Maranatha senior Stephen Van Spronsen anticipated the move.
“I have no doubt in my mind we’ll be No. 2 when the new poll comes,” said Van Spronsen when asked last week about the Minutemen’s chances of moving up in the CIF-Southern Section Division 4A coaches’ rankings after beating Olympic League rival Whittier Christian.
The move became official Monday afternoon.
Not only did Maranatha (20-5, 6-1) move up from No. 4, the Minutemen leapfrogged Paraclete (19-1, 7-1 in Delphic League) for the No. 2 spot.
The coaches must have realized the significance of last week’s victory. Maranatha coach Tim Godley was surprised when informed of the latest poll.
“Wow,” he said, almost speechless for a few seconds. “I think it’s a great reward for the kids and the hard work they’ve put in.”
Maranatha ends the regular season when it hosts Village Christian (14-11, 4-2) at 7:30 tonight. Village Christian and Whittier Christian (18-7, 4-2) each have another game left later this week.
A Maranatha loss tonight coupled with two victories each by Village Christian and Whittier Christian would create a three-way tie for first place. All would share the league title, but coin flips would determine league placement for the playoffs, with the first flip determining the No. 1 seed and the next flip determining second and third.
A loss would all but derail the Minutemen’s chances of earning the No. 2 seed when the final coaches’ poll is released later this week along with the playoff brackets on Sunday.
“Yeah, the kids know the significance of (today’s) game,” Godley said. “They’re fully aware.”