Chattahoochee's Cameron Sheffield (3) dribbles against Lanier's Landon Fears (20). Chattahoochee won over Lanier 69-66 in overtime.(Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)
Photo: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC
Photo: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

Class AAAAAA blog: Chattahoochee boys, Forest Park girls end title droughts

The Chattahoochee boys team won the first state title in the program’s 29-year history and the Forest Park girls won their first title in 50 years when the GHSA crowned its Class AAAAAA basketball champions Saturday at the Macon Centreplex.

Chattahoochee got 31 points from Cameron Sheffield and 22 points from A.J. White in a 69-66 overtime victory against Lanier, a Gwinnett County school also seeking its first championship. 

Forest Park’s Joi Reid had 11 points and Sania Feagin scored 10 in the Panthers’ 46-30 victory over Glynn Academy, which was playing in the finals for the first time since 1952 and is still seeking its first championship. Forest Park’s only previous title came in 1970 in Class AAA, which was the state’s highest at the time. 

Here’s a look back at championship week in Class AAAAAA: 

*Boys recap: Lanier (26-6) forced overtime when Sion James made two free throws with 33 seconds remaining for a 56-56 tie, but Sheffield scored the first six points of the extra period to give Chattahoochee (24-7) the lead for good. A layup by James with 20 seconds remaining closed the gap to 66-65, but White answered with two free throws and the Cougars made the three-point lead stand up. James, the Region 8 player of the year, scored all 10 of his team’s points in overtime and finished with 27 points and 11 rebounds. 

*Girls recap: Janaya Jones scored six points in the first three-and-a-half minutes to help Forest Park (27-6) build a 9-2 lead that grew to 13-2 by the end of the first quarter. Glynn Academy cut the deficit to 21-15 on a layup by Zoesha Smith with 6:40 remaining in the third quarter but got no closer. Forest Park pushed the lead back to 12 points by the end of the quarter. Jones finished with nine points, four rebounds and four steals. Smith, a Georgia signee, had a game-high 15 points and 14 rebounds to lead Glynn Academy (26-5). 

*Cardiac kids: Lanier’s 15-game winning streak came to an end in Macon, but its streak of overtime games did not. The Longhorns’ loss to Chattahoochee was their fourth consecutive overtime game in the playoffs. Lanier rolled past Sprayberry 76-45 in the opening round but then needed extra time to beat Stephenson 60-58 in the second round, Hughes 58-55 in the quarterfinals and South Cobb 63-57 in the semifinals before heading to the final. Lanier, which opened in 2010, had never advanced beyond the second round. 

*County dominance: Chattahoochee’s win extended Fulton County’s title streak in AAAAAA to four years, following titles by Hughes in 2017 and 2018 and Tri-Cities in 2019. Since 2001, only two teams (Griffin in 2003 and Brunswick in 2015) from outside of Fulton or DeKalb County have won the title in the state’s second-highest class. DeKalb’s Miller Grove won seven in eight seasons between 2009 and 2016. On the girls’ side, Forest Park and Lovejoy (2018) have given Clayton County two titles in three years. 

*Award winner: Forest Park’s championship was the perfect ending of a great week for Feagin. On Friday, it was announced that she had been named the 2019-2020 winner of the Gatorade Georgia Girls Basketball Player of the Year award. The 6-foot-4 junior forward finished the season averaging 17.0 points, 10.2 rebounds, 3.6 blocked shots, 3.0 steals and 2.5 assists. She shared Region 4-AAAAAA co-player of the year honors with Lovejoy’s Genesis Bryant and is ranked No. 6 nationally among juniors by ESPN. 

*Championship game statistics 

Boys 

Chattahoochee 69, Lanier 66 

Chattahoochee (24-7): Cameron Sheffield 12-19 6-8 31; AJ White 4-9 11-12 22; Franklin Bailey 3-9 2-2 10; David McDaniel 2-6 2-5 6; Gil Matondo 0-0 0-0 0; Keith Murray 0-2 0-0 0; Jahari Williams 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 21-46 21-27 69. 

Lanier (26-6): Sion James 8-15 11-15 27; Andrew McConnell 5-14 0-1 13; Iajah Phillips 4-12 4-6 12; Ryan Johnson 2-6 1-2 6; Goran Uzunov 2-5 0-1 6; Mason Friedel 1-3 0-1 2; Landon Fears 0-1 0-0 0; Conner Marcantel 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-57 16-26 66. 

Chattahoochee – 15-19-6-16-13 – 69 

Lanier – 12-19-16-9-10 – 66 

3-point goals - Chattahoochee 6-19 (AJ White 3-7; Franklin Bailey 2-7; Cameron Sheffield 1-5), Lanier 6-22 (Andrew McConnell 3-11; Goran Uzunov 2-4; Ryan Johnson 1-4; Mason Friedel 0-1; Iajah Phillips 0-2). Fouled out - Chattahoochee-David McDaniel, Lanier - Mason Friedel; Ryan Johnson. Rebounds - Chattahoochee 40 (David McDaniel 14), Lanier 29 (Sion James 11). Assists - Chattahoochee 5 (Cameron Sheffield 2), Lanier 7 (Iajah Phillips 3). Total fouls - Chattahoochee 20, Lanier 25. Technical fouls – Chattahoochee - None, Lanier - None. 

Girls 

Forest Park 46, Glynn Academy 30 

Glynn Academy (26-5): Zoesha Smith 6-18 3-4 15; La'Trinity Best 1-9 2-2 4; Shamya Flanders 1-4 2-2 4; Alindria Dudley 1-1 0-0 3; Akirria Mountain 1-3 0-0 2; Talia Hamilton 0-5 2-2 2; Zuri Patrick 0-0 0-0 0; Laneia Taylor 0-5 0-2 0. Totals 10-45 9-12 30. 

Forest Park (27-6): Joi Reid 4-8 3-5 11; Sania Feagin 3-6 4-9 10; Janaya Jones 2-3 5-8 9; Jasmine Jacob 2-3 4-9 8; Jayda Brown 3-5 0-0 7; Jasmine Stevens 0-2 1-2 1; Janiya Simmons 0-0 0-0 0; Michayia Davis 0-0 0-0 0; Jordynn Webster 0-1 0-0 0; Simone Rowland 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 14-28 17-33 46. 

Glynn Academy – 2-11-9-8 – 30 

Forest Park – 13-8-13-12 – 46 

3-point goals - Glynn Academy 1-8 (Alindria Dudley 1-1; Akirria Mountain 0-2; Laneia Taylor 0-3; Zoesha Smith 0-2), Forest Park 1-4 (Jayda Brown 1-1; Sania Feagin 0-1; Jasmine Stevens 0-1; Jordynn Webster 0-1). Fouled out - Glynn Academy - Talia Hamilton; Shamya Flanders, Forest Park - None. Rebounds - Glynn Academy 37 (Zoesha Smith 14), Forest Park 25 (Sania Feagin 5). Assists - Glynn Academy 3 (Laneia Taylor 3), Forest Park 6 (Jasmine Jacob 2). Total fouls - Glynn Academy 24, Forest Park 15. Technical fouls - Glynn Academy - None, Forest Park - None. 

Statistics provided by West Georgia Sports Information Services

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