Weekend preview: State's #1 girls recruit Staiti expands her game

At 6 feet, 5 inches, West Forsyth senior Jenna Staiti knows what it’s like for a tall girl to get the ball on the perimeter of a high school basketball game. The taunts usually come from the opposing student section: ‘’Shoot! Shoot!’’

Be careful what you wish for. Staiti – the No. 1 senior recruit in Georgia - has made 14 three-pointers this season with the same touch that allows her to make 82 percent of her free throws. [Might be apples and oranges, but fwiw, Shaquille O'Neal made one 3-pointer in his NBA career, same as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.]

The ‘3’ is just another element to Staiti’s game that she seems to improve on each year, according to her coach, David May.

‘’She gets so many double-teams,’’ May said. ‘’Ninety percent of teams throw two kids on her in the post because she can score so well. If she can go on the perimeter and pull two way, that puts a lot of pressure on a defense.’’

Staiti is averaging 25 points, 14 rebounds and four blocked shots for an 11-3 team that is ranked No. 8 in Class AAAAAA. She has signed with Maryland.

Top games this weekend involving AAAAAA teams ---

Credit: Todd Holcomb

Credit: Todd Holcomb

Staiti and Sarah Myers live five miles apart in Cumming and play on the same AAU basketball team. Both have signed with Maryland.

On Monday, they’re about to play for first place in Region 6-AAAAAA – Myers for fifth-ranked South Forsyth (13-3, 10-0) and Staiti for eighth-ranked West Forsyth (12-3, 10-0).

South Forsyth, which broke through and made the semifinals in 2014, is probably the favorite.

Myers, a 5-foot-10 shooting guard, averages 20.1 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.8 steals.

Here are a few other good games involving AAAAAA teams this weekend ...

Riverdale (Tenn.) at Archer girls, Saturday: No. 2 Archer (14-2, 8-0) is the host for the six-game Krossover Classic on Saturday, and its opponent in the 7:30 p.m. game, Riverdale, is ranked No. 15 nationally by MaxPreps. Riverdale point guard Anastasia Hayes (No. 20) and Archer forward Autumn Newby (No. 25) are on ESPN's list of the best 25 junior college prospects in the country.

Shiloh at Dacula boys, Saturday: Second-ranked Shiloh (13-2, 7-0) won its 28th straight region game this week in a 55-53 victory over No. 10 Berkmar. Josh Okogie scored 17 points and had eight rebounds. The region race could be all but over Saturday unless Dacula (12-4, 5-2), one of three teams with two region losses, can defend its home court. The Falcons rely on seniors Devon Tucker (20.9 points per game) and Derek St. Hilaire (20.3).

Gainesville at Wheeler boys, Monday: Wheeler coach Doug Lipscomb will welcome his alma mater to Lipscomb Gymnasium on Monday at 3 p.m. Gainesville (10-3, two losses by forfeit) is ranked No. 3 in AAAAA and features D'Marcus Simonds, a shooting guard who has signed with Georgia State. Wheeler (12-5), ranked No. 1 in AAAAAA, has several blue-chip prospects, most notably Georgia Tech signee Romello White.