North Mecklenburg won its second Arby’s Classic championship in two years last week and remains No. 1 in the Observer’s Sweet 16 boys basketball poll.
The Vikings (13-1) have won six straight games since an 85-79 loss to national power Huntington (W. Va) Prep.
Independence, which won the Phenom Hoops’ Palmetto Winter Classic tournament title, moves up two spots to No. 2. The Patriots are 12-1 under coach Preston Davis and have won three straight games since losing 61-55 in the finals of the Queen City Clash to N.C. 2A private school power Carmel Christian.
Also moving up is China Grove Carson, one of three unbeaten N.C. 3A public school teams. Carson (12-0) is up three spots, to No. 6, after beating previously unbeaten Salisbury 67-65 in the finals of the Sam Moir Classic Saturday.
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One new team is in the poll this week: No. 16 Olympic -- led by 6-3 sophomore guard Josh Banks and 6-3 junior Jalen Barr -- has won seven of its past eight games. The Trojans are 8-3 under coach Baronton Terry, who won a state championship and rebuilt a power at West Charlotte.
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North Mecklenburg (4A)
Providence Day (IND)
Concord Cox Mill (3A)
China Grove Carson (3A)
Marshville Forest Hills (2A)
Rocky River (4A)
Charlotte Catholic (3A)
Morganton Freedom (3A)
Ardrey Kell (4A)
Charlotte Christian (IND)
Lincoln Charter (1A)
Dropped out: Concord Cannon (IND, 10-8). Also receiving consideration: Lake Norman (4A, 10-3); Myers Park (4A, 9-4); Watauga (3A, 7-2); North Gaston (3A, 9-3); Lincolnton (2A, 9-2); Belmont South Point (2A, 11-3); Community School of Davidson (1A, 9-1); Cherryville (1A, 10-3)
Note: Eligible teams in the Observer’s coverage do not allow athletes to reclassify after ninth grade and must be a member of the N.C. High School Athletic Association of the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association.