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South Georgia Tech's men's, women's hoops teams head to break as two of hottest teams in JUCO ranks

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

AMERICUS -- Go ahead and enjoy the holidays South Georgia Tech's men's and women's basketball teams.

You've earned it.

The men's program is 11-2 after starting the season 6-0, while the women's team has been even better: They're not only unbeaten at 13-0, they're ranked No. 8 in the nation in the latest NJCAA poll released Tuesday.

"No. 8 in the country? How about that," Jets coach Steven Wright said Thursday of the women's team as his men's team, which isn't ranked in the Top 25 nationally but receiving votes after winning their last five games in a row, took off for the Christmas break. "I think it's the best start in the history for either program."

Well, almost.

The men's team, before Wright got here five years ago, started 16-1 in 2003-04 and ascended to No. 15 in the nation, but Wright's the only coach to ever take the team to NJCAA nationals, which he did a year ago when he was also named the region Coach of the Year.

As for the women? Well, this is easily their best start in school history since the program was formed in 2004.

The Lady Jets, led by coach Brandan Harrell -- who's been with the team since its inception -- are beating opponents by an average of 16 points and have only been tested once so far this season: a 59-56 road win at traditional national power Chipola (Fla.).

"It's been a great season for both of us so far," said Wright, whose team won't play again until Jan. 5 when it hosts Middle Georgia Tech, while the women return to action Jan. 2 in the South Georgia Tech Classic in Americus against St. Petersburg (Fla.)

The men's team is currently led by Demario Fountain, who is tops in scoring (15.8 ppg) and assists (29), while David Wagner is close behind, averaging 10 points a game, to go along with a team-high 56 rebounds and 7 blocks and 8 steals. Khiry White leads all Jets with 27 steals.

Ophelia McMath leads the Jady Jets in scoring (20 ppg.) and rebounding (11 a game), while Shontae McCall is right behind her with 10.25 rebounds a game.