AAAAAA basketball blog: Upsets common in boys rankings … Girls power at North Gwinnett, Parkview … Update on #1 Tift … North Cobb-Hillgrove

Six of the Top 10 boys teams in AAAAAA lost to unranked teams last week.

This week, it’s happened only once, but it’s early.

On Tuesday, Alcovy (6-11) beat first-place Luella (13-5) in a Region 2 game 60-51. But Luella wasn’t ranked, so that one count. Just thought you’d want to know.

The real one was Lassiter’s 67-51 win over No. 9 Roswell. Lassiter is 4-13. Roswell is 11-6. is Lassiter (4-13).

‘’Inexplicable the egg we laid on Tuesday night,’’ Roswell coach Ty Phillips said in an e-mail on Thursday. “Lassiter has some key pieces back and is much better than their record, so they get tons of credit for playing harder than us. At least now the distraction of being ranked won’t be a problem.’’

Maybe the rankings could be a little better, but it sure seems like there’s some nice parity this season. No mega teams that we’ve seen from Milton, Wheeler or Norcross this year.

A few more observations in Class AAAAAA –

- North Gwinnett’s girls are pretty good. They’re 16-0 with national rankings, but more important was the team’s 64-49 victory over No. 2 Norcross on Tuesday. Norcross won state titles in 2010 and 2011, has the state’s top player in Naismith Award finalist Diamond DeShields and had beaten North Gwinnett four straight times.  Baylee Rexing, one of six Division I recruits on North Gwinnett’s roster, had a big night, scoring 16 points – matching DeShields’ total. A 5-2 junior, Rexing has committed to Ole Miss. North Gwinnett seniors Lexie Brown (signed with Maryland) and Peyton Whitted (Penn State) are ranked among the top 60 seniors nationally by ESPN. Norcross comes to North Gwinnett on Wednesday for a rematch.

- Parkview’s girls aren’t bad, either. Check out this quick story on them posted on Thursday. This is a team that’s won 51 straight regular-season games but won’t get full respect until it goes a little further in the state playoffs. Parkview was knocked out by Norcross last season. This year, Parkview would face Norcross in the second round if Parkview is No. 1 and Norcross is No. 2 out of their regions. That’s where they sit at the moment.

- Powder Springs is a good place to watch basketball Friday with four ranked teams on the docket. North Cobb (No. 2 boys, No. 7 girls) are playing at Hillgrove (No. 7 boys, No. 8 girls). Both of North Cobb’s teams and Hillgrove’s girls made the state quarterfinals or better last season. The AJC’s Chip Saye will be there, while David Purdum covers the Chattahoochee-Alpharetta boys game. Note  that covers at least four games every Tuesday and Friday this season.

- Brannen Greene of No. 1 Tift County scored 37 points in Tift’s 87-77 victory over Westover, the No. 8 team in AAAA, on Tuesday.. The Albany Herald reported that Greene made six 3-point shots and five dunks. Westover’s T.J. Cromer, a former Tift player, scored 30 for Westover. ‘’I don’t foresee many close games in the future,’’ Greene told the newspaper, ‘’so having a close game will help us.’’

12 comments Add your comment

Hubert Green

January 17th, 2013
6:48 pm

Tift had a couple of close games at the City of Palms, both losses. But it’s pretty bare south of Atlanta this year, especially without the Savannah schools in AAAAAA. As it has been the past several years, teams from the North will go thru a very difficult draw to get to the Finals. Why on earth don’t they crossover like football? The only difference this year is that Norcross and Wheeler don’t have to worry about Milton as they have the past four years. And Milton was loaded with no senior starters.


January 17th, 2013
10:10 pm

When will the investigation into Tift Co. be released? Is there any truth into their recruiting scandal by Dr. Holland?


January 17th, 2013
11:42 pm

Brannen Greene just gave Brunswick, Coffee and Valdosta bulletin board material!!


January 18th, 2013
9:16 am

Cant wait for the “superstar” Greene to visit Valdosta and the Thrilla Dome. His little
world gonna get rocked.

Maybe his teammates might remind him what happened last year.

Tift Blue Devils

January 18th, 2013
10:18 am

Wildcats…you should relax. You guys aren’t nearly as big as a threat as you think you are. Last year y’all won by a bucket…lol & that’s without Brannen Greene in the lineup. We returned all of our starters with the addition of Greene so don’t be big-headed on history. @SouthGaFan The school told us there was no evidence of a scandal even though we know it’s kind of obvious he was recruited, it just can’t be proved, but who knows maybe he came here on his own to play along side Tadric.


January 18th, 2013
1:16 pm

Valdosta hasn’t played anyone worth mentioning except maybe Archer and have lost to some teams that they shouldn’t have. Tift has beaten everyone the should no matter the end score. But Feb 1 will settle this argument.

Savannah hoopers

January 18th, 2013
2:50 pm

Dont have a dawg in this fight. I a Savannah High person. We lost to Tift Co. It was a good game we lost by team personally I think they got a few call, but that dont take away the fact they beat us. Good game Tift. I would love to see Tift and Valdosta. We all know about Greene and Jackson, I would like to see that point guard I call him The Truth and number 22 with that nice jumper play each other. Wish we could did that one on ESPN.

Savannah hoopers

January 18th, 2013
2:52 pm

We lost by 10 sorry at work


January 18th, 2013
11:27 pm

Styles make fights. The Tift- Valdosta game is a contrast of styles. Tift is the big hard hitting bully and Valdosta is the quick handed young kid. On paper Tift should win by 20 plus. However, Valdosta is the team with nothing to lose. These two teams have won the last 4 Region1 titles. Valdosta in 2009, 2012 / Tift in 2010,2011. I see this game coming down to can Valdosta rebound and defend the post and can Tift handle Valdosta’s press and keep up with Valdosta’s speed?


January 18th, 2013
11:37 pm

Tifton may be the best team in the state and may very well win the state title. Im just proud of my hometown Wildcats for even being in the conversation with Tifton. We have a bunch of homegrown kids that all play multiple sports in high school. They play with that Wildcat spirit!!!! No Div.I players, No stealing players from the next door county or any All-American transfers. They are just a bunch of local kids that grew up together and believe in their coach and each other!!!!!

@ Tift Blue Devils – Valdosta won 2 of 3 from Tift last year and very well should’ve won all three!!! Tift is good, but not unbeatable. Brannen Greene is good, but he aint nowhere near the next Lebron James or Kevin Durrant!!!!!!

Proud Panther

January 19th, 2013
12:59 am

Langston Hughes is currently 12 wins 2 losses overall & 4 wins-0 losses in the region . They’ve won against Westlake & Douglas County Girls basketball teams this season. They haven’t lost a game at home yet & are on a 7 game winning streak. Go Panthers!


January 20th, 2013
11:50 am

I told everyone that Brannen Greenes coments would be bulletin board material for COFFEE, BRUNSWICK and VALDOSTA. Tift still has to go to BRUNSWICK and VALDOSTA. Lke I said, Tift is good, but not unbeatable. Tift will have a very difficult game against St. Anthonys of New Jersey. I look for them to lose by double digits.