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High school basketball: Vote in favor of shot clock met with swift praise
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North Hall's Luke Gunter fires off a shot with Lumpkin's Peyton Polk defending at Dawson County High School on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019. - photo by Austin Steele

The GHSA took a big step Tuesday to eliminate ‘stall ball’ at the end of basketball games. 

After a resounding approval by executive committee, the state’s governing body for high school sports will phase in a 30-second shot clock over the next three years. The motion passed with a 53-10 vote among members in Thomaston. 

In Hall County, the opinion is pretty clear that having a shot clock will be a good thing, eliminating the possibility of dribbling in place to drain the clock and force a foul. 

“I love it,” Cherokee Bluff boys coach Benjie Wood said. “It’s great for the game and the players will enjoy having it.”

Next year, the shot clock will be used strictly for holiday tournaments and showcase games, potentially the Lanierland. 

In Year 2, the shot clock will again be used in approved tournament and showcase games. Each region will have the option to use the shot clock in league games. 

The final year of the phase-in plan will make the shot clock mandatory for all games, including the state playoffs. 

“It’s going to be exciting and I think they did it right with a three-year plan to get used to having the shot clock,” Lakeview Academy boys coach Tyler Sanders said. 

Momentum toward implementing a shot clock has built in recent years. Langston Hughes boys coach Rory Welch was the first to craft a resolution for the shot clock. University of Georgia men’s coach Tom Crean has also given a ringing endorsement for the shot clock at the prep level. 

Each school will be responsible for covering the cost of its shot clock, which will affix to the top of the backboard. 

East Hall girls coach Justin Wheeler said the addition of the shot clock will also be good for fans with more possessions in the final minutes of games. 

“We want to see the game progress,” Wheeler said. “It’s good to be changing with the times.”

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