Bombers could hang with Lowell and Kirk Kennedy? The 56-7 whooping of North Judson might say something. Powerful Tipton comes to town tonight.
9. Whiting (9) 3-0
Oiler Nation must be cooking up something special at the Region's best Tailgate. This team is rolling so far. Scoring points and putting a brick wall on the goal line. South Central smoke-stacking it tonight.
10. Michigan City (NR) 2-1
City's offense is scary. For the better part of three quarters, it had Chesterton staggering, but the Wolves couldn't apply the knockout punch. That happens when you're not used to winning. It's not a reach to say tonight's response at Valpo may define their season.
On the bubble: Boone Grove (3-0), Griffith (1-2), Munster 2-1, E.C. Central (2-1), Highland (2-1), Kankakee Valley (1-2), Lowell (1-2), Portage (1-2), West Side (0-3).