The No. 5 Jordan boys answered a lot of questions about superiority in Region 5 on Friday when it routed No. 6 Manchester 71-55. The Red Jackets (19-2, 6-0) jumped on Manchester early, scoring the first nine points of the game and taking a 17-2 lead thanks to some hot shooting and terrific defense.
Center Marcus Powell led Jordan with 17 points and forward Brandon Simmons contributed 13 points.
Jordan’s taller lineup – Powell is 6-foot-5, Simmons is 6-4 — proved to be a problem for Manchester, which doesn’t have a starter taller than 6-1. The Blue Devils (13-2, 5-1) got 12 points from Saiquan Terry, 11 from Damien Turner and 10 from Denzel Martin.
Manchester won the first meeting 72-69 in overtime in December. The two clubs could meet again in the playoffs.
Model girls win 18th straight
The No. 3 Model girls won their 18th straight game, beating Coosa 72-23. The Blue Devils (21-1) opened the game on a 32-3 run and didn’t allow Coosa to score a basket until three minutes were left in the opening half.
Timia Reynolds scored 20 points and Carla Clemmons scored 18 for the Blue Devils, who improved to 10-0 in Region 7-AA Subregion A.
Coosa outlasted rival Model 70-62 in the boys game. Slade Shumate led Coosa (17-3) with 23 points and Christian McFather scored 20. Coosa’s Tyler Bradley had 16 points and a team-high 12 rebounds. Model’s Shaq Calhoun had a game-high 27 points and 18 rebounds, while Quinton Cotton scored 16.
Brooks girls keep rolling
The Brooks County girls are the team to beat in Region 1. The Trojans (15-3) improved to 8-0 in the league after beating Berrien 58-48 on Friday for their fifth consecutive victory.
Brooks could put things away if it beats Early County on Friday. Early County (12-4) is two games behind, but the Bobcats need a big turnaround, as they suffered a 78-40 spanking the last time it played Brooks.
Start your engines in Region 6
Things should begin to get more interesting in Region 6 this week. Matchups in one of the state’s most powerful leagues begin to feature the best teams against each other as the playoffs draw near.
The No. 1 Buford girls (14-6) overpowered Clarkston 75-12 on Friday, as MacKenzie Darrah had 19 points. The No. 2 Buford boys (15-5) won 78-52 over the Angoras, as T.J. Shipes posted 18 points and 12 rebounds and A.J. Davis scored 13 points with 11 rebounds.
Buford hosts No. 6 Decatur on Tuesday and then close the regular season against rival Greater Atlanta Christian.
Greater Atlanta Christian didn’t play on Friday. The No. 1-ranked boys (16-4) played a showcase game against Butler at Augusta State on Saturday. The No. 7 GAC girls (15-5) face a challenge against Decatur on Friday; the Bulldogs beat GAC 47-42 in December.
The Decatur girls (19-3) whipped Cross Keys 70-8 on Friday and are expected to be factor in the playoffs. The one-two punch of Queen Alford and Jordan Dillard gives the Bulldogs two outstanding players. Decatur pressed Buford to the limit before losing 45-41 on Jan. 6.
Things aren’t quite as tense in Division B, where the South Atlanta boys and Lovett girls have comfortable leads.
The No. 9 South Atlanta boys (15-5) defeated Jackson 60-52 on Friday and have won 10 straight games, but face some critical rematches down the stretch. The Hornets play a Lovett team they beat by two points, a Westminster club they beat by four, and a Blessed Trinity team they beat by seven. But South Atlanta will have the home-court advantage in each of those crucial games.
The Lovett girls (16-4) lost its showdown with Buford 58-44 last weekend, but await a possible rematch in the region tournament. Lovett is led by Division I signees Tatianna Jackson, who has signed with Chattanooga, and Christen Johnson, who has signed with Northwestern.