Friday, March 7, 2008

Class 5A Finals preview

If you're looking for boys and girls 5A basketball results as well as a preview of tomorrow's finals, well then you've come to the right place. As we all expected, and hoped for, the Wheeler boys took care of Hiram rather easily Thursday evening, winning 68-54. The game wasn't close for long, as Wheeler pushed away with a 21-2 second-quarter run. The Wildcats were led by the usual suspects, as Richard Howell put in a healthy 22 points to go along with 22 rebounds, while Dequan Jones scored 17 and Ari Stewart 15.

In the same way Wheeler took care of business, so did the Norcross Blue Devils, crushing Savannah on Thursday 79-46. Denzail Jones led all scorers with 19, and Al-Farouq Aminu came through with a strong 17-point showing.

This is exactly why I argue against upsets in the NCAA Tourney. In a single-elimination tournament, it's so rare that you get to see the two top teams face off in the end. Well, Friday, we will get just that, the showdown we have been waiting to see all season, as Wheeler and Norcross, easily the state's top two teams, do battle. This SHOULD be an absolute classic and I can't wait for tip-off.

On the girls side of things, just like on the boys, neither matchup was very close. First, Redan (24-7), or should I say Alisha Andrews, defeated Duluth 62-50. Andrews was simply amazing for Redan, scoring 28 points to go along with eight rebounds and a game-changing seven steals.

Justice was maintained in the second girls game as well, when Stephenson notched its place in the 5A state finals. No team has been better than the girls from Stephenson all year; the finals just wouldn't have seemed right without them in it. And you couldn't have asked for a better final matchup than the one we will get Friday night. What's better than watching an amazing talent and competitor like Alisha Andrews go against a true heavyweight the caliber of Stephenson? I think Stephenson will be "cutting down the nets" in the end; however, either way, we should be in for one heck of a ballgame.

Check back here at 7 p.m. on Friday for live updates on the girls 5A finals, and again at 8:45 for live updates on the amazing boys action as well. It should be a night to remember, no doubt. Until then....

Scott Janovitz can be reached at