No. 11 Klein Forest Golden Eagles
It was a magical and historic run to the UIL state finals a year ago for the Golden Eagles and coach Cary Black. Klein Forest fell to Duncanville in a tight game, but the season had so many great memories which included a 16-0 district mark and a 33-4 overall record. Calvin Solomon and Kharee McDaniel led the squad, picking up accolades and college scholarships along the way. Both are now teammates at Stephen F. Austin. But it's back to the drawing board for coach Black, who will plug-and-play new names in to run his up-tempo style of play. The Golden Eagles hope to have their opponents seeing double as twins Dylan and Daylan Hamilton will be a pair of featured scorers. Junior Marion Williams will take over the point guard spot as a returner with some varsity experience. Last year, Klein Forest was loaded with seniors. The show must go on as coach Black will be ready to defend the north.
No. 12 Fort Bend Travis Tigers
After a third-place finish in the tough District 20-6A, Fort Bend Travis is one of the favorites to win the conference and make a run in the Region III postseason. Why? Coach Craig Brownson has "been-there and done-that." He has led the Tigers to a pair of state tourneys and won it all in 2013 with Andrew and Aaron Harrison. He has the coaching chops, but he also has an experienced guard-oriented team coming back this year. Justin Hill is a tremendous team leader running the point and is a DI player. Hill can score, distribute and defend. Cameron Oliver brings a football-mentality to the team as the Tigers' starting defensive back on the football field. Zul Sakhiyani and Mekhi McIntyre are also quality guards that will play a bigger role with a year of varsity experience under their belts. The Tigers' biggest competition will be Fort Bend Bush in district. While the Tigers were bounced by Sam Houston in the second-round last season, watch for Travis to make a move towards the Regional Tourney.