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This week: High school basketball season heats up
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The high school basketball regular season is winding down, and this week’s action kicks off with a marquee matchup between two of the best teams in Region 8-AAA.

Thanks to the snow storm that wiped out a week’s worth of games, No. 4 West Hall and Gainesville take to the court tonight with playoff seeding on the line. A win tonight will put West Hall further ahead in the subregion standings with three games to play. One of those games comes Friday at Monroe Area, a team that lost by 10 in the two team’s previous meeting and two games behind the Spartans in the subregion standings.

A win by Gainesville could put the Red Elephants in a prime position for the No. 2 seed in the region tournament which would provide an easier road to qualifying for the state tournament. Gainesville has a winnable home game against Lanier on Tuesday, followed by a Saturday matchup with East Hall. The Red Elephants battle Monroe Area next Tuesday in a game that should decide the subregion runner up.

On the other side of the region, North Hall has a pivotal game this week against surprising White County, which currently is in second place in the North. The Trojans, who travel to Cleveland on Tuesday, won by nearly 20 points in the first meeting of the year on Jan. 15. With a game against first-place Franklin County looming

Friday, the Trojans need a win Tuesday to stay in the hunt for a No. 1 seed. North Hall won the Region 7-AAA championship last year en route to their run to the Class AAA semifinals.

The biggest girls game on the docket this week comes Friday when the East Hall Lady Vikings travel to Blue Ridge to take on the undefeated Fannin County Lady Rebels. East Hall is currently in third place in Region 8A-AA, but a win against Fannin County combined with a win over second-place Rabun County next Tuesday could propel it to a second-place finish in the subregion.

The week of basketball leads up to the biggest game of the year, the Super Bowl. This year’s game showcases the Pittsburgh Steelers, who defeated the New York Jets in the AFC Championship, and the Green Bay Packers, who won three straight road games as the No. 6 seed to reach the Super Bowl.

Both teams feature outstanding quarterbacks in the Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger and Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers and stout defenses capable of turning mistakes into touchdowns. The game also features two of the most storied franchises in all of football, as the Steelers have won a record six Super Bowls and Green Bay’s former coach Vince Lombardi is the namesake of the championship trophy. The Packers have won three Super Bowls in their history.

Sunday’s game, which will be played in the new Cowboys Stadium, starts at 6:30 p.m. on Fox.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Georgia and Georgia Tech continue their conference schedule this week with games against Arkansas, Auburn, Clemson and Miami. The Bulldogs kick off the two-game week with a visit to Arkansas on Wednesday. The Bulldogs host Auburn on Saturday.

The Yellow Jackets visits Miami on Thursday and host Clemson on Saturday.

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