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Top team completes undefeated regular season

2/17/2009

Editor's note: The ESPN RISE FAB 50 boys' basketball rankings are compiled by Christopher Lawlor, Ronnie Flores, Ryan Canner-O'Mealy and Doug Huff. They will be released each Tuesday throughout the season.

Click here for regional rankings.

It was relatively quiet week in the ESPN RISE FAB 50 boys' basketball rankings. No. 1 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) completed a perfect regular season and No. 2 Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) knocked off previous-No. 3 St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.), 73-64, in a showdown of heavyweights.

Three teams join the rankings, making the biggest splash is No. 32 Bearden (Knoxville, Tenn.), Tennessee's top-ranked Class AAA team. The Bulldogs are experienced team, with a veteran coach, Mark Blevins, at the helm. He's about a year away from his 700th win. Top 'Dogs include Demonte Simpson, Nathan Parker, Dustin Craig (headed to the Air Force Academy), Dion Fair, Benji Ware and Jaeland Lawson.

This week's team in the spotlight is No. 14 DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) who plays conference foes No. 13 Gonzaga Friday and regionally-ranked Bishop O'Connell (Arlington, Va.) on Tuesday. The O'Connell game pits coaches and former high school teammates at DeMatha, Joe Wootten (O'Connell) and Mike Jones (DeMatha), in a battle on ESPNU (9 p.m. ET). If DeMatha, a winner of seven straight, sweeps the games, it would win the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference title and bag the top seed for the conference tournament. All three teams are still alive for the WCAC regular season title.

Recent teams in the spotlight, No. 4 St. Patrick went 1-1 and No. 8 St. Benedict's (Newark, N.J.) lost twice.

The Southwest and West regions were steady; no teams were dropped.

Three-point play

Game Ball: Wally Judge of Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville, Fla.) was instrumental in two postseason games, earning him player of the week honors. The 6-foot-10 Judge, No. 17 in the ESPNU 100, totaled 38 points, 32 rebounds and blocked eight shots as the Apaches won the District 6-2A championship for the fifth consecutive year. Judge, who signed with Kansas State, had 12 points, 19 boards and four blocks as ACD beat Providence School (Jacksonville), 62-58, for the first time in three tries this year. The two teams are expected to meet Feb. 24 in the Region 2 semifinals. Judge will play in both the McDonald's All-American Game and Jordan Brand Classic in April.

Game of the week: The midwest is the place to be Saturday night when No. 15 Detroit Country Day (Beverly Hills, Mich.) travels to No. 19 Bloomington (Ind.) South. Both teams are firing on all cylinders as the regular season winds down. The South Panthers feature four players who score in double figures, Jordan Hulls (15.6 points per game), Dee Davis (13.6), Spencer Turner (12.1) and Erik Fromm (10.5). Hull, the No. 31-rated point guard according to ESPNU, is headed to hometown Indiana University. DCD (17-0), an overwhelming favorite to win Michigan's Class B title next month, features 6-foot-11 DaShonte Riley, 6-8 Donnovan Kirk (signed with Miami) and 6-5 Jordan Dumars (South Florida), Bennie Sowler (Michigan State for football) and 6-1 junior Ray McCallum.

700 Club: Charles Smith of Peabody (Alexandria, La.) goes for his 700th coaching win Tuesday against Leesville at the Emerald Palace. Smith, 699-144, is an accomplished coach having captured four state championships (most recently in 2007) and 22 district titles (16 straight) since 1985-86. The Warhorses, who will return four starters in 2010, are back in the Class 4A mix this year with a 23-2 record. Smith's top youngsters include 6-5 junior Markel Brown (25 ppg) and 6-7 freshman Troy Jones (10 ppg, 10 rpg).

Records are through Feb. 15.

Dropped out: No. 35 Wheeler (Marietta, Ga,); No. 47 Providence School (Jacksonville, Fla.); and No. 50 McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.).