State champions in review: 9 schools win first-ever titles in 2017-18

Nine Georgia high schools won their first-ever state championships in sports this academic year and were among 69 schools overall that claimed the 163 state titles awarded by the Georgia High School Association.

Westminster captured the most titles with eight. The Buckhead private school has won 287 state titles recorded by the GHSA, by far the most among Georgia schools. Westminster has won no fewer than five state titles each of the past 10 years.

Blessed Trinity, Buford, Gordon Lee and Marist won four state titles apiece in 2017-18. (See lists at bottom.) Benedictine, Jefferson, McIntosh, Milton, Parkview and Wesleyan each won three.

Those schools are accustomed to winning championships. It was a special year for the nine that hadn’t. 

Raising GHSA trophies for the first time were Creekview, Dutchtown, Hapeville Charter, Johnson-Gainesville, Lake Oconee Academy, Riverside Military Academy, Rutland, Sonoraville and Spalding.

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Lake Oconee’s Class A girls golf championship corresponded with the school’s first graduating class. Lake Oconee is a charter school in Greensboro that first competed in varsity GHSA sports in 2016-17.

Most of the rest opened between 2000 and 2010. Those include Creekview of Cherokee County (softball), Dutchtown of Henry (boys track), Hapeville Charter of Fulton (football), Rutland of Macon (girls golf), Sonoraville of Calhoun (wrestling) and Spalding of Griffin (girls basketball).

The oldest schools breaking through – by far – were Johnson and Riverside Military, both of Gainesville

Johnson dates to 1958, when the school opened as South Hall. It became Johnson in the early 1970s. Johnson defeated McIntosh 1-0 in the Class AAAAA boys soccer final after runner-up finishes in 2014 and 2016.

“There is not one community in the state that deserves this more than Johnson, and that’s from the high school all the way down to the middle school,’’ Johnson coach Brian Shirley told the Gainesville Times. “We’re so blessed to get to do this for the community. I’m so happy to see this after our guys worked their butts off all year.”

Riverside, the Class A private-school champion in boys track and field, was established in 1907. But the military boarding school was not a traditional member of the GHSA until the 1980s. It also had a brief stint in the Georgia Independent School Association and won a football state-championship in that organization in 2005.

State titles by school:

Alexander - Track (Girls)

Allatoona - Track (Boys)

Alpharetta - Soccer (Girls)

Aquinas - Basketball (Boys)

Armuchee - Cheerleading

Banks County - Cross Country (Boys)

Benedictine (3) - Baseball, Soccer (Boys), Tennis (Boys)

Bleckley County (2) - Cross Country (Girls), Tennis (Girls)

Blessed Trinity (4) - Football, Lacrosse (Boys), Lacrosse (Girls), Swimming (Girls)

Brookwood (2) - Swimming (Boys), Swimming (Girls)

Buford (4) - Basketball (Girls), Track (Girls), Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Calhoun (2) - Football, Softball (Fastpitch)

Calvary Day - Volleyball

Cambridge (2) - Cross Country (Boys), Cross Country (Girls)

Camden County (2) - Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Carrollton - Cheerleading

Cedar Grove - Track (Boys)

Chamblee - Tennis (Girls)

Chapel Hill (2) - Cheerleading, Track (Girls)

Chattahoochee - Soccer (Boys)

Clinch County - Football

Columbus - Golf (Boys)

Commerce (2) - Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Coosa - Volleyball

Creekview - Softball (Fastpitch)

Dalton - Swimming (Boys)

Darlington - Golf (Girls)

Dutchtown - Track (Boys)

Eagle's Landing Christian - Football

East Coweta - Softball (Fastpitch)

Elbert County - Track (Boys)

First Presbyterian - Soccer (Girls)

Flowery Branch - Tennis (Boys)

Georgia Military - Cross Country (Boys)

Gordon Lee (4) - Baseball, Cheerleading, Golf (Boys), Softball (Fastpitch)

Greater Atlanta Christian - Basketball (Boys)

Greenville - Basketball (Girls)

Hapeville Charter - Football

Haralson County - Softball (Slowpitch)

Harrison - Volleyball

Hebron Christian - Cross Country (Boys)

Holy Innocents' - Golf (Boys)

Irwin County - Tennis (Boys)

Jefferson (3) - Baseball, Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Johns Creek (2) - Golf (Boys), Tennis (Boys)

Johnson-Gainesville - Soccer (Boys)

Johnson-Savannah - Basketball (Girls)

Lake Oconee Academy - Golf (Girls)

Lambert (2) - Lacrosse (Boys), Soccer (Boys)

Landmark Christian - Cross Country (Girls)

Laney - Basketball (Girls)

Langston Hughes - Basketball (Boys)

Lee County - Football

Locust Grove - Softball (Fastpitch)

Loganville - Baseball

Lovejoy - Basketball (Girls)

Lovett (2) - Baseball, Tennis (Boys)

Marietta (2) - Cross Country (Girls), Track (Girls)

Marist (4) - Cross Country (Boys), Cross Country (Girls), Soccer (Girls), Volleyball

McIntosh (3) - Cross Country (Boys), Cross Country (Girls), Volleyball

Meadowcreek - Basketball (Boys)

Metter - Golf (Boys)

Mill Creek - Golf (Boys)

Milton (3) – Cheerleading (Co-ed), Cross Country (Boys), Lacrosse (Girls)

Monroe - Track (Girls)

Montgomery County - Track (Boys)

Mount Paran Christian - Cheerleading

North Gwinnett (2) - Football, Golf (Girls)

North Hall - Wrestling (Duals)

North Oconee (2) - Tennis (Boys), Tennis (Girls)

Northgate - Cheerleading

Northside, Columbus - Softball (Fastpitch)

Northview (2) - Golf (Girls), Tennis (Girls)

Northwest Whitfield - Soccer (Boys)

Pace Academy - Volleyball

Paideia - Soccer (Boys)

Parkview (3) - Baseball, Soccer (Girls), Track (Boys)

Pierce County - Cheerleading

Pope (2) - Baseball, Swimming (Girls)

Richmond Hill (2) - Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Riverside Military - Track (Boys)

Rockmart - Softball (Fastpitch)

Rome - Football

Rutland - Golf (Girls)

Social Circle (2) - Wrestling (Duals), Wrestling (Traditional)

Sonoraville - Wrestling (Traditional)

South Forsyth (2) - Cheerleading, Tennis (Boys)

Spalding - Basketball (Girls)

St. Pius (2) - Swimming (Boys), Track (Boys)

St. Vincent's (2) - Golf (Girls), Soccer (Girls)

Starr's Mill (2) - Golf (Boys), Golf (Girls)

Stratford Academy - Tennis (Boys)

Tattnall Square - Baseball

Telfair County (2) - Cross Country (Girls), Track (Girls)

Thomasville - Basketball (Boys)

Trion - Tennis (Girls)

Upson-Lee - Basketball (Boys)

Vidalia - Track (Girls)

Walker - Tennis (Girls)

Walton (2) - Tennis (Girls), Volleyball

Ware County - Riflery (Air Rifle)

Warner Robins - Basketball (Boys)

Wesleyan (3) - Basketball (Girls), Softball (Fastpitch), Track (Girls)

West Forsyth - Gymnastics (Girls)

Westlake - Basketball (Girls)

Westminster (8) - Cross Country (Boys), Cross Country (Girls), Golf (Boys), Soccer (Boys), Soccer (Girls), Swimming (Boys), Swimming (Girls), Tennis (Girls)

Whitewater - Soccer (Girls)

Wilkinson County - Basketball (Boys)

Woodward Academy - Golf (Girls)

State titles by sport:


Parkview – 7A

Pope – 6A

Loganville – 5A

Jefferson – 4A

Lovett – 3A

Benedictine – 2A

Gordon Lee – 1A (PUB)

Tattnall Square Academy – 1A (PRI)

Basketball (Boys) 

Meadowcreek – 7A

Langston Hughes – 6A

Warner Robins – 5A

Upson-Lee – 4A

Greater Atlanta Christian – 3A

Thomasville – 2A

Wilkinson County – 1A (PUB)

Aquinas – 1A (PRI)

Basketball (Girls) 

Westlake – 7A

Lovejoy – 6A

Buford – 5A

Spalding – 4A

Johnson-Savannah – 3A

Laney – 2A

Greenville – 1A (PUB)

Wesleyan – 1A (PRI)


South Forsyth – 7A

Northgate – 6A

Carrollton – 5A

Chapel Hill – 4A

Pierce County – 3A

Armuchee – 2A

Gordon Lee – 1A (PUB)

Mount Paran Christian – 1A (PRI)

Milton – Co-ed

Cross Country (Boys) 

Milton – 7A

Cambridge – 6A

McIntosh – 5A

Marist – 4A

Westminster – 3A

Banks County – 2A

Georgia Military – 1A (PUB)

Hebron Christian – 1A (PRI)

Cross Country (Girls) 

Marietta – 7A

Cambridge – 6A

McIntosh – 5A

Marist – 4A

Westminster – 3A

Bleckley County – 2A

Telfair County – 1A (PUB)

Landmark Christian – 1A (PRI)


North Gwinnett – 7A

Lee County – 6A

Rome – 5A

Blessed Trinity – 4A

Calhoun – 3A

Hapeville Charter – 2A

Clinch County – 1A (PUB)

Eagle's Landing Christian – 1A (PRI)

Golf (Boys) 

Mill Creek – 7A

Johns Creek – 6A

Starr's Mill – 5A

Columbus – 4A

Westminster – 3A

Metter – 2A

Gordon Lee – 1A (PUB)

Holy Innocents' – 1A (PRI)

Golf (Girls) 

North Gwinnett – 7A

Northview – 6A

Starr's Mill – 5A

Woodward Academy – 4A

Rutland – 3A

St. Vincent's – 2A

Lake Oconee Academy – 1A (PUB)

Darlington – 1A (PRI)


West Forsyth – OPEN

Lacrosse (Boys)  

Lambert – 7A/6A

Blessed Trinity – 5A-1A

Milton – 7A/6A

Blessed Trinity – 5A-1A

Riflery (Air Rifle) 

Ware County – OPEN

Soccer (Boys)  

Lambert – 7A

Chattahoochee – 6A

Johnson-Gainesville – 5A

Northwest Whitfield – 4A

Westminster – 3A

Benedictine – 2A

Paideia – 1A

Soccer (Girls) 

Parkview – 7A

Alpharetta – 6A

Whitewater – 5A

Marist – 4A

Westminster – 3A

St. Vincent's – 2A

First Presbyterian – 1A

Softball (Fastpitch) 

East Coweta – 7A

Creekview – 6A

Locust Grove – 5A

Northside-Columbus – 4A

Calhoun – 3A

Rockmart – 2A

Gordon Lee – 1A (PUB)

Wesleyan – 1A (PRI)

Softball (Slowpitch) 

Haralson County – OPEN

Swimming (Boys)  

Brookwood – 7A

Dalton – 6A

St. Pius – 5A/4A

Westminster – 3A-1A

Brookwood – 7A

Pope – 6A

Blessed Trinity – 5A/4A

Westminster – 3A-1A

Tennis (Boys) 

South Forsyth – 7A

Johns Creek – 6A

Flowery Branch – 5A

North Oconee – 4A

Lovett – 3A

Benedictine – 2A

Irwin County – 1A (PUB)

Stratford Academy – 1A (PRI)

Tennis (Girls) 

Walton – 7A

Northview – 6A

Chamblee – 5A

North Oconee – 4A

Westminster – 3A

Bleckley County – 2A

Trion – 1A (PUB)

Walker – 1A (PRI)

Track (Boys) 

Parkview – 7A

Allatoona – 6A

Dutchtown – 5A

St. Pius – 4A

Cedar Grove – 3A

Elbert County – 2A

Montgomery County – 1A (PUB)

Riverside Military Academy – 1A (PRI)

Track (Girls) 

Marietta – 7A

Alexander – 6A

Buford – 5A

Chapel Hill – 4A

Monroe – 3A

Vidalia – 2A

Telfair County – 1A (PUB)

Wesleyan – 1A (PRI)


Walton – 7A

Harrison – 6A

McIntosh – 5A

Marist – 4A

Pace Academy – 3A

Coosa – 2A

Calvary Day – 1A

Wrestling (Duals) 

Camden County – 7A

Richmond Hill – 6A

Buford – 5A

Jefferson – 4A

North Hall – 3A

Social Circle – 2A

Commerce – 1A

Wrestling (Traditional) 

Camden County – 7A

Richmond Hill – 6A

Buford – 5A

Jefferson – 4A

Sonoraville – 3A

Social Circle – 2A

Commerce – 1A

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