1. Clarence cross country. Both the boys and girls teams are ranked first among Western New York large schools (the girls are tied with Sweet Home) after the Red Devils’ outstanding performance at the 62-team (and 62nd annual) Baldwinsville Invitational near Syracuse, a meet that included programs from throughout upstate.
2. East Aurora cross country. A bit of a Devil-ish running re-run. Both the boys and girls teams are ranked first among Western New York small schools after the Blue Devils’ outstanding performance at their own East Aurora Invitational. EA’s teams swept the large school races, something the powerful program has been known to do before.
3. St. Mary’s girls volleyball. The Power 10 loves teams that have clearly established that they are the best in Western New York in their respective sports. Of the fall sports polls in which first-place votes are listed, the top-ranked small school Lancers are the only team that is a unanimous No. 1.
4. Clarence girls swimming. The overall 2012-13 Power 10 No. 1 and two-time defending state champion has been, not surprisingly, dominant in 3-0 start.
5. Football’s large three. St. Joe’s, Canisius and Jamestown all getting first place votes, all coming off impressive wins, all with nice matchups this weekend: Canisius at St. Francis (Monsignor Martin opener for both) and Lancaster at Jamestown (Class AA battle of 3-0 teams) at 7 p.m. Friday; St. Joe’s hosts state Class AA No. 1 Aquinas at 1 p.m. Saturday.
6. Football’s not-so-small three. No. 1 small school Depew and No. 2 Alden (which is No. 1 on my ballot) meet for their great annual showdown at 7:30 Friday in Depew (and both will be represented on PrepTalkTV tonight at 7:30). Meanwhile, some think the state’s top-ranked Class D team, defending state champion Randolph, might be better than both (two first-place votes in the poll) .
7. Williamsville East and Canisius boys soccer. East got the No. 1 large school spot, but No. 3 Canisius, with two first-place votes, remains undefeated.
8. Barker field hockey. No. 1 team in Western New York off to a 4-0 start.
9. Sweet Home cross country. A co-No. 1 large school spot with the Clarence girls and the No. 2 spot behind Clarence on the boys side says a lot.
10. St. Joe’s golf. Big back-to-back wins over league leaders Nichols Tuesday and St. Francis (on a tiebreaker) Wednesday. Nichols hosts the Midwest Prep Classic at Diamond Hawk Saturday and Sunday.
Honor roll: Clarence, Nichols and International Prep boys soccer; Canisius boys volleyball; Sacred Heart girls golf; Williamsville South, Lockport and Wilson girls soccer; Lockport, St. Francis and St. Joe’s boys golf; Orchard Park and Clarence girls volleyball; Nardin swimming.