District tournaments wrapped up last week, and the state tournaments begin tonight in girl’s high school basketball.
Multiple local teams participate in regional playoff action tonight, hoping to extend their seasons and reach the ultimate goal of a state title.
PK Yonge girls basketball travels to Jacksonville for a tough bout against the Providence School.
The PK Yonge Blue Wave are 17-8 overall this season and look to bounce back from a 47-31 loss to Father Lopez in districts. Providence is 19-7 and needs to extend their 11-game winning streak in order to keep their season alive tonight.
PK Yonge is led in scoring by senior guard Courtney Moore, who averages 16.4 points per game. Junior center Mya McGraw is second in scoring, averaging 14.8 points, and leads the Blue Wave in rebounds, with 9.5 per game.
The Providence Stallions are led in scoring by a freshman this season, as guard Ella Ortman averages 11.8 ppg.
PK Yonge’s long-time head coach Willie Powers was not pleased with his team’s effort in last week’s loss at Father Lopez, and sees many areas where they need to improve tonight.
Powers praised the coaching and discipline of Providence and cited transition offense as a key to tonight’s game.
In addition, Powers cited effort and preparation as reasons for the tough loss to Father Lopez, and hopes that the game served as a “wake-up call” for his team.
The winner will move on to face the winner of tonight’s Father Lopez-Interlachen matchup.
The defending state champion Trenton Tigers begin this year’s state tournament against a tough Lafayette Hornets squad.
Trenton is 21-5 on the season and Lafayette sits at 16-9.
Trenton head coach Bryant Frye is focused on playing sound defense the Hornets and star guard Renee Clines, in order to avoid an early playoff exit.
Clines scores 23.5 points per game for the Hornets, and also leads the team in assists and steals.
Trenton is pretty young this season after losing many seniors from last year’s state title team, but Frye is confident in this group.
Frye values the experience that some of his young players gained in last year’s postseason, as well as the continuity of the Tigers’ playing style and system.
Junior center Janiyah King leads the team in scoring, averaging 13.3 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. Junior forward Samarie McHenry averages a double-double, with 10.3 points and 10.5 rebounds per game.
The winner of tonight’s matchup will face the winner of Madison County-Branford next Tuesday.
In the 6A tournament, the 21-7 Columbia Tigers take on the 15-8 Creekside Knights. Columbia looks to bounce back from a 75-55 loss to Lincoln (Tallahassee) in the district final.
In 1A action, head coach Cornelius Ingram and Hawthorne take on Fort Meade. Hawthorne is 25-2 this season, as former Florida football and basketball star Ingram hopes to lead his alma mater to a state title.