High school basketball teams across the state are battling for region titles and a spot in the state playoffs this week, and Polk County teams are right in the mix as well.
Cedartown High School’s girls’ basketball team kicked off things Monday evening with a 62-31 win over Southeast Whitfield in the first round of the Region 7-4A tournament. The win secures the Lady Bulldogs a spot in the GHSA Class 4A state playoffs, which begin next week.
Hosting the Lady Raiders, Cedartown made quick work of some early turnovers and built an 18-8 lead after the first period that only widened as the game continued.
The biggest blow came in the third quarter when the Lady Bulldogs went on an 16-0 run and held Southeast to just three points.
“I was proud of the effort. Something we've been talking about all week in practice is this is a new season. We’re 0-0, they’re 0-0. You win, you keep playing. You lose, you go home. I think we were focused tonight. We came out and played hard, and was able to kind of put it away early,” Cedartown coach Levi Wigley said.
Seniors Qiana Watson and Keke Turner led the way for Cedartown, with Watson sinking three 3-pointers on the way to a game-high 16 points, while Turner finished with a pair of treys and 14 points.
Carlie Holland came off the bench and hit two 3’s while scoring eight points.
Turner was voted the 7-4A Girls Region Player of the Year by region coaches last week, while Watson was named to the all-region team. Wigley said having the duo to help lead them on the court has been critical.
“I've told them all year, as they go, we go. They've got to be out front and they've stepped up to that challenge. They got a lot of steals and they give us that athleticism on defense, to put pressure on people, and they played a good game,” Wigley said.
The Lady Bulldogs (14-6) are the region’s No. 3 seed in the tournament and will play Northwest Whitfield in the region semifinals at 4 p.m. Thursday at Northwest Whitfield, which is hosting the remainder of the 7-4A tournament.
Cedartown’s boys, meanwhile, had a bye through to the region semifinals after finishing as the regular season region champs and earning the No. 1 seed. The Bulldogs are set to take on Central-Carroll at Northwest Whitfield on Thursday night at 8:30 p.m.
Rockmart High School’s teams play in the Region 6-3A tournament this week at Sonoraville High School in Gordon County.
Rockmart’s boys improved their seeding in the tournament with a 59-57 win over Adairsville last Friday, Feb. 12, but came up short in the region tournament on Tuesday, losing to North Murray, 69-57.
The loss brought the Jackets’ season to an end as they finished with a 6-16 record.
Rockmart’s girls saw their six-game winning streak snapped by Adairsville on Friday as the Lady Jackets lost 55-53. The loss didn’t hurt Rockmart’s seeding in the tournament, and the girls open play this week as the No. 3 seed with a game Wednesday at 6 p.m. with the winner earning a spot in the region semifinals and a state playoff berth.
The Lady Jackets are led by Region 6-3A Girls Player of the Year Keyarah Berry, and Megan Little, who was voted to the all-region team by region coaches. Freshman Analee Morris was named to the all-region second team.