This is the night boys basketball sectionals begin local high school sports tribstar.com bp gas prices chicago

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For Robinson, one of just two Wabash Valley teams remaining in Illinois (Paris began Class 3A regional play on Monday), every remaining game is crucial, starting with tonight’s matchup against Eldorado at the Class 2A West Frankfort Sectional.

It’s the third time in four seasons the Patriots and Bulldogs have opened against each other, and coach Todd Woelfle noted recently, "We played Brownsburg the two years they won the sectional [losing two close games] but last year, when they weren’t as good, we didn’t play them."

South has a four-game winning streak against Avon, including last year’s sectional championship game, but this year’s win was a one-point squeaker. The Braves have also had more than their share of drama in their last few regular-season games.

"We’re real excited," coach Maynard Lewis said. "We’ve got a tough matchup against Avon — they led most of the game when we played them — but it’s going to be fun. The sectional is very competitive, and we’ll have to be ready to go from the start."

"The players have got to realize that every time they step on the floor now, it could be the last time," said coach Joe Boehler of West Vigo, which has the best record among the six teams but has lost twice to Northview. "We’ve gotten better [since a December win over Owen Valley, the Vikings’ opponent tonight] but I’m sure Owen Valley has too.

"It should be exceptionally competitive," agreed coach Clint Weddle of Northview, which plays the West Vigo-Owen Valley winner on Friday, "and any one of the teams will be a tremendous representative [in the regional the following week]. … We plan to keep doing what we’ve been doing." The Knights also beat Sullivan twice and split with Edgewood.

• The Class 2A Eastern Greene Sectional has four teams with winning records, all of which are in action tonight. Its highlight game — indeed, one of the state’s highlight games — is the 6 p.m. opener between Barr-Reeve and Linton, who have a combined 41-6 record and who have been top-10 teams all season.

"If we’re going to play [Barr-Reeve], we might as well play them first," said coach Joey Hart of the Miners, who lost a seven-point game to the Vikings in December. "You don’t want to win a tough game and then have 12 hours to prepare [for Barr-Reeve]. It won’t be easy, but it isn’t supposed to be."

• Just like the Eastern Greene Sectional, the Class 2A South Putnam Sectional has four teams with winning records and all will be playing in tonight’s first round. Each of those four has also lost to at least one of the other three, and Cloverdale — with an 18-6 record and winners of 13 of its last 14 — opens against a Southmont team that beat the Clovers earlier.

• At the Class 2A Fountain Central Sectional, just two teams have winning records, and both of them are in the bracket with South Vermillion. It’s not the best draw coach Phil Leonard’s team could have gotten, but the Wildcats go into their game tonight having won six of their last seven — although the one loss was against the Covington team they open with.

• The Class A North Vermillion Sectional has five teams who should be expecting to win. The three Parke County schools all enter postseason play with records of .500 or better, which hasn’t happened in a very long time; Attica has the best record against the other teams in the sectional despite a losing record; and the host Falcons have the worst record but have won three of four and have their home court to play on.