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November 30, 2012

GREG'S PICKS: Big early tests for several local teams

(Continued)

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — BOYS — Lanesville (1-1, 0-0 SAC) at Borden (2-0, 0-0), Friday

There’s nothing that indicates that there is another team in the Southern Athletic Conference capable of competing with the Eagles and Braves.

Therefore, just about 10 days into the season, this is — for all intents and purposes — for the SAC championship game unless the winner of this game shockingly stumbles later in the season.

Borden showed great poise and toughness in a win at Eastern. This could be a similar test, but one I completely expect them to pass.

THE PICK: Borden 72, Lanesville 64.

BOYS — Austin (1-0) at Providence (1-0), Friday

Austin is deep, talented and balanced. The Eagles opened the season with a nice 70-60 win over rival Scottsburg.

Providence coach Lou Lefevre can complain about his team all he wants, but he has a talented bunch, as well. The Pioneers will be tested  — and soon — just probably not too much at home on Friday.

THE PICK: Providence 55, Austin 44.

GIRLS — Madison (5-0, 1-0 HHC) at Jeffersonville (2-2, 0-2), Friday

It’s been a rough stretch for Matt Pait’s Red Devils with tough back-to-back conference losses following a 2-0 start.

A win on Friday could be one of those that is a turning point for a program. If Jeff can defend its home court and knock off an unbeaten team, it might just give the athletic Devils some momentum and some confidence against a brutal upcoming schedule.

It will take a big effort, though.

THE PICK: Madison 63, Jeff 58.

BOYS — Jeffersonville (0-0) at Evansville Bosse (0-0), Saturday

Honestly, I have no idea what JaQuan Lyle has returning around him, but the junior is one of the top 20 players in his class in the nation. When a kid is choosing between the likes of Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio State, he can seriously play.

Jeff will be undersize, but highly athletic and skilled. If the Red Devils can find a way to rebound and defend opposing bigs, it could be a another great season in Jeff.

This is a tough way to open the season — on the road against one of the top players in America, the second-ranked team in Class 3A and a defending semi-state finalist. A win would be monumental, but a loss shouldn’t keep the Devils from another big year.

THE PICK: Bosse 72, Jeff 67.

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