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Busy week in sports deserves attention

For goodness sakes, put the Doritos and Ding Dongs down!

There's no excuse for remaining wedged in the love seat or prone on the couch. No matter what sport you prefer -- literally -- you're taken care of in the next few days.

Let's start with an entertaining double dip Saturday in Morgantown. West Virginia, close to locking a spot in the Big East men's basketball tournament in New York City, hosts No. 10 Syracuse. Tip-off at the Coliseum is 2 p.m.

At that exact moment a couple dozen yards away, the finals for the state high school swim meet will begin. Area waterbugs aren't lacking for incentive to visit the WVU Natatorium

Bridgeport's girls team merely is seeking its fifth consecutive state crown. Robert C. Byrd's Chris Hagedorn not only dominates state sprinters, he's among the nation's best.

Switching back to men's basketball, Salem International is staring at a huge week. The unthinkable -- a late season home loss to WVU-Tech -- knocked the Tigers from their WVC perch.

There are a number of scenarios that could return third-place SIU (19-3) to its familiar top spot, but it begins with a road trip to No. 5 West Liberty (12-9), who happened to hand the Tigers their only other home loss this season. It's then back home Saturday to face 10th-place Wheeling Jesuit (9-12).

SIU's women face the same schedule, but only the names are the same. West Liberty leads the league at 17-4 and loses at home about as often as Oprah reads Maxim. Wheeling Jesuit is rated No. 3 at 11-10. The Tigers have surged to a surprising fifth in the league, and this week provides the proverbial measuring stick.

In high school hoops it's all about the girls, Class AA girls in particular. The marquee game pits No. 1 Bridgeport (20-0) against No. 2 Ritchie County (18-2) Wednesday at Bridgeport.

Grafton heads a number of teams that would dispute this, but Bridgeport and Ritchie are racing toward a possible Region 2 championship showdown. This game deserves a packed crowd.

Area wrestlers continue their state tournament quests this weekend at their respective regional meets. Granted, travel is involved with this one; the Class AA-A meet is at Berkeley Springs, and Keyser hosts the Class AAA meet.

Lest ye think all bases aren't covered, how about some youth basketball? The Big 10 freshman tournament is being held at the higher seeds' sites. Semifinals are Thursday, and the championship will tip off at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Finally, you've got the Harrison County boys and girls middle school championships. Semifinals are Thursday at Bridgeport Middle, and Liberty hosts the championships Saturday.

I don't care what Joey and Rachel are doing on Must See TV. The whackos on Survivor could eat their weight in rats if they want. Believe me, you've got better things to do.

Sports editor Anthony Hanshew can be reached at 626-1444 or by e-mail at ahanshew@exponent-telegram.com.

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