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Prep basketball: A few things to look for down the stretch
West Hall’s Tiffany Black, drives to the basket past Lumpkin County’s Kayna Clemons during the Lady Spartans’ game in November at the West Hall High gymnasium. - photo by Scott Rogers | The Times

Make or break for the Trojans
The North Hall boys are currently undefeated in subregion play and have won nine of their last 10 games. The question is, can the Trojans keep it up down the stretch and be a No. 1 seed heading into the Region 7-AAA tournament?

They’ve done the hard part, beating East Hall at East Hall, but they still have to play White County on Friday, Chestatee at Chestatee on Jan. 29 and the Vikings again Feb. 1. That three-day period will either break the Trojans or have them going into the playoffs smelling like roses.

West Hall resurgence
Last year the West Hall girls basketball team won only three games, none against subregion 7B-AAA opponents.

As it stands right now, the Lady Spartans are No. 2 in 7B-AAA, with an overall record of 8-8. They’ve lost only one subregion game and that was to Gainesville.

The Lady Spartans have a tough row to hoe in the last half of the subregion season including away games at Flowery Branch, Johnson and Pickens, (which they beat in overtime Jan. 15), not to mention another matchup with subregion 7B-AAA leader Gainesville.

Can the girls from Oakwood prevail and remain a No. 2-seed going into the region tournament a year after winning just three games, or will the ardous task of beating teams just as good as they are be too much?

Bold predictions
The Flowery Branch boys will win out in subregion 7B-AAA and, a year after going winless in subregion play, be a No. 1 seed heading into what is sure to be an ultra-competitive Region 7-AAA tournament.

The Gainesville boys will not make the state playoffs and, with a possible three more losses in subregion play to West Hall, Johnson and Flowery Branch, will be a No. 4 seed going into the region tournament.

Big game in Blue Ridge
The Dawson County boys are in the midst of a nine-game winning streak and have beaten, with the exception of two non-subregion opponents and one subregion opponent, every team they will face for the remainder of the season.

The Tigers are currently No. 2 in subregion 8B-AA behind an undefeated, yes undefeated, Fannin County team.

When Dawson County and Fannin County faced off earlier in the season, the Rebels won by two points in Dawsonville.

The two teams meet in Blue Ridge on Friday and, barring a late-season debacle the likes of which hasn’t been seen, the winner will be the No. 1 seed out of subregion 8B-AA heading into the region tournament.

Just not fair
Interesting factoid, the Buford girls are in the same subregion, not region but subregion, with the Class AA No. 1- and No. 2-ranked teams in the state — Wesleyan and Greater Atlanta Christian.

The Lady Wolves aren’t having too shabby of a season and are ranked No. 4 in the state themselves, but here’s the kicker: Unless they are able to beat both Wesleyan and GAC, Buford will be the No. 3 seed out of subregion 6S-AA going into the region tournament.

The No. 4-ranked team in the state going into the region tournament as a No. 3 seed? It’s unheard of.

The good news for the Lady Wolves is that they face both Wesleyan and GAC at home down the stretch.

The bad news? Wesleyan held them to only 21 points in the first matchup and they lost to GAC by 11 points.

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