3 more ranked boys teams upset in Round 2; girls’ bracket follows script


Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Eleven region champions and three teams that had to win two postseason games on the road are among the 16 teams that have advanced to the quarterfinal round of the Class 6A boys and girls basketball playoffs, to be held Tuesday and Wednesday at on-campus sites.

The boys tournament has been marked by upsets, with only four of the top 10 teams making it through the first two rounds. No. 2 Shiloh (lost to Douglass County 54-41), No. 3 Lee County (Riverwood, 87-84) and No. 6 Etowah (Alpharetta, 56-50) lost in the first round. Three more exited in Round 2, as No. 4 St. Pius lost to Jonesboro 64-55, No. 7 Pope lost to Douglas County, and No. 10 Sprayberry lost to No. 8 Hughes 58-51.

Top-ranked Alexander, No. 5 Woodward Academy, No. 8 Hughes and No. 9 Grovetown are the only ranked boys teams remaining. Alexander (2023) and Grovetown (2022) won the past two championships in Class 6A, and they will face each other in the quarterfinals.

Hughes is the only remaining ranked boys team that did not win its region championship. The Panthers finished second to Alexander in Region 5 during the regular season but lost to South Paulding in the region tournament semifinals and settled for the No. 3 for the state tournament.

Hughes went on the road to defeat Habersham Central and Sprayberry to reach the quarterfinals. Riverwood and Douglas County, the only No. 4 seeds remaining, also won two road playoff games. Riverwood won at Lee County and Evans, and Douglas County beat two ranked opponents on the road, Shiloh and Pope.

Riverwood tied for first place with St. Pius in Region 4 during the regular season but was upset by Marist and North Atlanta in the region tournament and fell to a deceptively low No. 4 seed.

The other boys quarterfinalists are Jonesboro and Woodstock. Jonesboro was the Region 3 regular-season champion but lost to second-place Woodward Academy in the region-tournament final. Woodstock finished in second place in Region 7 behind Etowah but avenged two losses to the Eagles with a 36-35 victory in the region-tournament final.

On the girls’ side, which has been relatively free of upsets, seven of the eight region champions reached the quarterfinals. They are Tift County (Region 1), Woodward Academy (Region 3), Marist (Region 4), Hughes (Region 5), defending state champion River Ridge (Region 6), Pope (Region 7) and North Forsyth (Region 8).

Pope is the only non-ranked team in the quarterfinals. They Greyhounds were No. 9 in late January but fell out of the rankings after suffering their second regular-season loss to Lassiter. Pope avenged those losses with a 55-48 victory over the Trojans in the championship game of the Region 7 tournament to earn the No. 1 seed.

Through the first two rounds, ranked girls teams have gone 17-3, with the three losses consisting of second-round games in which top-10 teams lost to higher ranked opponents. No. 6 New Manchester lost to No. 1 River Ridge 71-56, No. 9 Brunswick lost to No. 8 Veterans, and No. 10 Rome lost to No. 4 Hughes 59-38.

Brunswick was the only girls region champion that failed to reach the quarterfinals. The Pirates finished in a tie for first place with Glynn Academy in Region 2 during the regular season before defeating the Red Terrors 71-49 in the region tournament championship game.

North Forsyth improved to 29-0 with a 45-28 victory over Sequoyah in the second round. The Raiders and Class 7A No. 1 Grayson are the only remaining undefeated teams, boys or girls, in any classification.

The semifinals will be played Saturday at the University of West Georgia. The girls games are scheduled for 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., with the boys to play at 3 and 7.

*State tournament scores, matchups:


Second round

Veterans 76, Brunswick 42

Hughes 59, Rome 38

Woodward Academy 89, St. Pius 40

North Forsyth 45, Sequoyah 28

Pope 53, South Paulding 44

Marist 51, Lakeside-Evans 23

River Ridge 71, New Manchester 56

Tift County 65, Glynn Academy 37


(R1 #2) Veterans at (R5 #1) Hughes

(R3 #1) Woodward Academy at (R8 #1) North Forsyth

(R7 #1) Pope at (R4 #1) Marist

(R6 #1) River Ridge at (R1 #1) Tift County


Second round

Grovetown 59, North Atlanta 36

Alexander 69, Alpharetta 53

Woodward Academy 54, Marist 39

Douglas County 53, Pope 50

Hughes 58, Sprayberry 51

Jonesboro 64, St. Pius 55

Woodstock 65, South Paulding 54

Riverwood 95, Evans 71


(R2 #1) Grovetown at (R5 #1) Alexander

(R5 #4) Douglas County at (R3 #1) Woodward Academy

(R5 #3) Hughes at (R3 #2) Jonesboro

(R4 #4) Riverwood at (R6 #1) Woodstock