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FAB 5 POLL: Worth County boys, Pelham girls stay No. 1

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Hillary Williams (left) and the Pelham Lady Hornets remain the top girls team in the Fab 5 Basketball Poll. (Staff Photo: Tim Morse)

Another week and another shakeup on the boys side of The Herald’s Fab 5 Basketball Poll. Cairo’s 51-48 upset of former No. 2 Crisp County sent the Cougars tumbling out of the poll.

Worth County continues to hold the No. 1 spot for the second straight week, while Westover moved up a spot to No. 2. The two teams meet tonight in Sylvester in a key Region 1-AAAA showdown. If the Rams win, they will clinch the regular-season title and the top seed in the region tournament next week.

Randolph-Clay, which has won nine straight, and Calhoun County, which has a nice winning streak at six games, each moved up a spot to No. 3 and No. 4, respectively.

The newcomer on the boys side is Pelham, which is long overdue for its first appearance in the weekly poll. The Hornets, who had been knocking on the poll’s door for more than a month, move in at No. 5 after clinching the regular-season Region 1-AA title with a 70-46 victory over Early County on Saturday. The Hornets have won 13 straight.

The girls side of the Poll remains unchanged. Pelham, which has won 20 straight and also has clinched the regular-season Region 1-AA title, remains the top team.

Monroe is second, while Westover is No. 3.

Randolph-Clay maintains its hold on the fourth spot, while Crisp County remains at No. 5.

With one week left in the regular season, the final Fab 5 Poll next week could see some big changes. Worth County could make a big splash if the Rams can beat Westover tonight.

Worth County was severely tested by Dougherty last Friday but found a way to prevail.

“Every night in this region, you’ve got to be ready to play,” Davis said. “You can’t go by the records.”

Randolph-Clay and Calhoun County are on a collision course in their subregion. They meet Saturday night in another key game.

Pelham’s boys are in a good position heading into the region tournament. However, coach Laron Smith wants this season to be a special one.

“These guys have to finish the drill,” Smith said. “We have six seniors on this team. I told them after this year, you don’t get another chance. Once the story is written, you don’t get a chance to rewrite it.”

The Pelham Lady Hornets are writing their historic run — an unbeaten record with three games left, the regular-season Region 1-AA title and the top seed in the region tournament. The girls program last won a state title in 1997. They hope 2014 brings another one.

“We’ve still got three games left (in the regular season),” Pelham’s Destiny Thomas said. “We’re not overlooking anybody.”

While Monroe’s and Randolph-Clay’s girls teams look to end their seasons strong, Westover and Crisp County face a huge week. Last week’s inclement weather postponed the Westover-Crisp County matchup, moving it to Wednesday night.

Westover trails Crisp County by one game in the region standings.

Herald Fab 5 Basketball Polls

BOYS:

1) Worth County………………19-4

2) Westover…………..………..15-5

3) Randolph-Clay………………18-3

4) Calhoun County……………..20-1

5) Pelham……………………….17-3

GIRLS:

1) Pelham……………………..20-0

2) Monroe…………………….18-4

3) Westover…………………..17-4

4) Randolph-Clay…………….17-3

5) Crisp County………………12-9

Albany Herald Fab 5 High School Basketball Poll

BOYS

1) Worth County (19-4) – The Rams went 3-0 last week with wins over Albany, Dougherty and avenged an earlier season loss to Houston County on Saturday. They can clinch the regular-season Region 1-AAAA title tonight with a win over Westover.

Next: vs. Westover, 7:30 p.m., today

2) Westover (15-5) – The Patriots took care of business in their one game this week, a 50-40 victory over Cairo. No team in the area has a tougher week than the Patriots, who play at Worth County on Tuesday and against Crisp County in a makeup game on Wednesday.

Next: at Worth County, 7:30 p.m., today

3) Randolph-Clay (18-3) – The Red Devils have won nine straight. They end their season with a brutal week consisting of Monroe and Webster County before visiting Calhoun County on Saturday.

Next: vs. Monroe, 7:30 p.m., today

4) Calhoun County (20-1) – The Cougars have amassed six straight wins, including a rout of Quitman County on Friday night.

Next: at Stewart County, 7:30 p.m., Friday

5) Pelham (17-3) – The Hornets have the longest current winning streak in Southwest Georgia in boys play at 13 straight.

Next: vs. Fitzgerald, 7:30 p.m., today

GIRLS

1) Pelham (20-0) – The only drama left in this regular-season is to see if Pelham can finish the season unbeaten. They have three games left after clinching the regular-season Region 1-AA title on Saturday.

Next: vs. Fitzgerald, 6 p.m., today

2) Monroe (18-4) – The Lady Tornadoes have won 10 straight and hope to keep their momentum going into the final week of the regular season.

Next: at Randolph-Clay, 6 p.m., today

3) Westover (17-4) – The Lady Patriots hope to finish the season strong and earn the No. 2 seed in next week’s region tournament. They have a tough week with games against Worth County, Crisp County and Dougherty.

Next: at Worth County, 6 p.m., today

4) Randolph-Clay (17-3) – The Lady Red Devils have won five straight and look to finish the season strong this week.

Next: vs. Monroe, 6 p.m., today

5) Crisp County (12-9) – A big week for the Lady Cougars, who need to beat Westover and Americus-Sumter to clinch the No. 2 seed in next week’s Region 1-AAAA Tournament.

Next: at Northside-Warner Robins, 6 p.m., today