Total Sports Coverage is pleased to announce it will webcast its first-ever high school state championship game of any kind in any state. The independent network will provide a LIVE audio stream only webcast of the Georgia GHSA Class 7A Boys basketball state championship game between the McEachern Indians and Meadowcreek Mustangs.
Meadowcreek (26-5) is the defending 7A state champion while McEachern (31-0) is ranked as the No.1 team in the nation in the Max Preps Xcellent 25 and in the top 5 of other respected national polls.
Pregame coverage begins at 6:30pm EST with tip-off approxiamatley scheduled for 7:00pm EST from the Macon Coliseum in Macon, GA. The announcing team of Joel Hillsman and Lewis Preston will call the play-by-play action.
Hillsman is in his 10th season broadcasting high school athletics in Georgia, Florida, South Carolina and Alabama and has announced for various networks including being the lead play-by-play announcer for SUVTV’s extensive coverage of grassroots and high school basketball and Total Sports Coverage. Hillsman, a member and co-host of the Georgia Hoop Circle, has been apart of the announcing team for the basketball championships in Georgia the previous two years however this will mark the first time he will be the play-by-play announcer for a Georgia basketball championship game in his career.
Preston, also a member of the Georgia Hoop Circle, is a former NCAA head coach at Kennesaw State and also served as an assistant coach at Coastal Carolina, Notre Dame, Florida and Penn State during his career. While at Florida, Preston was apart of the 2006-2007 National Championship team coaching staff under former head coach and current Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan. Preston is in his second season of announcing high school basketball’s.
The 2018-2019 Georgia GHSA high school basketball championships are underway in Macon, Georgia this week. Here are some updates on the action so far.
In Class 3A Morgan County beat region rival Hart County for a third time this season 68-54 to win the State Championship. Tyrin Lawrence led Morgan County in scoring and rebound with a massive 19-point 18-rebound effort. Stevin Greene finished with 14 points and 4 assists while Austin Peay commit Alec Woodard tallied 13 points and 5 assist. Phil Crawford scored 11 points for the boys from Madison, GA. Rex McCord fouled out after a 19-point effort to lead Hart County. Shone Webb put in 11 points and dropped off 5 assist and Tyrese Morrison scored 10 points for Hart County.
In Class 2A boys Therrell overcame poor free throw shooting to hold of Vidalia 51-49. Therrell went 13-of-26 from the foul line, that and perimeter shooting was a concern all season however in the end as it they have all season long they withstood it to come out on top. Zyquon Morton put in a game-high 19 points while Robbie Armbrester and Ramon Son each finished with 10. Ra’Sean Fredrick finished with 8 points for the Panthers. Toriun Mull led Vidalia with 14 points. Vidalia, who lost in the finals for the second consecutive season received 10 points each from Anthony Jones and Mark Wardaw.
In Class 1A-Private Boys state title went to St. Francis after they defeated Eagles Landing Christian Academy 67-63. Xavier commit Dwon Odom finished with a game-high 28 points for the Knights. Jasuan Holt finished with 16 points and nine rebounds for the Knights who shot 51% from the field in the victory. Eagles landing Christian Academy was led by KJ Jones’ 17 points followed by 16 points from Felix Uadaile. College of Charleston-commit Trevon Reddish finished his career with 15 points 9 rebounds and 9 assists.
In Class 1A Public Calhoun County finished of an undefeated 32-0 season with a 69-67 victory over Treutlen, it was the Cougars second victory over Treutlen this season. Quanderious Powell made the game-winning layup as time expired to give Calhoun County it’s fourth title in program history. James Byrd 17 Arkavias Lovett 15 Kameron Jordan 14 led Truetlen (30-2) in the loss.
Mitch Ganote scored 31 points as Lambert defeated Chamblee 82-70. Thomas Hickey finished with 17, Braxton Beaty had 11 while Colin Granger had 11 for Lambetr. Chamblee was led by Rodney Smith and Zachery Mackson each finished with 18 points.
Sprayberry’s Justin Day (11 points) hit a three-pointer with 5.5 seconds remaining to give the Yellow Jackets a 59-56 region win over South Cobb. UGA head coach Tom Crean and Kennesaw State head coach Al Skinner were in attendance to watch Sparyberry’s DJ Patrick. Patrick finished with 10 points and 10+ rebounds in the victory. Saigon Kitt led Sparayberry with 17 points on the strength of four three-pointers. Freshman Zoko Littleton led South Cobb with 12 points off the bench while Jaiden Diamond had 11 and Teddy James had 10.
Kam Oyola hit the game-winning field goal with 5 seconds remaining to left Peachtree Ridge 44-42 over Mill Creek. Oyola finished with 13 points for the Lions. Kendall Latney finished with 8 points for Mill Creek.
Eric Jones scored 16 points as Mountain View defeated Duluth 55-52. The Bears received 12 points from Cam Rowland and nine points each from Nahiem Alleyne and Malik Wilson. Duluth was led by Trent Gordon’s 17 points.
Wytavis Searcy scored the game-winning bucket to beat the buzzer lifting Southwest Dekalb over Lithonia 56-55 in a heated region 6-5A battle.
Discovery win it’s second straight game with a 64-52 win over North Gwinnett. Jaden Walker continued his stellar play of late with 21 points, 6 rebound and 4 assist while Leslie Nkereuwem tallied 14 points and 16 rebounds for the Titans.
Norcross defeated region foe Brookwood 69-51 on the road.
Morgan County defeated Franklin County 62-46 behind 24 points from Alec Woodard. Nolan Causwell scored 12 for the Bulldogs who were playing without Tyrin Lawrence.
Scores and Notes from boys basketball games of interest in Georgia: Nov. 28th 2018
Cedar Shoals (1-2) picked up their first win of the 2018-19 season with a 79-54 road win at Madison County. Quincy Canty led the Jaguars in scoring with 26 points and 8 rebounds. Tyler Johnson chipped in a season-high 22 points while snatching seven rebounds. Demterius Glenn added 13 points. Cedar Shoals will face Archer and Lanier to conclude the week.
Brunswick moved to 3-0 with a 75-40 win over Ware County. Joyful Hawkins led the Pirates with 14 points and 8 rebounds while Kelan Walker had 12 points and 6 rebounds to go with nine points and six assist from Sharrod Ross.
Sharife Cooper scored 21 points as McEachern remained undefeated with an 82-55 region victory over North Paulding.
Clarke Central held off Gainesville 83-81 in a non-region game.
Defending 7A champion Meadowcreek got back on the winning side with a 61-43 region victory over Lakeside-Dekalb.
Chance Moore continues his prolific start at Holy Innocents with 32 points 10 rebounds and 5 assist in a 107-75 win over Spalding.
Duluth withstood a late first half push by Dacula and pulled away in the thrid quarter for a 78-57 victory. Devin Evans led the Wildcats with 21 points and 10 rebounds to go with three assist. Kendall Peabody had 15 points 5 rebound and 4 assist, Jordan Blue stuffed the box score with 14 points 4 rebounds 8 assists and 2 steals while Trent Gordon had 14 points and 8 rebounds. Bryce Wilson (14), Brenden Tucker (13) and Mehkail Bethea (11) led Dacula.
East Coweta’s Fernandez Jones tallied 25 points, 4 assists and 4 steals in a 83-77 victory over Starr’s Mill. Chris Youngblood added 21 points 8 rebounds and two steals for East Coweta.
Evan Hurst led Milton with 18 points in their 67-63 victory over Discovery. Malachi Martin put up 15 points and 12 rebounds while Donaven Mitchell filled the boxscore with 15 points 8 rebounds 4 assist and 5 steals for Milton.
Elbert County opened its season with a 79-48 win over Washington-Wilkes. AJ James led the Blue Devils with 30 points and 13 rebounds while Ty Hill scored 17 in the win.
The Georgia Class 5A state runner-up Cedar Shoals Jaguars are gearing up for next season as the summer schedule begins. The Jaguars competed in a team camp at North Oconee high school over the weekend and will compete in the Miller Grove Shot Clock league later this month as a play date participate against Mays, Stephenson, defending 6A champion Langston Hughes, Heritage-Conyers, Rockdale, Meadowcreek, Tucker and Forest Park beginning June 12th.
Cedar Shoals must replace seven rotation seniors from last seasons team including 5A player of the year and leading scorer Phlandrous Fleming (Charleston Southern). That core unit led the Jaguars to three consecutive trips to the semifinals the past three seasons including the runner-up finish last season.
Rising seniors Jai’vanni McDavid, Darien Appling and Keivasiay Ball along with sophomore Jaden Williams have been tasked with engineering the sustaining of the programs recent success under head coach L’Dreco Thomas. The group has help as the Jaguars have added a pair of sophomore transfers in Quincy Canty and Jalen Jackson.
Quincy Canty, a 6’5 forward who was an All-Region 8-1A Private selection last season, comes over from neighboring private school Athens Christian. Canty led the Eagles in scoring while averaging a double-double and guided the Eagles to a quarterfinal finish last season in 1A Private. Canty was not with the team this past weekend as he was participating in the Crossroads Elite Camp in Indianapolis, Indiana, a camp Phlandrous Fleming attended as a sophomore as well. Carter plays travel ball with the EYBL Georgia Stars.
Jalen Jackson, a 6’2 guard, comes over from Lincoln County. Jackson averaged 7 points and 7 rebounds as a freshman last season for the Red Devils. Jackson will also play football for the Jaguars.
The 2nd Annual L’Dreco Thomas Youth Basketball Camp will be held June 26th-29th at Cedar Shoals High School. Registration dates are June 8th (3pm-5pm) and June 15th (4pm-6pm) in front of Turner-Neathery Gymnasium. Walk-up registration will be held on June 26th beginning at 12pm. Last years camp featured over 75 campers attending the four-day camp which features shooting, dribbling, passing, rebounding, defensive and skill development drills with current Jaguar varsity players. Special guest speakers included current University of Georgia basketball players along with other notable guest from around the basketball and Athens community. For more information and registration contact Coach Thomas at 706-546-5375 or via email email@example.com.
Georgia’s four-time defending champion McEachern continues to work on its schedule for the upcoming 2017-18 high school basketball season. The Lady Indians again will play a national schedule with games in Texas, New York, Alabama and Washington D.C.
“We want to play tough competition,” Lady Indian head coach Phyllis Arthur responded when asked about the heavy schedule.
McEachern (26-6; 6-5 OOS last season) has lined up games with Stephenson and Greater Atlanta Christian along with an event at Parkview. The Lady Indians defeated Greater Atlanta Christian 86-55 in one of only six regular season home games and lone non-region home game last season.
Charles Bassey (St. Anthony’s, TX) finished with 35 points and 16 rebounds as the East defeated the West 117-107 in the Underclassmen All-American National Game. The East, coached by former Florida Gator and NBA player Jason Williams, overcame a 15-point deficit behind Bassey’s 23 second-half points.
DJ Jeffries (Olive Branch, MS) finished with 14, Isaac Johnson (American Fork, UT) tallied 12, Matthew Hunt (John Marshall, MN) put in 11, Isaiah Todd (John Marshall, VA) scored 10 while Sharife Cooper (McEachern, GA) finished with 9 points guiding the comeback from his point guard position.
Bassey’s was named the East team MVP.
James Wiseman (Ensworth TN) led the West with 21 points and 13 rebounds and was named the West team MVP. “KyKy” Tandy (University Heights Academy, KY) netted 16, De’Vion Harmon (Guyer, TX) finished with 13 while Isaac Okoro (McEachern, GA) and Xavier Foster (Oskaloosa, IA) each finished with 12. Former Georgia Bulldog and NBA standout Jarvis Hayes coached the West team.
Isaiah Miller (Newton, GA), also known as “Jumping Jack Flash”, won the dunk contest defeating Damien Rosser (Henry County, GA), Alex O’Connell (Milton, GA) and Devan Cambridge (Pro Vision, TX). Dominique Wilkins was one of five judges for the dunk contest which took place between the National and Select games.
In the Select game the West outlasted the East 77-76. The West was led by Marcus Watson (Buford, GA) with 21 points. Watson was named West team MVP. Ebenezer Dowouna (Heritage Christian, GA) tallied 12 while Chase Hunter (Westlake, GA) completed the double-figure scorers for the West with ten.
Kira Lewis (Hazel Green, AL) led the East with 19 points and was name East MVP. Isaac Martin (Wheeler, GA) and Dontae Allen (Pendleton County, KY) each finished with 11 while Isaiah Adams (Paxon, FL) just missed double figures with nine.
Both games featured underclassmen from the classes of 2019 and 2020 meaning all players had completed either thier freshman or sophomore seasons in high school basketball.
Updated: McEachern(26-6) finished ranked No.1 in class 7A but unranked nationally in the Max Preps Xcellent 25 final rankings. Norcross (29-3) finished ranked No.2 in class 7A and No. 22 in the Max Preps Xcellent 25.
Phyllis Arthur was named 7A Coach of the Year and Que Morrison (Georgia) 7A Player of the Year by the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Lindsey Whilby (Texas Tech) was named second team All-State by the AJC.
The McEachern Lady Indians (26-6) extended its state record consecutive state tournament game winning streak to 20 while winning its fourth straight championship in the highest classification with a 75-68 victory over rival Norcross.
Norcross lead 22-15 entering the second quarter and maintained a lead for much of the second quarter. Que Morrison shifted the tenor of the game in the final 30 seconds by scoring the last five points of the half. Morrison connected a three-pointer and then scored on a fast break layup to pull McEachern to within one, 38-37 at halftime. Morrison scored 17 of her 22 first-half points in the second quarter. McEachern’s only lead of the first half was 1-0 in the opening minutes.
Lindsey Whilby connected on a three-pointer as part of a McEachern 8-2 run in the first two minutes of the second half to take a 45-40 lead and would never trailed again. McEachern continued to play at its patented uptempo pace however Norcross would manage to tie it 53-all late in the third quarter on a Taylor Mason bucket. McEachern led 58-55 at the end of three quarters.
The Lady Indians opened the fourth quarter with a small 6-0 spurt to take its biggest lead of the game 64-55 after a pair of Whilby free throws. Reserve Victoria Agyin scored the final 11 points of the game for McEachern as Norcross never got closer than three points the final five minutes of the contest.
“I told them early on if we keep it close to halftime we would win the game because we could outrun them,” McEachern head coach Phyllis Arthur said. “I told them to be patience on offense and that on defense they were beating us man-to-man so we went zone and packed it in the lane and start attacking to make them foul us.”
Morrison finished with a game-high 24 points to go with six rebounds and four assists while Whilby, Agyin and Jewel Smalls each finished with 13 for McEachern. Alexis Burke chipped in seven points and Jasmine Clements finished with four points and game-high 11 rebounds.
Vanessa Blagmon tallied 23 points, Taylor Mason netted 17 and Tionna Carter posted a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
In addition to the championship being McEachern’s fourth straight it was was also their fifth in the last six years.
“Oh my god it’s the best feeling I could ever have,” Arthur exclaimed afterwards. “When nobody else believed we could do it, we even had friends and family members that thought we couldn’t do it because we lost some valuable players, we had girls to step up like Vic (Victoria Agyin) and Alexis Burke, they stepped up and did their jobs, never lost faith and never waivered, they knew from the beginning we could do it.”
McEachern played the latter part of the regular season and all of the state tournament without starters Chanel Wilson, Symone Oliver and Daimaya McPherson who were all out due to season ending injuries suffered in mid-to-late January.
“It says a lot about our program, our younger girls that come in everyday and work hard. I’m just so proud of them, they did a great job and have been working hard all year long,” Arthur responded when asked about the depth of her team in overcoming the injuries. “All of them are stars in my book because they all did what they had to do to win.”
McEachern completed the season on a 15-game winning streak avenging their only in-state loss to Norcross (in season opener). The Lady Indians posted a 6-5 record against out-of-state opponents. Their out-of-state opponents finished with a combined winning percentage of 81%. McEachern defeated Georgia 5A runner-up Southwest DeKalb, 1A Private runner-up Holy Innocents and 3A semifinalist Greater Atlanta Christian in non-region play. The Lady Indians (Cobb County) defeated four Gwinnett County teams in the state tournament (South Gwinnett, Mill Creek, Archer and Norcross).
The McEachern Lady Indians will play in the finals for the fourth consecutive season after defeating Archer 78-58 Saturday at West Georgia University in Carrollton. In the process McEachern extended its record state tournament wins streak at the highest classification to 19.
McEachern (25-6) was led by senior Que Morrision who nearly posted a triple-double with 24 points, 10 assists, 7 rebounds and 5 steals. Lyndsey Whilby tallied 16 points while Jasmine Clements posted a double-double with 11 points and 17 rebounds. Jewell Smalls chipped in 11 points.
The Lady Indians trademark uptempo offense and pressure defense led to a 24-4 advantage in fastbreak points. McEachern also won the battle on the glass 54-32 scoring 25 second chance points in the process.
McEachern seized control of the game with a 28-4 run in the second quarter after Archer took a a nine-point lead 28-19. McEachern went on to win the quarter 30-13 and was never seriously threatened the remainder of the game.
Autumn Newby fell three assists shy of a triple-double with 18 points, 13 rebounds and 7 assists to lead Archer. Linsey Marchese tallied 13 points to go with 5 rebounds.
Archer was eliminated in the state tournament by McEachern for the fourth consecutive year.
McEachern, winners of fourteen in a row, will now turn its attention towards rival Norcross. Norcross (29-2) advanced to the 7A finals with a 37-30 victory over Collins Hill. Vanessa Blagmon tallied 13 points while Taylor Mason netted 11 for the Lady Blue Devils in the victory and will enter finals on an eleven game winning streak. Norcross is ranked tenth nationally in the Max Preps Xcellent 25 and No.1 in all state polls. McEachern is unranked nationally and No.2 in all state polls.
Norcross defeated McEachern 57-53 earlier this season in the Parkview Thanksgiving Tournament. Norcross has not loss to an opponent from Georgia, while the loss to Norcross is McEachern only loss to an opponent from Georgia this season.
McEachern holds a 5-3 series advantage, 2-1 in state championship games, against Norcross since the 2010-11 season. The two programs have combined to win the last seven state championships at the highest classification in Georgia since 2010.
The two powerhouse programs will make it eight state championships combined between the two after Saturday night’s battle at Georgia Tech’s McCamish Pavilion. Will Norcross tie the championship score at four or will McEachern win its fifth in the last six years and take a two-game advantage in the championship score.
No matter who wins both has set a fine example for girls and women’s basketball then, now and going forward.
Cedar Shoals has been knocking on the door of the championship game the last two seasons in the semifinals and it just would not open. Losses of one and two points in the semifinals prevented the Jaguars from playing for a state championship. Saturday at Columbus State University in Columbus, Ga the Jaguars kicked the door down and left no room for making a third straight semifinal loss.
Powerhouse and defending 5A champion Miller Grove has won seven titles in the last eight years were on the other sideline. The Wolverines are under the direction of first-year head coach Rasual Chester however the expectations at Miller Grove are the same, win championships.
George Wilson III put Miller Grove up 7-5 with a three-pointer with just over two minutes remaining in the first quarter, that would be the last time the Wolverines would lead. Cedar Shoals broke off one of their patented runs that never left the game in doubt.
Phlandrous Fleming nailed a three as the first quarter ended to put Cedar Shoals up 14-7. Fleming converted a three-point play to open the second quarter and A.J. Jones dropped in a three-pointer to cap a 15-0 run to give Cedar Shoals a 20-7 lead, the Jaguars never looked back.
“We have been playing a lot better defensively which forces teams to take bad shots and we have been great on the defensive boards which leads to transition buckets and it helps us find our rhythm,” Cedar Shoals head coach L’Dreco Thomas said about making massive runs all season.
Snipe Hall drilled a three to give Cedar Shoals a 42-16 lead in the third quarter that sent the Jaguars on their way to a 59-38 victory. The win is not so much a surprise as is the manner of it and margin of victory.
Fleming finished with a game-high 25 points, Stavion Stevenson scored 15, Hall tallied nine while Jones chipped in seven for Cedar Shoals.
“My staff came up with a great game plan and the players worked the plan to a T,” Thomas said. “(The players) were focused and confident.”
Cedar Shoals (27-4) held Miller Grove (21-9) to a season-low 38 points and held leading scoreer Naquante Hardy (20ppg avg) to a season-low five points. Before losing to Cedar Shoals, Miller Grove had only lost to McEachern (7A semifinalist), Wheeler (7A Sweet 16) and Columbia (5A Sweet 16) from the state of Georgia.
“We knew we had to limit (Hardy’s) scoring opportunities and know where he was at all times,” Thomas said. ” I think switching defenses throughout the game gave them problems. We never let them get in a rhythm and we didn’t give up transition buckets.”
Cedar Shoals earned its first-ever appearance in the state championship for the boys program in school history. The girls program won the 1992 state championship under head coach Charles Turner and last played for a state championship in 1999 (lost to Pope).
Cedar Shoals will play for the 5A championship four miles from its campus at the University of Georgia’s Stegeman Coliseum.
The second-ranked Jaguars will face top-ranked Buford in the finals. Buford (28-2) earned its spot in the finals by defeating Fayette County (23-8) 83-60 behind 25 points and 14 rebounds by sophomore Marcus Watson. Alex Jones finished with 23 points while David Viti added 16 for the Wolves. Buford is the Region 8-5A champion and has not lost this season to a team from Georgia. Buford and Cedar Shoals have been ranked 1-2 since mid-January by multiple polls in the state.
“It’s an honor just to play in the state finals. To play in it in our hometown makes it special,” Thomas said.
It will be the fourth meeting this season between the two teams with Buford winning all three previous meetings. All three were competitive games with the region championship game having the largest margin of victory of the three contests.
Total Sports Coverage carried all three previous Buford-Cedar Shoals contest this season. Each game is available via the following archive links below…
“Buford is a great basketball team. We can’t look at it as they beat us three times, because right now those loses don’t count,” Thomas said. “The winner of this one gets the biggest prize. We will focus on their strength and things that we feel we can be exploited and instill those in our guys and just go play. We can’t worry about the past.”
Two teams that know each other well, one win is all they need to be the Georgia 5A state champ.
One can only think an expected near capacity crowd at Stegeman Coliseum will be ready to bring the funk and the noise in the Wednesday nightcap.
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