Girls basketball: Five area 4A schools rank as regional favorites

Lincoln-Way West's Tara Gugliuzza drives against Lincoln-Way Central's Corryn Mejdrich during a game early this season. The Warriors are the No. 4 seed in the Class 4A McAuley Sectional and the top seed in the Thornton Fractional North Regional. The Knights are the 11th seed in the sectional and will face Homewood-Flossmoor on Tuesday to open their bid in the Sandburg Regional.[]

The postseason for Class 4A and 3A girls basketball teams in the Joliet area will begin Monday with regional feed-in games.

Area teams are involved in each of the four regionals that feed the 4A Neuqua Valley Sectional, and if the seeds hold, No. 1 Bolingbrook and No. 4 Minooka would meet in one sectional semifinal next week, while No. 3 Plainfield East would take on No. 2 Naperville Central in the other semifinal.

Bolingbrook is hosting its regional and is likely to reach Thursday’s championship game against the winner of the 8-9 battle between Joliet West and Plainfield North. Minooka is in the Plainfield South Regional and would meet the No. 16 Cougars or No. 20 Romeoville in Tuesday’s semifinal before taking on No. 5 Yorkville or the winner of the game between No. 12 Plainfield Central and No. 21 Oswego for the regional title.

If No. 13 Lockport beats No. 19 Metea Valley on Monday, the Porters would meet Plainfield East on Tuesday, with No. 6 West Aurora a potential regional final opponent for the Bengals.

Joliet Central, seeded 14th, tips Monday against No. 18 Neuqua Valley with the winner advancing to face host Naperville Central. The other semifinal pits No. 7 Naperville North against No. 10 Lemont.

The Neuqua Valley Sectional survivor will face the Proviso West Sectional winner – with No. 1 Montini and No. 2 Benet looming among the more likely candidates – in the super-sectional at Lewis University.

Meanwhile, another 4A sectional of local interest is at McAuley, where No. 1 Lincoln-Way East is hosting its own regional and No. 4 Lincoln-Way West is the top seed at Thornton Fractional North.

Lincoln-Way Central, seeded 11th, will open at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday against No. 6 Homewood-Flossmoor in the Sandburg Regional.

The McAuley Sectional winner will take on the Champaign Centennial Sectional winner in the super-sectional at Illinois Wesleyan University.

In Class 3A, the Coal City Super-Sectional will pit winners from the Dunlap Sectional and the Rich East Sectional.

Joliet Catholic Academy begins play in the Bishop McNamara Regional, which is part of Sub-Sectional B in the Rich East Sectional, at 7 p.m. Monday against No. 10 Manteno. The Angels are the eighth seed. McNamara is the 1 seed and would be JCA’s opponent at 6 p.m. Tuesday, with the battle between No. 4 Providence Catholic and No. 5 Rich East following.

The Herscher Regional, which is in Sub-Sectional A in the Dunlap Sectional, will include No. 8 Coal City and No. 5 Morris. The Coalers take on No. 6 Pontiac at 6 p.m. Monday, while the Redskins face No. 9 Prairie Central at 7:30. Coal City would see No. 1 Morton in the semifinals, while Morris would advance to meet No. 4 Herscher.