AA blog: Week 11’s top weekend games; players to watch in region tourneys


Here is a look at the top boys and girls games of the final weekend of the regular season.


No. 2 Therrell at No. 3 South Atlanta, 7 p.m., Friday: This top five matchup represents the regular season finale for both teams before the Region 6 tournament. Historically, it's been South Atlanta (19-4, 12-1) that has held the upper hand, with Hornets coach Michael Reddick in his 21st season and having led the program to an AAA title in 2009 and the AA title in '17. While the Hornets are still among the best in the state, they've been outshined recently by the up-and-coming Panthers (19-5, 13-0), who last year as a sophomore-laden team won Region 6 and reached the AA quarterfinals. On Dec. 18, Therrell beat South Atlanta 54-52, which extended the Panthers' win streak to four in the series dating back to last year, when they went 3-0 against them. In that win, the Panthers were without one of their best players, forward Robbie Armbrester, but Re'Sean Frederick led the way in his absence with 19 points, eight rebounds, two assists, two blocks and one steal according to the blog Sandy's Spiel. South Atlanta's Ja'Qauvian Florence (24 points, seven rebounds, six steals, three assists, one block) led the Hornets, according to the report.


No. 4 Rabun County at Putnam County, 6 p.m., Friday: This is the season finale for both teams, which are at the top of the 8-AA standings. Rabun County (22-1) is 13-0 in 8-AA, while the Lady War Eagles (16-7) are 9-4 and tied for second place. These teams first played on Jan. 11, with the Lady Wildcats winning handily by a score of 74-54. In that game, Brooke Henricks (13 points, six rebounds) and Beth Payne (12 points, nine rebounds) guided the Lady Wildcats to the win. Their top player, senior guard Georgia Stockton, has signed with Presbyterian. The Lady War Eagles are led by junior wing Jashanti Simmons, who is averaging 20.5 points, 6 boards and 3.3 steals. With no other Putnam County player with a double-digit scoring average, the team pretty much goes as she goes. The Lady War Eagles hope to rebound from a disappointing loss on Tuesday to Elbert County, the team they're tied for second place with. They lost 47-26 after beating them 50-42 on Jan. 8. The Lady Wildcats, on the other hand, are on a 20-game win streak. They last lost to AAAAAAA's No. 9 North Forsyth, 66-44, on Dec. 1.


Here are a few key players to watch in the region tournaments:


  • Preston Crisp, Woodville-Tompkins: The 6-foot-5 senior wing eclipsed 1,000 career points in early January and has been the leader for the top-ranked Wolverines, who entered the weekend 24-0.
  • Robbie Armbrester, Therrell: The 6-foot-4 sophomore forward has been one of the main pieces for the No. 2-ranked Panthers, who last year burst onto the scene with a sophomore-laden team when he was a freshman, unseating defending state champions South Atlanta to claim 6-AA and reach the quarterfinals.
  • Emmanuel Jones, Glenn Hills: The 6-foot-7 junior forward averages a team-high 21.2 points for the No. 5 Spartans, teaming with fellow junior forward John Whitehead (20.1 points, 8.6 rebounds) to form a two-headed monster.


  • Destanee Wright, Dodge County: The 5-foot-5 senior guard leads No. 1 Dodge County with 22.6 points, 8.6 rebounds and 3.2 steals, guiding the Lady Indians to a 21-1 record heading into the weekend. They're seeking a second straight Region 3 title.
  • Trinity Jones, Fitzgerald: The 5-foot-5 junior guard averages 20.5 points, 3.9 steals, 3.6 assists and 3.2 rebounds for the undefeated Lady Purple Hurricane, who entered the weekend with a 22-0 record.
  • Makayla Timpson, Early County: Only a sophomore, the 6-foot-1 Timpson can do it all, playing center, forward and even point guard for the No. 7 Lady Bobcats. She's being heavily recruited and holds offers from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Tennessee, Florida State and Clemson, among others. She averages 17.9 points, 8.9 rebounds, five blocks and 2.5 steals.

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