Hawthorne High Gym. Photo Credit: Oelrich Construction.

Hawthorne to Face Ponce De Leon in Class 1A State Semifinal

The Hawthorne Lady Hornets will go head to head with the Ponce De Leon Lady Pirates in the girls high school Class 1a state semifinal tonight in Lakeland.

The Pirates are seeking their third straight 1A state championship title.

Hawthorne Success

Hawthorne High Gym. Photo Credit: Oelrich Construction.

The Hornets are 13-5 and have won their last seven games. The last game they lost was on Jan. 20.

Their playoff run began on Feb. 1, marking their first win of the 1A District 6 tournament after receiving a bye for the first round. They defeated Fort White 67-23 on Feb. 1 and Newberry 64-48 on Feb. 3 to secure the district title.

The regional tournament then commenced on Feb. 9, in which Hawthorne defeated Madison County 61-50 in the regional semifinal and was subsequently victorious with a 25-point win over Newberry in the regional final to secure a spot in the 1A state semifinal.

In 2020, the Hawthorne girls basketball team won its first state title in the program’s history. They’re now looking to advance to the class 1A state championship game to have a chance at their second championship title.

They’re also looking to redeem themselves after losing to the Pirates in the 2021 1A state championship.

Ponce De Leon’s Path

The Pirates are 20-3 and have won their last five games.

The Pirates also got a bye for the first round of their district tournament, so their playoff journey started on Feb. 1. They won the 1A District 2 tournament after defeating Holmes County 49-34 and Chipley 39-25.

They started the regional tournament strong with a 33-point victory over Poplar Springs in the regional semifinal. They then defeated Jay 47-41 in the regional finals to take them to the state semifinals.

Ponce De Leon has won the 1A state championship the past two years. They defeated Wildwood for the title in 2022 and Hawthorne back in 2021.

They’re now preparing to advance to their third straight 1A state championship match.


Hawthorne sophomore De’Mya Adams led the Hornets in their efforts to defeat Newberry 80-55 in their regional final matchup.

She dropped 41 points, with 27 coming in the second half alone.

Adams is averaging 18.8 points per game and leads the team in total scoring this season with 338 points.

Ponce De Leon senior Carmen Jones is averaging 17.2 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2 steals per game and is the Pirates’ leading scorer with 395 total points on the season.

Jones’ performance will be key in keeping the Pirates chances at a threepeat alive.

Hawthorne Headlines

Hornets head coach Cornelius Ingram said he was pleased with his team’s performance in their win over Newberry, overcoming senior Jaz’lyn Jackson’s ankle injury he suffered during the game.

Ingram said that Jackson is aiming to play tonight. She was part of 2020 team that won the program’s first ever state title.

Ingram spoke to his team’s perseverance.

Tip off is set for 6 p.m.

About Rachel Rosen

Rachel Rosen is a junior at the University of Florida pursuing a degree in Media Production, Management and Technology. As a camera operator for University of Florida sporting events, she has a passion for live sports production and broadcasting.

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