Category Archives: Girls Basketball

UGA girls team camp Saturday notes

By Bre Singleton (@bre_singleton)

Head Coach Joni Taylor and the UGA Women’s Basketball program hosted their team camp which started on Friday. Teams in attendance included Class 7A teams Norcross, Collins Hill, Mountain View, Tift County, Rockdale County, Hillgrove, etc. With six courts and two locations, UGA certainly held nothing back.

Tionna Carter’s mother, Jocelyn Penn, played in the WNBA

One of the best players I saw on Saturday is actually a bit of a sleeper. Class of 2019 Tionna Carter of the 7A state runner-up Norcross Blue Devils is one to watch for. As a sophomore, Carter posted a double- double (10 points, 10 rebounds) in the state championship game against the girls basketball powerhouse known as McEachern. The 6’0” forward would prove to be a consistent on Saturday, posting 13 points and 6 rebounds on a Ridge View team out of South Carolina. Carter will look to lead the Blue Devils in the 2017-2018 GHSA season as they attempt to avenge their state championship loss. She’s a player that coaches should absolutely start paying attention to.

Along the same lines, Central-Macon’s Jada Clowers is looking to do some damage in her senior season. Standing at 6’1” Clowers can rebound almost effortlessly. In the two games I saw her in action, she owned the paint, getting easy putbacks. Playing PF/C, she posted eight points and five boards in one game and 11 and ten in the other. As she continues to develop, timing on the defensive end will be huge. She is a presence in the paint but has to make sure she’s getting all ball on her block attempts. Still she swatted several shots, not needing any body contact at all. With some offensive footwork, I think Clowers could prove to be a really solid player at the next level.

Tift County and North Cobb squared off in the afternoon. Azonya Austin of North Cobb had a very productive game from the point guard position. There weren’t many people on the court who could keep up with her. Austin blew by defenders religiously on her way to 18 points. Sydney Soloman also had a solid outing for the Warriors. The 6’0” senior had nine points and 5 rebounds from the 4/5 spot. For Tift County, 5’11” senior Kaysie Harrelson had it going offensively with 10 points. Destiny Johnson wasn’t too far behind with nine, but Tift just didn’t have enough scoring to outlast North Cobb in the end.

Hillgrove played Rockdale County in a 5:00 p.m. slot game. Like North Cobb, Hillgrove had to battle in 7A Region 3 with the likes of McEachern. Against Rockdale County though, the Hawks had it going. Taylor Thompson, a 5’11” senior forward was a beast on the boards for Hillgrove. She put up 11 points and seven rebounds while fellow senior Kierra York added 12 points and six rebounds. Laren VanArsdale, a senior transfer from Whitefield Academy, had seven points and four rebounds from the PG spot to help Hillgrove cruise to a blowout.

Javyn Nicholson

The last game I caught ended up being the best of the day in my opinion. Collins Hill and Colquitt County were in a battle. With the score 24-20 at halftime, this game was destined for a good finish. Coming off of a 23-5 season, Colquitt County gave the team from Suwanee all they could handle. Scoring was plentiful in this one. Za’Nautica Downs lead all scorers with 19 points and each point was spectacular. Diamond Hall added her share, putting up 14 points. Collins Hill has a great nucleus coming back for the 2017-2018 season, lead by non-other than Bria Harmon. She had nine points and four boards for the Eagles. Javyn Nicholson (pictured) was absolutely dominant in the paint pouring in 14 points and pulling 10 boards. Jada Rice, the other half of The Eagles’ 1-2 post punch, had an aggressive nine points and eight rebounds. Collins Hill was able to edge out the Packers 49-46. These two teams will definitely look to make even more noise in 7A than they did last year.

Georgia State girls team camp Top Performers

By Bre Singleton (@bre_singleton)

Georgia State Sharon Baldwin Team Camp Top Performers

Lillian Kennedy

Mountain View: ’18 Lillian Kennedy

​Playing the point/forward spot, Lillian Kennedy was clearly the most athletic player on the court in any given matchup. At about 5’9, Kennedy has the footwork in the paint to finesse her way around many defenders. In a game against Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy, Kennedy had 12 points and 8 boards and sat out most of the fourth quarter. Her length and timing gave offensive players fits all day as Kennedy swatted more than a few shots into the bleachers. A member of the Gwinnett Daily Post All-County Third team, the Mountain View standout expressed interest from GSU, UNC Asheville, Stony Brook and others.

Mountain View: ’19 Kamryn Collins

​Kamryn Collins is an absolute beast on the boards for the Bears and cleaning up the paint was her specialty on Wednesday. Still young and raw, Collins has a nose for the ball and rebounding comes naturally. In the early matchup with McEachern, Collins managed 10 points and seven boards. In a pretty competitive afternoon game with the Grayson Lady Rams, Collins put up 13 points and snagged eight rebounds to help Mountain View come out with a win. She’s definitely a young player I’d be on the lookout for in a tough region.

Elexus Bell

Carrollton: ’18 Elexus Bell

​The Trojans will bring back all but four players from last year’s roster for the 2017-2018 GHSA season. Among the seasoned veterans is Elexus Bell, a senior forward. The most dominant post I saw all day, Bell’s post game is something to be seen. Bell put up 20 points and eight rebounds against a young, scrappy McEachern team. Another impressive aspect of her game was her basketball IQ. The Trojans scored off of several nice entry passes from Bell in the high-low game. Bell and the Trojans will surely be a team to watch coming out of 5A Region 7.

Grayson: ’19 Jazmin Robinson

​Rising Junior Jazmin Robinson is bringing the energy to a solid Grayson Rams team. The 5’10 G/F is scrappy and aggressive on the defensive end and always seems to find her way to rebounds and loose balls. Despite a loss to a good Mountain View team, Robinson had eight points and eight rebounds to go along with several steals. Robinson approaches the game with a blue-collar mentality and is willing to do what most others won’t.

Harper Vick

Harrison: ’18 Harper Vick

​The 2016-2017 6A State Runner-Up Harrison Hoyas came to play Wednesday at Georgia State. Coach Steve Lenahan brought both his Varsity and JV squads to get a piece of the action in front of the GSU coaching staff. Senior Harper Vick did not disappoint, putting up 20 points and four rebounds in the Hoya win over Team Elite. Vick had the three-ball going early but scoring in transition is what was really remarkable about Vick’s game. Slashing to the rim, she was able to finish with some exciting moves to help Harrison High cruise to a victory. Vick and the Hoyas will look for some revenge this year on their way to the state tournament.

2017-18 GHSA Girls Basketball Transfer List

Notable transfers across the GHSA girls circuit. If you know of anymore, please message me @KyleSandy355 on Twitter, leave a comment on the site or email me at Kylesandy355@gmail.com.

Thanks!

Class AAAAAAA

SR Shekinah Howard – 6’0″ – (Hapeville Charter to Westlake)
SR Simone Lett – 6’1″ – (Pebblebrook to Westlake)
SR Yazz Wazeerud-din – 6’0″ – (Pope to Wheeler)
SR Laren VanArsdale – 5’3″ – (Whitefield Academy to Hillgrove)
SO Logan VanArsdale – 5’0″ – (Whitefield Academy to Hillgrove)
SR Catherine Shope – 5’7″ – (The King’s Academy to North Forsyth)

Class AAAAAA

SO Jade Buchanan – 5’5″ – (Peachtree Ridge to Northview)
JR Melany Jackson – 5’10” – (Jefferson County to Grovetown)

Class AAAAA

SR Sierra Sieracki – 5’10” – (Cambridge to Buford)

Class AAAA

JR Janiyah Jones – 5’8″ – (Whitewater to Henry County)
SO Olivia Cochran – 6’1″ – (Hardaway to Carver-Columbus)
JR Kianni Westbrook – 6’1″ (Cross Creek to Burke County)

Class AAA

Class AA

Class A

JR Jordan Isaacs – 6’2″ – (North Paulding to St. Francis)
SO Chandler Davis – 5’6″ – (Alpharetta to St. Francis)
SO Kennedi Philson – 6’0″ – (Chattahoochee to St. Francis)

 

Class AAAAAAA

Westlake picks up a pair of All-State Second Teamers in Shekinah Howard and Simone Lett. Howard comes in from Hapeville Charter where her play as a versatile wing garnered ACC interest. She averaged 15.7 points, 10.2 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game. Lett, a former Region 2 foe at Pebblebrook, averaged 15.8 points, 7.7 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.8 blocks as a 6-foot-1 forward.  The twosome joins a now loaded Westlake roster which is ready to come of age after graduating just two seniors.  With Taylor Hosendove expected to return, the Lions will flaunt three All-State selections.

Wheeler combats Westlake’s moves with the addition of Yazz Wazeerud-din. The athletic 6-foot forward was a First Team All Region 7-AAAAAA pick while at Pope.

Sisters Laren and Logan VanArsdale transfer from Whitefield Academy to Hillgrove. Laren was a First Team All-Region selection while Logan was an Honorable Mention pick in the loaded Region 6A. Laren is a playmaker that will make her teammates better with her ability to create off the bounce.

Catherine Shope adds major fire power to the North Forsyth backcourt, a team which already returns all five starters. Shope was a GICAA All-State selection after pouring in 21.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 4.4 steals per game at The King’s Academy in Woodstock. She is a high-volume scorer that will have help in place at North Forsyth, easing her offensive burden.

Class AAAAAA

Melany Jackson provides a reloading Grovetown team with some toughness inside. At 5-foot-10 from Jefferson County, Jackson rebounds the ball well and can put it on the floor from 15-feet in to get to the hoop. She averaged 8.1 points as a sophomore.

Class AAAAA
Class AAAA

In an effort to make sure Auburn-commit Brooke Moore goes out with a bang her senior year at Henry County, junior Janiyah Jones has moved in to strengthen the backcourt and take some of the scoring burden off Moore. Jones averaged 11.3 points and 5.4 rebounds as a sophomore at Whitewater.

Hardaway’s rebuilding process takes a monumental hit as Class AAAA All-State Second Teamer Olivia Cochran transfers to Carver-Columbus after posting 17.2 points, 10.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game as a 6-foot-1 freshman. She joins a Tiger team that finished as state runner-ups; their only weakness their lack of dominant size which Cochran more than makes up for now. Mariah Igus, Alycia Reese and Ja’nya Love-Hill will circle Cochran on the perimeter.

A part of Cross Creek’s twin tower success with Memphis-signee Alana Davis, Kianni Westbrook is ready to anchor her own team at Burke County. The 6-foot-1 lanky shot-blocker averaged 7.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2 blocks as a sophomore.

Class AAA
Class AA
Class A

With two All-Americans off to college, St. Francis lands Jordan Isaacs to pick up where they left off. The 6-foot-2 forward was an All-Region 3 First Team selection at North Paulding. She excels at rebounding and catches opponents off guard with her left-handed offensive arsenal.

Chandler Davis joins St. Francis after averaging over 11 points and 2 steals per game at Alpharetta as a freshman.

Bre’ana Singleton joins Sandy’s Spiel coverage team

In an effort to enhance the coverage of girls basketball over the spring and summer, Sandy’s Spiel has added Bre’ana Singleton as an intern lead content producer. Singleton, an upcoming graduate of West Georgia, was starting point guard and Team Captain for the Wolves this season. She is a 4.0 GPA student majoring in Mass Communications. A 2013 Collins Hill graduate, Singleton brings knowledge of the GHSA landscape to Sandy’s Spiel and a keen eye for talent at the girls prep level. She will oversee events throughout the off-season and evaluate high school talent. She can be found on Twitter @bre_singleton.

Spielin’ & Dealin’ Ep. 12: State Championship Recap

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Stegeman Coliseum & McCamish Pavilion were the perfect hosts to an incredible season ending week of GHSA basketball as 16 state champions were crowned. Kyle Sandy finished 13-3 on his state championship picks, losing his three games by a combined 7 points. Recaps of each championship game are included with special soundbytes from state champs: Clarence Jackson (Wilco), Alex Jones (Buford), Greg Blythe (Pace Academy), Rory Welsh (Langston Hughes), Larry Thompson (Greenforest), Tye Fagan (Upson-Lee), state runner-up Aaron Parr (St. Pius), Devonta Pullins (South Atlanta) and PJ Horne (Tift County).