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GHSA/GISA STATE TOURNAMENT ROUNDUP: Rutland ends Herald No. 1 Monroe boys’ season in Sweet 16; R-C boys, Pelham girls moving on after huge road wins

MACON — Monroe thought it had shaken its playoff curse by getting out of the first round earlier this week.

Now, the hump seems to be Round 2.

The Herald No. 1 Tornadoes, who came into state with just four losses on the season, were dropped out of the GHSA Class AAAA state tournament Saturday night by Rutland, 64-58, on the road.

Herald Super 6er and Division I prospect Jabari McGhee, who Rutland was admittedly very worried about coming into the game, was held to just nine points.

Much of that had to do with the suffocating defense of Rutland’s Dallas Smith, who came into the contest with a game plan to stop McGhee, who was six inches taller and 40 pounds heavier than the Monroe superstar.

“I was expecting him to drive on me,” said Smith, who scored a team-high 17 points. “I thought he’d jump over me. I put my mind to guarding him. I wanted to keep him from going to the goal and let him shoot the jump shot.”

Darrien Anderson paced Monroe with 20 points, while Cortez Banks had 12.

Rutland held a 53-52 lead with four minutes remaining when Smith touch-passed an assist to Jalen Kirkland who converted a layup. On the ensuing Monroe possession, Smith deflected and entry pass intended for McGhee. Rutland missed a 3-point shot, but Smith rebounded the miss to put the Hurricanes up 57-52 — and they never looked back.

Monroe led, 27-23, at halftime after scoring five points in the final 15 seconds of both the first and second quarters.

Anderson, a senior guard, scored 17 points in the third quarter. He made three 3-pointers and did not miss from the field or the foul line.

But it wasn’t enough.

Monroe finishes 22-4.

Attempts by The Herald to reach Monroe coach Marquis Davis were unsuccessful.


GHSA Class A boys: Randolph-Clay pulls upset

HAWKINSVILLE — Randolph-Clay’s Corey Brown has been told all year his breakout moment was coming.

It happened Saturday night.

Brown scored a game-high 17 points — including five 3s — to pace the Class A, No. 13 seed Red Devils in the big road upset of No. 4 seed Hawkinsville in the first round of the state playoffs, 62-53.

“Man, Corey had such a good night. It was ridiculous. He was on fire,” R-C first-year boys coach Michael Hoffpauir said. “We’ve been pushing him all year to let it rip, and his big night showed up at just the right time. He hadn’t shot like that all year.”

Cornelius Bennett added 15 points, Ryan Wiggins added 10 and Herald Super 6er Gary McCrae was held somewhat in check with 12.

But then again, that was all part of the strategy, said Hoffpauir.

“Gary had a good night, even if all he had was 12. He was getting guys involved and we’ve been pushing all year for more than just him to get into double figures — and that’s what happened Saturday,” Hoffpauir said. “It was just a complete game from everyone.”

The Red Devils (17-11) now advance to face the winner of Saturday’s game between No. 5 seed Wilkinson County and No. 12 Treutlen.

GHSA Class AA girls: Pelham back in Elite 8

MCINTOSH — Looking to get back to the Elite 8, Pelham left no doubt Saturday night that — despite being a No. 2 seed — they’re one of the most dangerous teams in the state.

The Lady Hornets (26-4), who lost in overtime to Thomasville last week in the region finals and had to settle for a No. 2 seed, crushed No. 1 seed McIntosh Academy on Saturday, 63-46, in the Sweet 16 of the Class AA tournament.

“We knew it was going to be tough with a hostile environment, but we knew if we brought our A-game, we’d be fine,” said Pelham third-year coach Antonia Tookes, who has turned the program upside down and reached the state playoffs three straight seasons. “We just played hard from the beginning and never gave up.”

Herald Super 6er Briunna Freeman led the way with 23 points, followed by 20 from Hillary Williams and 15 from Timbreanna Hudson.

Pelham now must hit the road and do it again, this time taking on Region 3, No. 1 Laney on Tuesday.


Terrell Academy boys eliminated in GISA Class AA Elite 8, 58-47

MACON — Terrell Academy’s bounce-back season finally came to an end in Saturday’s GISA Class AA Elite 8, where the Eagles lost to First Presbyterian Christian, 58-47.

One year after winning just two games, Terrell Academy finished the season 13-13 overall and gave First Presbyterian all it could handle.

After falling behind by 16 points early in the second half, the Eagles cut First Presbyterian’s lead to single digits midway through the fourth quarter but couldn’t overtake the state’s No. 1 team in GISA Class AA.

Raleigh Carlson led Terrell Academy with 17 points, while Conor Walsh scored 12 and Alan Stewart added 11. Caleb Waters, a four-year member of the TAE basketball team, is the only senior for the Eagles.

Comments

AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Well, Hot Dog, Dmyers, etc., you guys were right. This is the point where the Tornadoes falter. It was a combination of things that kept us from moving forward. We didn't utilize our bench, we needed to use our height, we didn't substitute the right guys at the right time. Our boys didn't seem to play with heart. We missed too many free throws and had too many turnovers. Oh well....

And with that said... It's been a great four year ride with the Nadas. I wanted our seniors to go out on top but it just didn't happen. The season ending is bittersweet for us. Monroe, you had a great season. Keep your heads high.

Mankie (#5), Peanut (#33), Keith (#10) and Kevin (#14) I am going to miss those guys especially. Auntie Dee will always be their #1 Fan. As for Jabari...We are very proud of you and your contribution to basketball at Monroe and to this community. We are looking forward to basketball at a totally different level and expecting some great things for you.

And now for my Alma Mater...Congratulations Patriots! Keep it Moving all the way to the STATE!

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dmyers80 1 year, 5 months ago

well I was actually pulling for Monroe.. I like the because I can tell by the way that they play, they play for each other!!

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Thanks for your support Dmyers. In 4 years, this is the 1st real team I've seen at Monroe. Yes, they played for each other. The 3 teams prior to this year had players who were "ball hogs" and were only interested in being a star.

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HOOPSFORTHESOUL 1 year, 5 months ago

Well it a great win for Pelham, the news in Savannah raved about Williams and the McIntosh team had no answer for her slick ball handling skills and speed. It's being said that Southwest Georgia has good talent . We;ve got to make sure that all the players get noticed. The Randolph-Clay program ,Crisp Academy,Westwood continues to make this case. I only wish the Herald would do more substance reporting instead of polarizing the vaulted Super 5'er status. Diamond of Miller Co might be the leading scorer inthe state. Several young ladies have eclipsed the 100,200 and 2500 career point mark. Coach Jackson has been a mainstay of developing young ladies and winning. Deerfield exceeded expectations.McCoy of Early had a great year as well.Monroe is to be a winner for awhile. What happen to Albany High girls they continue to fall from the scene.Davis at Lee is a outstanding coach tht went into a hostile situation and begun to teach winning basketball to Lee County girls.. At the end of the day who's helping these kids in college as basketball players and teaching them to be successful in life.Has the Herald ever done a where are they now of recent graduating Super 6'ers and how many went on to college.???

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Well I think you just about covered Southwest GA. lol

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The_Dude 1 year, 5 months ago

You post the same thing every time. Diamond of Miller Co. isn't playing anymore because they couldn't beat anybody with a pulse. Please tell us which young lady eclipsed the 2500 point mark? Southwest Georgia has always had good talent, but how many finish? Congrats to the teams still in it, but for once let's see who can close the deal.

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dmyers80 1 year, 5 months ago

Dont forget about R-C girls... their starting 3 gaurds have combined for 3,000+ points. i think from top to bottom they have the best starting 5 in GA!!

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hotdog 1 year, 5 months ago

Auntie Dee...I really didn't want to be right,but I would be lying if I said I was not surprised by the abrupt ending to Monroe's season....hoopsforthesoul, you have some valid points Davis at Lee not being one of them...can't agree with that,not yet....good luck all Sowega teams

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

I know Hotdog. I was hopeful though.

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MisterEd 1 year, 5 months ago

The Lee County girls already understood how to win, seeing as how they had gone to the playoffs 3 of the 5 years prior to Davis getting there. If Davis is doing such a fantastic job with the girls, explain how they actually went backwards this year in terms of wins, and the underclasssmen on the team have been coached the past 2 years by Davis.

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hotdog 1 year, 5 months ago

6 team region means 2/3 rds of teams go to state....check her last job record....teams she took over win,make state....after other coaches players graduate ,teams lose,number of players in program dwindles

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hotdog 1 year, 5 months ago

6 team region means 2/3 rds of teams go to state....check her last job record....teams she took over win,make state....after other coaches players graduate ,teams lose,number of players in program dwindles....2,4,6,8 Monroe region Westover State

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mrcvsjr 1 year, 5 months ago

I didn't want to be right on my history prediction, but it is what it is. Just wish my Pats could get some of that height the nadas seemingly get year after year. It was a good run for you all, and a great season. Would have love to have seen what Jabari could've done with 2 guards like Kell and T.J. on his team. To all the SOWEGA teams, good luck!!!!!!!!

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Mr. CVSJR, I guess we'll get a glance of that at the All-Star game next month. lol

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bballintruth 1 year, 5 months ago

Well Monroe could not make it to the top this year. They had a good season as they have had one of the top 3 best teams in SWGA in the last 6 years. but no matter how well your team is" stacked". No matter how many D1 prospects you may have on that team, if there isnt a.coach who knows how to use that talent then you will have a team that never seems to make it to.the top. Much success to Monroe b-ball players in whatever your future endeavors maybe.

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dominiquedamac 1 year, 5 months ago

Monroe hasn't won anything when it matters. They are not one of the best teams in the state. You got to win in the tournament and Monroe can't do it. When was the last time Monroe went to the final four? LOL!

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PatAlumni 1 year, 5 months ago

About 3 or 4 years ago. And lost to Lagrange by 1

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dominiquedamac 1 year, 5 months ago

I don't know about that. Monroe hasn't been to the final four since 1998.

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Any team can lose on any given day. Look at how many times WHS lost to Monroe. We acknowledge that Monroe has lost in the 2nd round and that WHS is still in it to win it. However, don't count your chickens before they hatch. Monroe is still one on the best teams in Southwest Georgia.

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PatAlumni 1 year, 5 months ago

And Monroe made it to the final 4 3 or 4 years ago and lost to Lagrange

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dominiquedamac 1 year, 5 months ago

Another thing, can you please tell me the year Monroe had played Lagrange in the final four so I can look it up. My memory is sharp like a knife and I know Monroe did not make it to no final four under Coach Davis.

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dominiquedamac 1 year, 5 months ago

Westover had played in the final four three and four years ago. Monroe was not in the final four in none of those years. Westover was the only Albany's team to play in the final four. The last time, two Albany teams had played in the final four was in 2001.

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HOOPSFORTHESOUL 1 year, 5 months ago

Well you seem to have it all wrong I for one applaud all the players and that's the point made,the articles are redundant, there's so much that could be reported.Besides our world many people rely on the Herald to give information on players from the area. Surely Miller county don't have a strong team but her achievements should not be overlooked. The 3 seniors of Randolph-clay has had a stellar career and winning. Hotdog i understand your view i'm saying after losing Moore whom the previous Lee coach s rode to the end of the world ,now with limited young and limited expierence it's obvious she's molded them into a team that competed,time will tell.Quitman who has a great coach but limited athletes her teams are well coached. Jenkins is no doubt one of the better coaches at Terrell, but she has limited talent but her coaching shows and you can't argue with her success. Mitchell of Crisp Academy has eclisped 2000 pts for one and . Cheeks did a outstanding job this year with youthful team and Jackson at DCCHS also. GOOD LUCKTO ALL SOWEGA TEAM STILL IN THE PLAYOFFS.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 5 months ago

Mahhh Homeeeezzzzzzzzzzz!!!!!! WHAAASSSSSSAAAAAAPPPPPP HOMEEEEEZZZZ?

Y'all like some bassetball? I love me some bassetball. "I gotta bassetball JONES!! A bassetball JONES! A bassetball JONES oh baby woo-oooo-ooo"

Good luck all y'all bassetball playaz. Don't forget to do your homework and take as many AP courses as you can!! Albany High gets awards for AP somethings.

Yo!

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oldster 1 year, 5 months ago

Congratulations to the Monroe basketball team on an outstanding season. I think so many fans who had such high hopes for a state championship are expecting too much. This team , this coach and these kids have worked their tails off and they gave it everything they had and the community should be proud of what they have done and stop whining about what was not accomplished. If you the fans are disappointed about the playoff loss, how do you think the players and coaching staff feel? There is a LOT of competition out there and the Monroe basketball program stood tall and did the school and the community proud.

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AuntieDee 1 year, 5 months ago

Thank You oldster. I agree with you 100%.

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camillaallstars88 1 year, 5 months ago

Pelham Hillary williams you are special and Camilla knew this when you left! As for Monroe good season but yall Have No business in AAAA that's the problem get your School Board right same with AHS DCCHS, Westover go be home soon. To many AAAA schools in that 1 city You guys are spreading your ath's VERY THIN to be screaming STATE. Two schools Albany or get left in the past far as State Championships go. 2 AAAAAA schools

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mrcvsjr 1 year, 5 months ago

I pretty much figured out what you were trying to say. Fact: Westover and Monroe have enough students to be AAAA. Dougherty and Albany decided to play up in classification because there were no local team who would've been in AAA for them to economically work with travel and such. That is why there are 4 teams in Albany who are AAAA. For once that is not the school system fault. Those were decisions made by the Athletic Directors of both schools for the best interests of there schools. The same as with Valdosta playing up in AAAAAA instead of AAAAA, because it's in the best interests of there school and there tradition. Next time use Rosetta Stone before posting. Thanks.

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Nappo 1 year, 5 months ago

Pat Alumni, Monroe did not make it to the final four when they lost to Lagrange 4 years ago, that was the 2nd round as well.

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dominiquedamac 1 year, 5 months ago

I knew I was right! Monroe hasn't been to a final four since 1998.

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HOOPSFORTHESOUL 1 year, 5 months ago

Is the Mitchell County Coach from a school Hitler of Motivation? I just loked at the news and the coach is belittling the Randolph-Clay team making derogatory remarks a bout their conditioning and saying they're not that good. Are you serious is that why their program have so many discipline issues every year and the sportsmanship is non-existence among the teams there? Why would you publicly do that? Last I heard your staff came out dressed for the prom and got ran out of the gym by the same team. Not only that game but the previous game as well. Maybe she needs to go to etiquette school given by Cheeks and Jackson and take some public relations classes.Is this a personal attack towards the R-C coach because you're only fueling animosity among the kids. How about "we look forward to the rematch and our kids feel they can win if we play as a team and give a %100" or believe we have a chance against the Red Devils even though we're the underdog. DRAMA MAMAS

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GetBuckets 1 year, 5 months ago

#1 Guard from Seminole County is the best player in the Region , HANDS DOWN !!!! kid knows what it takes to win and lead his team in an unselfish way

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