Reigning Lanierland champs have new look, style
No. 4 East Hall vs. No. 5 Lakeview, 4 p.m. Friday (Dec. 5)
No. 1 North Hall vs. No. 8 Johnson, 7 p.m. Friday
No. 2 West Hall vs. No. 7 Flowery Branch, 7 p.m. Saturday (Dec.6)
No. 3 Gainesville vs. No. 6 Chestatee, 4 p.m. Saturday
No. 4 North Hall vs. No. 5 East Hall, 5:30 p.m. Friday
No. 1 West Hall vs. No. 8 Gainesville, 8:30 p.m. Friday
No. 3 Chestatee vs. No. 6 Johnson, 5:30 p.m., Saturday
No. 2 Flowery Branch vs. No. 7 Lakeview, 8:30 p.m. Saturday
All Dec. 5 and Dec. 6 games will be played at North Hall High School
GAINESVILLE — As a kickoff to the 49th Annual Lanierland Tournament, players and coaches from the 16 participating teams gathered Wednesday at Free Chapel for the Second Annual Fellowship of Christian Athletes Lanierland Tournament Breakfast.
While the players ate Chick-fil-A biscuits and listened to featured speakers Mahogany Hudson and Seth Vining, the coaches sat in a backroom at the church hammering out the tournament seedings and first-round matchups.
The outcome: The defending champion North Hall girls and the West Hall boys are the tournament’s No. 1 seeds.
"We worked hard in the offseason and have gotten off to a good start," said West Hall (5-0) coach Warren Sellers. "We’ve played well but have a long way to go."
The Spartans, who were 0-2 in last year’s tournament, will take on No. 8 seed Gainesville at 8:30 p.m. Friday.
"We don’t have an easy road," Sellers said. "Gainesville isn’t your typical No. 8 seed and are probably the best No. 8 in the history of the tournament.
"They are extremely athletic and well-coached."
Seedings for Lanierland were based on winning percentage and, if teams had equal records, a coin flip.
Filling out the rest of the boys’ bracket is Flowery Branch, at the No. 2 seed, taking on No. 7 Lakeview, No. 3 Chestatee against No. 6 Johnson and No. 4 North Hall against No. 5 seed, and defending Lanierland champion, East Hall.
On the girls side, the Lady Trojans (2-1) will play No. 8 Johnson.
"Hopefully (being a No. 1 seed) will boost our confidence," said first-year North Hall coach Bryan Richerson. "I hope it’s a plus, but a team’s record isn’t an indication of how their going to play in the tournament."
In other first round girls action, No. 2 seed West Hall will play No. 7 Flowery Branch, No. 3 Gainesville will play No. 6 Chestatee and No. 4 East Hall will play No. 5 Lakeview.
Of the team’s participating, Chestatee and Gainesville are the only two that have played each other already this season.
The two met Nov. 25 at Chestatee, with the Gainesville girls winning 39-36 while the Chestatee boys beat the Red Elephants 66-62.