Herald Super 6er and Pelham star Briunna Freeman is averaging 19.5 points per game this season for the Lady Hornets, who have started the season with 15 straight wins. (Herald file photo)
HERALD FAB 5 BASKETBALL POLLS
1) Seminole County.......13-1
2) Westover ……………….13-3
3) Crisp County ……………9-7
4) Worth County ……….13-4
5) Mitchell County……….13-4
For the first time since the opening two weeks of the season, The Herald’s Fab 5 Polls remain unchanged at the top.
The Seminole County boys and Pelham girls made sure of that.
The top-ranked teams in Southwest Georgia have won a combined 23 straight games and have done so in convincing fashion with just two of those wins by fewer than 10 points. The Indians (13-1) rolled to easy wins against Terrell County and Miller County last week, while the Lady Hornets (15-0) crushed Early County, Brooks County and Cairo.
There are just eight games left on Pelham’s schedule, and the Lady Hornets have already beaten each of those teams by double digits — so an undefeated Pelham team hosting the Region 1-AA tournament next month is looking more like a probability than a possibility.
“We are taking it one game at a time and just trying to get better each game,” Pelham coach Antonia Tookes said. “Hopefully we can keep this streak going.”
The Indians’ only loss was a two-point setback to Lee County on Dec. 17. Since then, Seminole County has rattled off eight straight victories and is the No. 1-ranked public school in the GHSA’s Class A power rankings. The Indians, however, could be tested Saturday by Calhoun County, which suffered its first loss of the season Friday to drop out of the Fab 5 Poll but could jump right back in with an upset victory against Seminole County.
Following Seminole County in the boys poll are Westover (13-3), Crisp County (9-7), Worth County (13-4) and Randolph-Clay (13-3). At 12-3 and with eight straight wins, the Pelham boys are on the bubble and ready to break into the Fab 5 Poll for the first time this season.
Westover moved up from No. 3 to No. 2 thanks to Crisp County’s overtime win against Worth County, which dropped from No. 2 to No. 4. Crisp County, which was unranked last week, jumped all the way to No. 3 with the road win.
The Cougars, enjoying their highest ranking this season, are just 9-7 overall, but have won five of six and have victories against Westover and Worth County. At 6-3 in Region 1-AAAA, Crisp is just a half-game behind Westover and Worth in the region standings.
Topping off the boys poll is No. 5 Randolph-Clay, which routed previous No. 4 Calhoun County on Friday, handing the Cougars their first loss of the season. The Red Devils and Cougars will play again on Feb. 8 in the final game of the regular season.
In the girls poll, Monroe and Westover stayed No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, with a pair of 2-0 records last week, while Randolph-Clay moved up one spot to No. 4, taking the place of Dougherty, which dropped from the Fab 5 Poll for the first time this season after a stunning loss to Americus-Sumter.
Coming in at No. 5 is Mitchell County, which has won six straight and has only lost this year to Pelham, Randolph-Clay and Valdosta.
ALBANY HERALD FAB 5 BASKETBALL POLLS
1) Seminole County (13-1) — The Indians have won eight straight since a two-point loss to Lee County on Dec. 17 and no one has even been close to slowing their momentum.
Next: at Baker County, 7:30 p.m., today
2) Westover (13-3) — The Patriots have won nine of their last 10 games and are tied with Worth County on top of the Region 1-AAAA standings.
Next: vs. Americus-Sumter, 7:30 p.m., today
3) Crisp County (9-7) — The Cougars might barely be above .500, but they have wins against Worth County and Westover, have won five of their last six and are a half of a game out of first place in the Region 1-AAAA standings.
Next: vs. Dougherty, 7:30 p.m., today
4) Worth County (13-4) — The Rams, who once held the No. 1 spot for two straight weeks, have lost two of their last three — and both of the losses were at home.
Next: vs. Cairo, 7:30 p.m., today
5) Randolph Clay (13-3) — The Red Devils are back in the poll after winning nine of their last 10, including a victory Friday against then-unbeaten Calhoun County.
Next: at Webster County, 7:30 p.m., today
1) Pelham (15-0) — Can anybody beat the 2013-14 Lady Hornets? At this point, it isn’t looking like it. They are winning games by an average of 36 points after Saturday’s 73-38 blowout of Cairo.
Next: vs. Baker County, 6 p.m., today
2) Monroe (15-4) — The Lady Tornadoes are two wins from clinching the Region 1-AAAA title and have won seven in a row since dropping four straight over the holidays. They could clinch Saturday at Crisp County.
Next: vs. Dougherty (at Darton State), 4:15 p.m., Friday
3) Westover (14-4) — The Lady Patriots, whose only blemish in the last six games was a five-point loss to Monroe, control their own destiny for a No. 2 seed in the region tournament and automatic state tournament bid.
Next: vs. Americus-Sumter, 6 p.m., today
4) Randolph-Clay (12-3) — The Lady Red Devils lost Monday to the No. 2-ranked team in all of Class AAAA but can bounce back today vs. 5-11 Webster County.
Next: at Webster County, 6 p.m., today
5) Mitchell County (13-4) — With six straight wins, the Lady Eagles return to the poll but could be challenged today by a Lee County team that is playing well and is 10-5 overall.
Next: at Lee County, 6 p.m., today