People always ask me, “What’s the best game in town this week?”
Peach State Stops of the Week will highlight some of the best basketball being played in Georgia for the current week. Whether it’s a tournament/showcase, a region rivalry, a Top 10 showdown, or a seldom heard sleeper, Peach State Stops of the Week will let you know what gym you need to get into.
Eight state-ranked teams head to Norcross, GA this Saturday for the Wesleyan Showcase. If you’re searching for elite level girls basketball, look no further. Future D-1 players litter the floor.
1 PM: Class 2A No. 4 Model vs. Class 6A No. 5 Sequoyah
The guard-heavy Lady Chiefs will have to slow down South Carolina-signee Victaria Saxton of Model. The 6-foot-1 post is an elite rebounder and shot blocker and a gazelle in the open floor. She has carried the Blue Devil program since her freshman season. The double-double machine will have a major size advantage against the Lady Chiefs, but Sequoyah will throw an experienced backcourt that knows how to win back at Model. Alyssa Cagle is one of the state’s best unsigned point guards, that has completely healed from last year’s ACL tear. Peyton Satterfield is the school’s single-game recorder holder for most three-pointers made and Colby Carden is a feisty scorer and defender.
2:30 PM: Class 6A No. 4 Northview vs. Class 5A No. 2 Flowery Branch
The Lady Titans of Northview took their lumps against Wesleyan at the Johns Creek Gladiator Showcase and now gets a chance to see if they are better for it as they meet North Georgia power, Flowery Branch. The Taniyah Worth (Alabama) vs. Ashlee Austin matchup might be one of the best in the event. Worth is a do-everything small forward that can carry the Lady Falcons while Austin is a physical stretch-four that plays with a mean streak. The supporting casts will be the deciding factor. Junior guard Caroline Wysocki has taken her game to the next level for Coach Courtney Gonzalez and gives Flowery Branch a reliable second scoring option next to Worth. Her and veteran Lexie Sengkhammee have seen the best of the best while at Flowery Branch. They matchup against Northview’s young and dynamic backcourt of sophomore point guard Asjah Inniss and freshman shooting guard Eden Sample, who is coming off a career-high 24 points. Inside, 6-foot-3 freshman Ashlee Locke locks horns with bruiser Maya Richards. Foul trouble has crippled the Lady Titans in big games in the past; if Inniss and Richards get tagged quickly, Flowery Branch might soar past them.
4 PM: Class 7A No. 2 Collins Hill vs. Class 3A No. 1 GAC
This star-studded matchup features two teams with sky-high expectations that will consider their seasons a failure if they don’t win their respective state titles. Collins Hill’s Bria Harmon (Purdue), Javyn Nicholson (UGA), Jada Rice (NC State) and Jaron Stallworth (Mercer) go to war with GAC’s Robyn Benton (Auburn), Caria Reynolds (Hofstra), Taylor Sutton (MTSU) and MaryMartha Turner (Wofford). The Spartans have smoked everyone they’ve played, including beating Class 7A No. 4 Norcross (64-51), Class 5A No. 7 Southwest DeKalb (81-37) and four-time defending state champion Class 7A No. 3 McEachern (61-50). The Eagles haven’t quite played the schedule GAC has, with their best win coming over Class 7A No. 7 Cherokee (69-53) and losing to Class A-Private No. 1 Holy Innocents’ (64-57). With four D-1 players on each side going toe-to-toe, keep an eye on GAC junior point guard Kennedi Williams and Collins Hill three-point specialist junior Katherine Fourie to make shots when called upon.
5:30 PM: Class 5A No. 1 Buford vs. Class A-Private No. 2 Wesleyan
A true heavyweight showdown between a pack of Wolves. Wesleyan blew past Buford last year 73-50 at Buford; expect the Lady Wolves to play with a chip on their shoulder. Buford will have the size advantage with their powerful big guards led by 6-foot Michigan State-signee Tory Ozment. She creates with the ball in her hands and can get two feet in the paint whenever she wants. The Wolves like to drive behind drives which leads to layups or kick outs to open three-point shooters like Air Force-signee Audrey Weiner. Kya Styles and Tate Walter are threats to score the ball while 6-foot-3 post Jessica Nelson (UMass) is a space eater that can turn back shots. Nelson did not play in the Craig Sager Memorial Championship game last week. Wesleyan doesn’t have the size that Buford boasts, but the Wolves play fast and share the ball extremely well. Their press causes turnovers which lead to easy breakaways. Offensively, Amaya Register (Old Dominion) orchestrates the offense with elite ball movement. Sutton West (Furman) is a pesky long-armed 6-footer that rebounds, alters shots with her length and always seems to be at the right place at the right time. Nearly the entire roster is a threat from deep including playmaking freshman point guard Paige Lyons and physical yet deftly agile versatile post AC Carter.