Here are some of the best games on tap this weekend:
(Friday) No. 3 (Private) Walker vs. Whitefield Academy. At 14-2, the Wolverines are off to their hottest start in program history. One loss was Tuesday to defending state champion and current No. 1 St. Francis (80-59). The other was December 3 at Whitefield Academy (55-54). Whitefield has won three of its last four with a young team led by senior forward AJ Hopkins. Walker are led by the senior quartet of forward Burke Chebuhar, and guards Chandler Baker, Christopher Newell and Omar Cooper.
(Friday) No. 4 (Private) Mt. Pisgah Christian vs. Mt. Paran Christian. The Region 6 rivals played a thriller back on December 3, with Mt. Pisgah prevailing 47-46. The Patriots have only three losses on the season, one each to No. 1 St. Francis and No. 3 Walker, the other to Class AAAAAAA Cherokee. The loss to Mt. Pisgah started the Eagles on a slide where they lost five of six, but they have since recovered to win their last four games going into tonight’s rematch.
(Saturday) No. 2 (Private) Greenforest at No. 8 (Public) Drew Charter. Both teams have records that are a bit deceiving. Greenforest is just 7-8 but four of those loses were forfeits for playing an ineligible player. Drew is 10-6 but only one of those defeats was to a Class A school, No. 6 (Private) Galloway. The other five were to schools from larger classifications or schools from outside of Georgia. Both teams are capable of making deep runs in the post season. Greenforest is led by guard/forward Lamar Oden and center Christian Fussell. Drew counters with sophomores JaKobe Strozier and JaQuez Thornton, and senior Teronta Evans.
(Saturday) No. 2 (Public) Wilcox County at No. 9 (Public) Turner County. The Patriots will put their undefeated (12-0) record on the line against their Region 2 rivals from Ashburn. Wilcox won the first meeting, 70-53, back on December 19. Turner (11-3) had won seven straight since the loss, before the Rebels were tripped up on the road by an unranked but good team from Macon County (54-45) on Wednesday.
(Friday) No. 4 (Private) Holy Innocents’ at No. 6 (Private) Galloway. This is the first meeting between two of the three teams – Holy Innocents’, Galloway and Wesleyan – in Region 5 that are capable of winning a state title. Holy Innocents’ (10-5), the defending state champs, has played a monster non-region schedule. The Bears’ losses have come to the top ranked team in Tennessee, Ensworth of Nashville, Class AAAAA No. 1 Buford, Class AAAAAA No. 2 Forest Park, the top ranked team in Alabama, Hoover, and Class AAAAAA No. 1 Lovejoy. Galloway (13-3) has only loss to ranked teams as well, though two were at the hands of private Class A teams – No. 5 Mt. Paran and No. 6 Greenforest.
(Friday) No. 3 (Private) Wesleyan vs. Paideia. This is the first in a tough two-game stretch this weekend for the Wolves, who have lost just two games this season (12-2), both to teams ranked No. 1 – Class AAAAA Buford and Class AAAAAA Lovejoy. Paideia is unranked (11-3) but the Pythons are well on their way to advancing to the state playoffs for the 19th time in the past 20 seasons.
(Saturday) No. 3 (Private) Wesleyan vs. Class AA No. 2 Douglass. The Wolves will face defending Class AA champion Douglass in the final game of the annual Hudl Krossover Classic at Archer High School. Douglass is led by 6-foot-3 senior forward Ikenya King and junior guard Ashuntee Weems, considered by many to be one of the state’s best backcourt players.
(Saturday) No. 3 (Public) Clinch County at Lanier County. The Panthers are 10-1, but still looking to earn respect. The majority of their wins have come against teams with losing records. Their only loss this season was to Turner County (61-57), which is unranked at 8-6.
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