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Concordia Lutheran, Bishop Luers set to renew postseason rivalry

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For more on area basketball, follow Justin Kenny on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/jkenny_ns

Dominant SAC rivals have won a combined 25 straight sectional games

Monday, February 3, 2014 - 12:14 am

For the last six years, the Bishop Luers girls' basketball program has been unmatched in sectional play, winning 14 consecutive games and six straight titles.

The last defeat for the Knights in the sectional round came in 2007 in the championship game to Concordia Lutheran.

For the first time since that meeting, the two storied programs will face off again.

The sectional draw for the 39th Annual IHSAA Girls Basketball State Tournament was held on Sunday, with Concordia Lutheran and Bishop Luers pitted against one another in the opening round of the Class 3A Garrett Sectional.

The postseason is set to begin on Tuesday, Feb. 11, with the Cadets and Knights playing on Wednesday, Feb. 12 at 6 p.m. at Garrett.

“I figured we'd have to play them some time down the road, either them or Garrett,” said Bishop Luers coach Denny Renier. “We both have the challenge of playing for the third time (this season).”

Class 3A No. 10 Concordia Lutheran (16-3) has won the first two meetings between the two SAC rivals this season, knocking off Bishop Luers 46-43 in the regular season and 56-44 in the SAC Holiday Tournament.

Despite the two setbacks, Renier believes his team is playing much better basketball as of late.

“You have to probably consider (Concordia Lutheran) the favorites,” Renier said. “We know it is going to be a task (to beat them).”

The two programs have won a combined 25 straight sectional contests, with the Cadets having won four straight sectional crowns.

No. 14 Bishop Luers is competing in Class 3A this season, with a whole new set of challenges to face.

“The big shift is, we're not used to this in the sectional,” Renier said. “In the past our sectional has not been very good in Class 2A. But this is fine for us. It is a challenge and we look forward to it.”

The rest of the sectional is no less difficult.

At 19-0, third-ranked Garrett is out to prove that its regular season dominance can be continued into the postseason. The Railroaders will take on Angola in the opening round on Tuesday, with the winner taking on Leo (16-2).

While plenty of eyes will be on those matchups, more will likely be on the first-round showdown between to state powers in which someone's sectional winning streak will come to an end on just the second day of the tournament.

“There is no doubt we are going to have to play our very best,” Renier said.