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Follow all the coverage of girls high school basketball throughout the state on their way to Mohegan Sun Arena, the site of this year's championship weekend, March 19-20.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Which Team Is Going To Win The Shoreline Conference?

It’s like guessing how many jellybeans are in the jar. Actually, it’s probably harder.

That is predicting which team will win the Shoreline Conference.

“It’s been crazy all year long,” Morgan coach Joe Grippo said. “There’s no question there are five to eight teams that could win the whole thing. It’s really competitive. If you try and compare scores, you go out of your head.”

For example: Coginchaug beat Morgan, but has lost to Portland. But Morgan defeated Portland. Then Morgan lost to Haddam-Killingworth. But Haddam-Killingworth lost to North Branford, which lost to Morgan. This pattern could go on and on.

But like Grippo said, it’s confusing. The bottom line is there is plenty of parity in the conference, and there is an argument to be made for several teams.

Old Lyme has four starters back from a team that won the Class S state title. Coginchaug is 12-1. Portland has lost three of its last four, but the Highlanders may have the conference’s best player in Kelly Coleman and won their first nine games. East Hampton has some quality victories on its resume.

Meanwhile, Morgan has won its last six games. Haddam-Killingworth, the defending league champion, can’t be counted out either. Nor should Cromwell, which was a preseason favorite. And perhaps North Branford could be included in the mix.

“Who are you going to eliminate?” Coginchaug coach Tony Calcagni asked. “Any team can beat any other team.”

And at the very least, the balance should make for a very interesting conference tournament.

“It’s very wide-open this year,” Old Lyme coach Don Bugbee said. “Quite a few could win the championship. It boils down to who plays well toward the end of season.”

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