Looking at the world of Geogia high school basketball in the highest classification, here are five bits of news …
And remember this is a blog. We also want to know what you’re seeing on the hardwood this season.
- Tift County’s boys are 3-0. That’s newsworthy because every other preseason Top 10 boys team has lost. Kansas signee Brannen Greene, perhaps the state’s best player, has scored 32 points or better in all three Tift victories, and four other players are averaging 10 points or more. The rest of the Top 10 is less-than-perfect. No. 1 Norcross, still missing key players from the football team, has lost twice, once to a Florida team, another to No. 7 Shiloh, which has lost to No. 10 Berkmar, which has lost to No. 8 Peachtree Ridge, which has lost to No. 5 North Cobb, which has lost to Class A power North Cobb Christian. No. 3 Wheeler and No. 6 Milton have lost to Roswell. No. 9 Alpharetta has lost multiple times. No. 4 Westlake was the last to give in, losing its first game last weekend to a team from Tennessee.
- Roswell’s boys sweep Milton and Wheeler. Roswell is only 4-4 overall but beat state powers Milton (70-60) and Wheeler (72-69) in Region 5 games last week. Roswell’s top player is point guard Sean Brennan, a four-year varsity player who has signed with North Florida. He scored 25 against Milton and 22 against Wheeler and was 22-of-24 from the free-throw line in those games. Guard Matt Beneduci played well against Wheeler, scoring 17 points and getting 10 rebounds.
- North Gwinnett’s boys are 6-0 with victories over Whitefield Academy and Columbia. Perhaps North Gwinnett should’ve been ranked in preseason. The Bulldogs upset Wheeler on the road in the state playoffs last year and made the quarterfinals, losing to eventual champion Milton. But North Gwinnett lost Chris Bolden to Georgia Tech. North Gwinnett is back in the hunt with two juniors and three sophomores in the starting lineup. Wingman Kam Calhoun and point guard Tobias Howard started as freshmen last season.
- North Cobb’s girls are 6-0 with victories over 2012 state champion McEachern and runner-up Hillgrove. North Cobb, ranked No. 3 in preseason, also won the Darlington Holiday Classic with wins over Calhoun and Darlington. Sophomore Kyrie’ Chandler was named tournament MVP. She is leading the team in scoring (12.7 ppg) and assists (6.2). North Cobb played its first four games without last season’s leading scorer, Amber Reevers. She suffered a torn ACL in the state playoffs last season. North Cobb is allowing only 32 points per game.
- The preseason girls Top 10 is holding out a little longer than the boys in losing their first games. The undefeated teams are No. 3 North Cobb, No. 4 North Gwinnett and No. 7 Parkview. No. 1 McEachern, which lost four of its top six players from the 33-0 state champion, lost its first five games. No. 2 Norcross lost its first game on Saturday to nationally ranked Hoover of Alabama. No. 9 Woodstock lost on consecutive nights last week to Cherokee and then No. 6 Alpharetta, which has won four straight since losing its opener to Fayette County. No. 5 Mill Creek is 5-4, with all losses to ranked teams, including to Parkview twice, although by more than 20 each time. No. 10 Hillgrove’s only loss came last week to North Cobb 54-49. No. 8 Alcovy has lost twice, once to Miller Grove 39-20 in a rematch of a AAAA semifinal game from last season.