Column: Basketball playoffs are drawing near

Published 11:01 pm Monday, February 13, 2012

It isn’t too hard to tell by watching some of the area basketball teams play that the postseason is near.

Whether it’s Lyle-Pacelli’s Skylar Meyer recklessly diving out of bounds and almost into a wall to save a loose ball, Austin’s Bret Lukes fearlessly taking the ball to the rack against much taller defenders, or Hayfield’s Cole Kruger calmly knocking down four straight free throws to beat a conference contender — the playoffs are coming.

While the postseason tournament is a great gift at the end of the year, this year many area teams are playing for their conference titles as well.

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The conference chase gives a little preview of what is to come.

Right now in boys basketball, the Packers trail Owatonna by just a game, the Athletics lead the SEC West Division, and the Vikings lead the HVL Gold Division.

In girls basketball, Southland leads the Three Rivers Conference and LeRoy-Ostrander leads the SEC West Division.

While playoff wins are more important than conference titles, all of these teams should have some exciting contests coming up as the regular season winds down.