The 2011-2012 high school basketball season officially gets under way today as a handful of area squads take to the hardwood for their season openers.
Two local Class AAA teams will be in action as Elkins entertains East Fairmont, and Lewis County visits Braxton County. Both games are scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
The Lady Tigers will be in what veteran coach Nancy Lewis calls "a rebuilding year" with only four regulars returning from last season's 7-17 team.
Lewis County finished 1-22 last year and will be under the direction of new head coach Dave Gossa.
In Class AA, Philip Barbour will be in action when it plays host to Tucker County.
Both squads enter the season with high hopes, especially the Lady Mountain Lions, who return 11 players from last year's state tournament team.
Tucker County, which finished 17-8 last season, is ranked No. 9 in the Class A girls preseason basketball poll that was released on Monday.
The Lady Colts, meanwhile, finished 11-13 last season and came within one win of making the state tourney a year ago.
Moorefield will entertain Berkeley Springs and Harman will visit Union for today's remaining games. Both contests are scheduled for 6 p.m.
Pocahontas County was the only other area team making the preseason rankings.
The Lady Warriors, who open the season Wednesday at James Monroe (Va.), are No. 6 in Class A.
Saint Joseph, St. Marys and Wheeling Central are the top three teams in Class A. Charleston Catholic and Williamstown round out the Top 5.
Summers County, Scott Westside, Berkeley Springs and Ravenswood make up the first five spots in the Class AA preseason rankings.
South Charleston, Bridgeport, Greenbrier East, University and George Washington top Class AAA.