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High school girls basketball: 6A/5A/4A season tips off this week; Lone Peak, Springville, Ridgeline are preseason favorites

SHARE High school girls basketball: 6A/5A/4A season tips off this week; Lone Peak, Springville, Ridgeline are preseason favorites
Lone Peak’s Kailey Woolston, wearing white, drives against Herriman’s Kenlee Enger

Lone Peak’s Kailey Woolston drives against Herriman’s Kenlee Enger during a 6A high school girls basketball semifinal game at the Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City on Thursday, March 3, 2022.

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

The 2022-23 high school girls basketball season gets underway this week, and like last year, the usual suspects of contenders begin the season as the teams to beat in the the Deseret News annual coaches preseason rankings.

Defending 6A champ Lone Peak, defending 5A champ Springville and last year’s 4A runner-up Ridgeline all begin the season as the preseason No. 1 in their respective classifications with a heavy dose of returning talent.

Lone Peak returns four starters, headlined by reigning Deseret News 6A Player of the Year Kailey Woolston, and first team all-state senior guard Makeili Ika is also back for the Knights.

Last year’s 6A runner-up Fremont returns one starter as it heads into the season with a new-look roster that is void of the traditional post talent that’s been a staple for the program the past five years.

In 5A, Springville returns four starters from last year’s run that had a dominant run through the state tournament. Leading the way for the Red Devils are senior guards Ellie Esplin and Brooke Pennington, who were each first team all-staters last year.

Highland begins the season ranked second in 5A with three returning starters, while last year’s runner-up, Lehi, opens the season ranked third with a pair of starters back.

In 4A, defending state champ Desert Hills is starting fresh with zero returning starters and will open the season ranked fifth.

Conversely, last year’s 4A runner-up, Ridgeline returns all five starters led by returning Deseret News 4A Player of the Year Emilee Skinner, who was a freshman last season.

Green Canyon checks in at No. 2 in the preseason rankings, followed by Snow Canyon in third.

Class 6A

Team (2021-22 record)

1. Lone Peak (23-0)

2. Skyridge (15-8)

3. Fremont (24-3)

4. Herriman (20-5)

5. Corner Canyon (9-16)

Others receiving multiple votes: Bingham, Davis, Copper Hills, Syracuse, Westlake, Riverton, Mountain Ridge.

Class 5A

Team (2021-22 record)

1. Springville (22-5)

2. Highland (18-4)

3. Lehi (23-5)

4. Timpview (19-5)

5. Bountiful (20-4)

Others receiving multiple votes: Olympus, Jordan, Skyline, Timpanogos, Viewmont, Cedar Valley.

Class 4A

Team (2021-22 record)

1. Ridgeline (24-2)

2. Green Canyon (14-9)

3. Snow Canyon (16-7)

4. Sky View (16-9)

5. Desert Hills (19-4)

Others receiving multiple votes: Hurricane, Mountain Crest, Cedar, Pine View.