Section true-team championships will be determined Saturday in boys swimming and diving.
For programs, it’s an opportunity to test overall depth.
The area is host to two sectional meets.
In Section 8-2A, St. Cloud Tech has a bunch of big schools coming to its pool at 10 a.m. Saturday. Big Lake, Brainerd, Buffalo, Elk River, Moorhead, Rogers, St. Michael-Albertville and Zimmerman compete. Tech’s off to a 2-0 start in dual meets and has a good team.
In Section 3A, Sauk Rapids is host to a number of area schools at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. St. Cloud Apollo, Dassel-Cokato, Hutchinson, Montevideo, Monticello, Rocori and Willmar compete.
Sartell’s the favorite. The Sabres are ranked fifth in the state in Class A.
Sauk Centre/Melrose, another strong area program, competes in Section 5A, where the true-team sectional is in Detroit Lakes.
All involved are attempting to qualify for the state true-team championships Jan. 24 at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis.
A quick look at the rest of the week:
•St. Cloud Tech at Sauk Rapids boys basketball, 7:30 p.m.
No two teams in the Central Lakes Conference have more young, talented athletes than these two. The Storm (3-3 Central Lakes, 6-7 overall), if they haven’t turned the corner, are about to after not winning a game last season. Tech (5-2, 5-7) went into the weekend leading the conference, but also having lost four straight.
•Albany at Sartell boys basketball, 7:30 p.m.
Another good metro game. These two are Section 8-4A contenders, with both seeking at least top-four seeds.
•Rocori at Tech wrestling, 6 p.m.
Both teams have their best squads in recent years and this should be competitive. Both are capable of top-three finishes in the conference.
•Apollo vs. Sauk Rapids boys hockey, 7:15 p.m. at Sports Arena East.
Apollo (8-2-2) is one of the top contenders in Section 6A and Sauk Rapids (6-7-1) has proven to be scrappy enough to play with anyone. The Storm also want to show they are better than the 5-0 defeat they suffered to the Eagles at the Granite City Showcase.
•Sauk Rapids at Tech girls basketball, 7:30 p.m.
Sauk Rapids (2-1, 3-5) is seeing its girls program turn a corner, too. Tech (3-2, 4-8) is a close match.
This is the opinion of Times prep sports coordinator Tom Elliott. Contact him at 259-3661 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook or on Twitter @sctimestom.