Engineers capture first No. 1 ranking; season concludes with no state Final Four


Poly reigned again in Baltimore City with a third straight title. For the first time, the Engineers are No. 1 in the final VSN Girls Basketball Top 20.

by Derek Toney

Since March 12 when the state public basketball tournament was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there was hope that the final event of the 2019-20 winter season would be played, albeit in the spring.

But as targeted dates (March 27 and April 27) to reopen state public schools passed, in addition to other restrictions, the likelihood of the state Final Four taking place became slim.

Tuesday, the MPSSAA, in conjunction with the state Department of Education, announced the cancellation of the state basketball tournament and the remainder of the spring athletic season.

The 2019-20 girls basketball season is officially over. Six area squads – Coppin Academy, Forest Park, Howard, Pikesville, Poly and Western – won’t get the chance to play at Towson University’s SECU Arena.

With the season closed, VSN presents our final Girls Basketball Top 20 poll.

Poly, which was seeking its first state title, finishes No. 1 for the first time. The Engineers won their third consecutive Baltimore City title, and their only loss came against then-nationally ranked Riverdale Baptist School, in early December.
 
Howard, the area’s lone undefeated school, is No. 2. The Lions, who reached the Class 4A state semifinals, won another Howard County crown. 
 
St. Frances Academy, the No. 1 team in the final VSN Top 20 the previous four seasons, finished No. 3. The nationally-ranked Panthers won their fifth consecutive IAAM A Conference title.
 
St. Vincent Pallotti and McDonogh School complete the Top 5. 
 
Here is the final VSN Girls’ Basketball Top 20 of the 2019-20 season:

VSN GIRLS BASKETBALL TOP 20 – FINAL POLL

1. POLY (24-1)

Previous rank: #1

Season review: The Engineers reached their third straight Class 3A state semifinal. The Cold Spring Lane school won the Baltimore City title for the third straight season.

2. HOWARD (25-0)

Previous rank: #2

Season review: The Lions reached the 4A state semifinals for the first time since 2011. The Ellicott City school won the Howard County for the sixth time in seven seasons.

3.  ST. FRANCES ACADEMY (25-3)

Previous rank: #3

Season review: The Panthers won their fifth consecutive IAAM A Conference championship. The East Baltimore school finished No. 15 nationally by MaxPreps.

4. ST. VINCENT PALLOTTI (21-6)

Previous rank: #4

Season review: The Panthers reached their first IAAM A Conference final, falling to St. Frances. The Laurel school defeated five teams in the final VSN Top 20, and then-nationally ranked Riverdale Baptist School.

5. MCDONOGH SCHOOL (19-7)

Previous rank: #5

Season review: The Eagles reached the IAAM A Conference semifinals, losing to Pallotti. The Owings Mills school defeated IAAM A champ St. Frances, IAAM B champ St. Paul’s School and Baltimore County champ Pikesville. 

6. ROLAND PARK COUNTRY SCHOOL (15-11)

Previous rank: #6

Season review: The Reds reached the IAAM A Conference semifinals, losing to eventual champ St. Frances. The Baltimore City school defeated five teams in the final VSN Top 20.

7. WESTERN (19-4)

Previous rank: #7

Season review: The Doves reached the Class 4A state semifinals for the second straight season. The Baltimore City school only lost to Poly (twice) locally.

8. ST. JOHN’S CATHOLIC PREP (15-8)

Previous rank: #8

Season review: The Vikings lost in the IAAM A Conference quarterfinals. The Frederick school won the Gael Classic (at St. Maria Goretti) and Bullis Holiday Classic.

 

9. ST. PAUL’S SCHOOL (23-3)

Previous rank: #9

Season review: The Gators won their second straight IAAM B Conference championship. The Brooklandville school won its final 14 decisions.

10. OLD MILL (22-2)

Previous rank: #10

Season review: The Patriots lost to Howard in the Class 4A East Region I final. The Millersville school won its sixth straight Anne Arundel County championship.

11. RIVER HILL (20-5)

Previous rank: #11

Season review: The Hawks lost to Poly in the Class 3A state quarterfinals. The Clarksville school finished second to Howard in the Howard County league.

12.  SEVERNA PARK (18-6)

Previous rank: #12

Season review: The Falcons lost to Prince George’s County’s Charles H. Flowers in the Class 4A state quarterfinals.  The Anne Arundel County school lost to Anne Arundel champ Old Mill and Howard County champ Howard.

13. PIKESVILLE (22-4)

Previous rank: #13

Season review: The Panthers reached the state semifinals for the third consecutive season. The Labyrinth Road school won its second straight Baltimore County championship. 

 

14. SOUTH RIVER (18-7)

Previous rank: #14

Last week: The Seahawks lost to Severna Park in the Class 4A East Region II final. The Edgewater school reached the Anne Arundel County final.

 

15. MEADE (19-5)

Previous rank: #15

Season review: The Mustangs forfeited to Old Mill in the Class 4A East Region I semifinals. The Anne Arundel County school lost three games by a total of 12 points.

16. ARUNDEL (17-7)

Previous rank: #16

Season review: The Wildcats lost to Howard in the Class 4A East Region I semifinals. The Gambrills school went 12-4 in Anne Arundel County play.

17. FOREST PARK (21-3)

Previous rank: #17

Season review: The Foresters reached the Class 2A state semifinals. The Baltimore City school lost to state semifinalists Poly (3A) and Western (4A). 

18. MOUNT CARMEL (14-14)

Previous rank: #18

Season review: The Cougars lost to St. Paul’s in the IAAM B Conference final. The Baltimore County school won eight of its last nine decisions.

 

 

19. MARYVALE PREP (14-8)

Previous rank: #19

Season review: The Lions lost to eventual champ St. Paul’s in the IAAM B Conference semifinals. The Brooklandvillle school lost twice to St. Paul’s, and lost to Anne Arundel County champ Old Mill.

20. COPPIN ACADEMY (18-5)

Previous rank: #20

Season review: The Eagles reached the Class 1A state semifinals for the third consecutive season. The Baltimore City school defeated Baltimore County finalist Western Tech and IAAM B runner-up Mount Carmel.