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No. 2 Jesuit (Tampa) has a tough slate as it takes on Calvary Christian (Clearwater, Fla.) and No. 6 IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.). The Ascenders, meanwhile, take on small-school powerhouse Canterbury prior to the Jesuit matchup. No. 4 Stoneman Douglas, meanwhile, tangles with No. 12 Calvary Christian Academy in one week.
Those matchups will have heavy influence on the rankings in the coming week, as will the final two matchups between No. 1 Buford (Ga.) and No. 25 Winder-Barrow. Although the Bulldogs lost the first game to the top-ranked Wolves, they will likely throw All-American Brady House in one of the final two games of the three-game series providing Buford's toughest test so far this season.
Dropped out: Sam Houston (Lake Charles, La.), Pioneer (Mission, Texas), Braddock (Miami, Fla.).
Game of the Week: Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.) 6, Pinnacle, 5. The Huskies rallied from a 5-3 deficit with two runs in the top of the seventh and then scored the winning run in the top of the eighth on a sacrifice fly.
Player of the Week: Jay Dill, Baylor. Dill homered four times in five wins for Baylor and drove in 12 runs.
Recruit Watch: Braden Montgomery, Madison Central. The All-America candidate had a double, triple and home run in one game last week and also picked up a pitching win.
Game to Watch: Buford vs. Winder-Barrow. Although Buford defeated Winder-Barrow in their first matchup on Monday, the Bulldogs got to Wolves' starter Dylan Lesko for four runs on five hits. Winder-Barrow is likely to give No. 1 Buford its toughest test for the remainder of the regular season.
1. Buford (Ga.)
Record: 26-0 | Last week: 1
Results: Def. Brookwood, 8-1; def. Winder-Barrow, 8-4.
Stats: Dylan Lesko had three hits and Riley Stanford had a home run against Brookwood. Lesko also struck out seven to get the win over Winder-Barrow.
Next: Wed./Fri. vs. Winder-Barrow
2. Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.)
Record: 19-1 | Last week: 2
Results: Def. Tampa Catholic, 6-1; def. Lakeland, 8-0; def. Jefferson, 8-2.
Stats: Dominic Castellano struck out nine against Tampa Catholic. Jake Kulikowski and Bradke Lohry each homered against Jefferson.
Next: Fri. vs. Calvary Christian
3. Madison Central (Madison, Miss.)
Record: 22-0 | Last week: 3
Results: Def. Warren Central, 16-3, 13-2. def. Clinton, 11-3.
Stats: Braden Montgomery had a double, triple and home run and Hunter Hines added a home run in the first game. Montgomery also had a triple in the second game. Montgomery had three hits and got the win against Clinton.
Next: Fri./Sat. vs. Clinton
4. Stoneman Douglas (Parkland, Fla.)
Record: 20-1 | Last week: 4
Results: Def. Westminster Academy, 9-1, def. American Heritage, 11-1.
Stats: Roman Anthony had two home runs against Westminster and one against American Heritage.
Next: April 21 vs. Calvary Christian Academy.
5. Hamilton (Chandler, Ariz.)
Record: 9-1 | Last week: 5
Results: Def. Brophy College Prep, 14-7; def. Pinnacle, 6-5.
Stats: Roch Cholowsky and Gavin Turley each hit a double and a home run against Brophy College Prep. Josh Tiedemann had two doubles against Pinnacle and Brock Selvidge struck out 12.
Next: Wed. vs. Liberty (Peoria); Fri. vs. Desert Ridge (Mesa).
6. IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
Record: 21-2 | Last week: 7
Results: Def. Central Pointe Christian Academy, 7-0; def. Inspiration Academy, 7-3.
Stats: Stone Russell hit a home run against Central Pointe. Jackson Ferris struck out seven in the win. Mason Albright struck out 12 against Inspiration.
Next: April 19 vs. Canterbury; April 20 vs. Jesuit.
7. Barbe (Lake Charles, La.)
Record: 28-2 | Last week: 8
Results: Def. Acadiana, 10-3; def. Comeaux, 6-0; def. Anacoco, 1-0; def. Comeaux, 6-0.
Stats: Gavin Guidry struck out eight against Acadiana.
Next: Thur./Sat. vs. Lafayette.
8. Lake Travis (Austin, Texas)
Record: 24-2-2 | Last week: 11
Results: Def. Del Valle, 4-0, 10-3; def. Bowie, 7-3.
Stats: Ethan Calder struck out 13 in the first game and he had a double in the second game. He also got the win with eight strikeouts against Bowie.
Next: Fri. vs. Bowie.
9. St. Mary Prep (Orchard Lake, Mich.)
Record: 8-0 | Last week: 13
Results: Def. Brother Rice, 15-1; def. University Liggett, 12-6
Stats: Ciaran Caughey had 10 strikeouts and Ike Irish hit a home run against Brother Rice. Irish also hit a home run against University and Nolan Schubart had a double and a home run.
Next: Wed. vs. Divine Child (DH).
10. Friendswood (Friendswood, Texas)
Record: 20-0 | Last week: 14
Results: Def. Lee (Baytown), 12-0.
Next: Fri. vs. Manvel.
11. Farragut (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Record: 19-1 | Last week: 15
Results: Def. West, 7-0, 7-1; def. Knoxville Catholic, 8-6. def. Lenoir City, 3-2.
Stats: Hudson Seiglar homered and Parker Evans had two doubles in the first game and Bryce Burkey went 3-for-4 with a double in the second game against West.
Next: Wed. vs. Heritage.
12. Calvary Christian Academy (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
Record: 16-3-1 | Last week: 6
Results: Tied Trinity Christian Academy, 4-4; lost to Doral Academy, 5-4; def. Braddock, 6-0.
Stats: Rene Lastres and Alex Ulloa each hit a home run in the 10-inning tie against Trinity Christian.
Next: Fri. vs. Bolles; Sat. vs. St.Johns Country Day.
13. Reagan (San Antonio, Texas)
Record: 24-3 | Last week: 16
Results: Def. MacArthur 11-0 and Madison, 11-1; def. Clark, 8-0.
Stats: Stayton Ankrom had a grand slam against Madison and Hogan Heller also homered. Jacob Burcham had a double and a home run against Clark.
Next: Fri. vs. Brandeis.
14. Thousand Oaks (Calif.)
Record: 8-0 | Last week: 17
Results: Did not play
Next: Thur. vs. Newbury Park.
15. Hewitt-Trussville (Trussville, Ala.)
Record: 25-2 | Last week: 18
Results: Def. Gadsden City, 5-1. def. Vestavia Hills, 9-1.
Next: Thur. vs. Vestavia Hills
16. Auburn (Ala.)
Record: 25-2 | Last week: 19
Results: Def. Carrollton, 11-1.
Stats: Ryan Austin and Riley Austin each hit a home run and Will Turner had two doubles against Carrollton.
Next: Wed./Thur. vs. Smiths Station.
17. Carrollton (Ga.)
Record: 25-2 | Last week: 9
Results: lost to Auburn, 11-1; def. Alexander, 12-1; def. Norcross, 10-3. def. Alexander, 8-3; def. East Paulding, 8-1.
Stats: Eli Runyan hit a home run against got the win against Alexander. He added a double and triple against Norcross. Colton Cosper and Samuel Simpson each hit home runs against Alexander.
Next: Fri. vs. East Paulding.
18. Bryant (Ark.)
Record: 16-1 | Last week: 21
Results: def. Conway, 6-4.
Stats: Ryan Riggs had a home run and three RBI in the win.
Next: Fri. vs. Northside.
19. Baylor (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
Record: 12-2 | Last week: 22
Results: Def. McMinn County, 9-0; def. Christian Academy of Knoxville, 3-0; def. Silverdale Academy, 8-2; def Chattanooga Christian, 13-0, 17-1.
Stats: Henry Godbout hit two home runs and Jay Dill had one against McMinn County. Daniel Corona had two doubles against CAK. Corona, Dill and Hunter Herndon all hit one out against Silverdale. Corona and Dill both hit a home run against Chattanooga Christian in the first game and Dill, Godbout and Carson Yates each hit one out in the second game.
Next: Thur. vs. Chattanooga Christian.
20. Rancho Bernardo (San Diego, Calif.)
Record: 11-0 | Last week: NR
Results: Def. LaJolla, 3-0; def. Torrey Pines, 12-0.
Stats: Trent Abel had three hits and a home run against Torrey Pines.
Next: Wed. vs. Carlsbad; Fri. vs. Sage Creek.
21. Orange Lutheran (Orange, Calif.)
Record: 9-1 | Last week: NR
Results: Def. Birmingham, 6-2; def. Damien, 10-1; def. Harvard-Westlake, 9-5.
Stats: Casey Borba had two doubles against Harvard-Westlake.
Next: Wed. vs. Redondo Union
22. Fort Zumwalt West (O'Fallon, Mo.)
Record: 16-1 | Last week: NR
Results: Def. Fort Zumwalt South, 10-3; def. Vianney, 6-5; def. Troy Buchanan, 8-1.
Next: Wed. vs. Troy Buchanan.
23. Seymour (Tenn.)
Record: 22-1 | Last week: 20
Results: Def. William Blount, 9-4; lost to Maryville, 7-3; def. Heritage, 5-3; def. Roane County, 16-2; def. Tennessee, 4-3.
Stats: Adam Quincy went 3-for-4 with a double against William Blount. AJ Berry had two doubles against Roane County.
Next: Sat. at Grace Christian Academy
24. Gregory-Portland (Portland, Texas)
Record: 23-2-1 | Last week: 12
Results: Def. Moody, 4-2; lost to Carroll, 10-0. lost to Veterans Memorial, 2-0.
Stats: Malachi Lott had a double and got the pitching win against Moody.
Next: Fri. vs. Flour Bluff; Sat. vs. Victoria West.
25. Winder-Barrow (Winder, Ga.)
Record: 19-2 | Last week: 23
Results: Def. Mountain View, 8-3; lost to Buford, 8-4.
Stats: Brady House had a home run against Mountain View and two doubles against Buford.
Next: Wed./Fri. vs. Buford.
Prior to the 2020-21 season, the Georgia High School Association approved a phase-in of a 30-second shot clock for all varsity boys and girls
basketball games, becoming the ninth state to adopt a shot clock.
The Peach State joined California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Washington as the only states to use a 30- or 35-second shot clock.
Guidelines approved by the NFHS include displaying two timepieces connected to a horn that is distinctive from the game-clock horn, and using an alternative timing device, such as a stopwatch at the scorer’s table, for a shot clock malfunction. The guidelines also allow for corrections to the shot clock only during the shot-clock period in which an error occurred and the officials have definite information relative to the mistake or malfunction.Although a proposal for a national rule mandating a shot clock was not approved, the ruling is likely to bring momentum to the shot-clock movement across high school basketball.
According to the most recent NFHS High School Athletics Participation Survey, a
total of 540,769 boys participated in basketball in 18,617 schools,
and 399,067 girls participated in the sport in 18,210 schools across the
country. It is the third-most popular sport for boys and girls.
The event was played throughout last week with state championships in all four classes held Saturday. According to a Twitter account devoted to the Iowa high school baseball tournament, 29,904 fans passed through the turnstiles – the highest turnout since 2014.
Due to virus concerns, ticket sales for each game were capped around 1,800, according to a press release distributed by the IHSAA. Capacity at Principal Park is 11,500.
The best-attended state tournament since 2014, all during a global pandemic and safety protocols. Thanks for your support.— Iowa HS Baseball (@iahsbb) August 2, 2020
13 — 35,095 (record)
14 — 34,428
15 — 26,311
16 — 29,153
17 — 25,709
18 — 27,533
19 — 28,797
20 — 29,904
Total (16 years) — 483,254 pic.twitter.com/MDIPaSQpHq
While reports from last week's championships have been positive, the state's summer baseball and softball seasons haven't been without adversity when it comes to the novel coronavirus. ESPN reported in early July that at least 25 of 338 baseball teams and 20 softball teams have encountered some type of exposure to COVID-19.
Class 4A baseball championship contender Dowling Catholic (West Des Moines) ended its season around the same time after a member of the team tested positive for COVID-19. The school's softball team also ended its season prematurely.
The season got underway a month later than originally scheduled. Those initial baseball and softball contests in Iowa were the first high school sports events since the pandemic shut things down in March.
No one really knows how the basketball season will shake out in the high school setting. Many club teams managed to get in 40 or more games during the summer without an apparent negative impact. Still, schools will approach safety and virus control much differently than summer tournament operators, so the fact that club teams played bunches of games may not mean the same for high school teams.
And even if games are played, schedules have been disrupted, most notably in California. In that state, practice won't even begin until March, with the season set to end in mid-June. In other states, regular season schedules have been cut back and postseasons shortened or even eliminated entirely.
On top of all that, teams are much less likely to travel this year, which makes it more difficult to evaluate teams from a national perspective. Top 25 teams can be expected to dominate locally, but major intersectional events test them against their peers. That won't happen nearly as much this year, so it's likely there will be more unbeaten teams and fewer ways to determine which ones might stand above the others.
1. Lake Highland Prep (Orlando, Fla.)
Head coach: Al Honor | 2019-20: 29-2, No. 16 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Eight players return from the Florida 4A championship team — including senior Alabama commit Kayla Blackshear and junior Nyla Harris — as the Highlands are taking their chance for national prominence seriously. The Orlando school travels to the United Bank Holiday Invitational (formerly the Crescom Bank Holiday Classic) in South Carolina and She Got Game in Atlanta, giving Lake Highland Prep one of the most challenging schedules in the country. Even amid a pandemic, strength of schedule has to count for something in the MaxPreps Top 25.
2. Bishop McNamara (Forestville, Md.)
Head coach: Frank Oliver Jr. | 2019-20: 27-5, No. 7 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Despite losing five players off of last year's team, Bishop McNamara has once more reloaded (it seems like the DMV never runs out of talent). And even though the Mustangs may not travel much, the always tough Washington Catholic Athletic Conference provides plenty of opportunities to show how good this team really is.
3. Duncanville (Texas)
Head coach: LaJeanna Howard | 2019-20: 40-3, No. 5 in final Top 25
Breakdown: Even the loss of McDonald's All-American Deja Kelly won't slow the Duncanville roll, as plenty of talent returns for the defending 6A champions. That said, though, Texas has more than a few quality teams, and it won't be all that easy for the Pantherettes to hold on to this spot.
4. Hopkins (Minnetonka, Minn.)
Head coach: Tara Starks | 2019-20: 30-0, No. 4 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Paige Bueckers is now the next big thing at UConn and coach Brian Cosgriff retired, but it will still be a surprise if Hopkins loses a game in Minnesota. Six-foot-four junior Maya Nnaji leads a deep, talented roster that should coast through however many games Hopkins winds up playing.
5. Edison Academy (Detroit)
Head coach: Monique Brown | 2019-20: 23-0, No. 8 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Michigan State commit Damiya Hagemann tops the list of players with Power 5 potential on the Edison roster, which once again should be way too much for any Michigan team to overcome. And as with many teams this year, there will be no travel, so it will be hard to know how good Edison really is.
6. Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)
Head coach: Kevin Kiernan | 2019-20: 30-3, No. 25 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: As always, Southern California is loaded with quality teams, and if Mater Dei can rise above the pack, No. 6 in the nation makes a lot of sense. But "rising above the pack" is a lot easier said than done. The Monarchs will need a big year from Stanford-bound Brooke Demetre, among others, to retain this ranking.
7. Westlake (Atlanta)
Head coach: Hilda Hankerson | 2019-20: 30-2, No. 14 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Led by senior South Carolina commit Raven Johnson, Westlake's deep roster has one missing ingredient: size. A single returner is taller than 6-0, but that's the only weakness in an otherwise rock-solid top 10 team.
8. St. John's (Washington, D.C.)
Head coach: Johnathan Scribner | 2019-20: 22-9
Breakdown: Early last season without the injured Azzi Fudd — favored as the 2020-21 MaxPreps National Player of the Year — the Cadets were a very good team, but not a great one. As Fudd got healthier, St. John's got better and better. Fudd is now 100 percent and primed for as great season. Not coincidentally, so is St. John's.
9. Incarnate Word Academy (St. Louis)
Head coach: Dan Rolfes | 2019-20: 26-4
Breakdown: The Red Knights' quest for an eighth state title was denied by COVID, but with all but two players returning from a 26-4 team, Rolfes has all the pieces in place for another championship run. Like No. 7 Westlake, Incarnate Wood lacks a dominant post presence, but makes up for it with size up and down the roster.
10. St. John-Vianney (Holmdel, N.J.)
Head coach: Dawn Karpell | 2019-20: 28-1, No. 19 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: For most schools, being ranked No. 19 in the nation is the culmination of years of program building and, when seniors graduate, is followed by a swift decline. But Karpell and St. John-Vianney see their No. 19 ranking as the beginning of something special. Every player returns, including point guard Madison St. Rose.
11. DeSoto (Texas)
Head coach: Andrea Robinson | 2019-20: 32-3, No. 23 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: While some teams scramble to find a 6-footer to play the post, DeSoto's Robinson has three players 6-4 or taller — and all three juniors are ranked in the Hoopgurlz 2022 Top 60. Size matters but beating Duncanville in postseason matters more, and that's DeSoto's biggest hurdle.
12. Reynoldsburg (Ohio)
Head coach: Jack Purtell | 2019-20: 18-8
Breakdown: How can an eight-loss team start out No. 12 in the nation? When two elite transfers — Louisville-bound Alexia Mobley and Imarianah Russell — bulk up an already solid roster. Ohio, though, has its usual crop of quality teams, so Reynoldsburg is far from a lock to hold on to this slot.
13. Norman (Okla.)
Head coach: Michael Neal | 2019-20: 25-1, No. 24 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: With point guard Kelbie Washington running the show and 6-1 Chantae Embry scoring and rebounding, Norman is looking to do even better than last year — which would take some doing, since Oklahoma's best only lost once.
14. New Hope Academy (Landover Hills, Md.)
Head coach: Sam Caldwell | 2019-20: 23-8
Breakdown: Caldwell always attracts talent, and that trend continues in his third year at New Hope. This year's roster is headed by point guard Kennedy Fauntleroy and 6-2 post Maria Gakdeng, but there's plenty of firepower after those two — and thus a ranking in the top 15.
15. Sidwell Friends (Washington, D.C.)
Head coach: Tamika Dudley | 2019-20: 25-6
Breakdown: A new power is rising in the always-loaded DMV, as junior Kiki Rice, who averaged 26.8 points, 10 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.6 blocks per game a year ago, is the prime mover behind the Quakers' jump into elite status. Sophomore Jadyn Donovan also averaged a double-double for this young team, so get used to hearing the name.
16. Hoover (Ala.)
Head coach: Krystle Johnson | 2019-20: 32-3
Breakdown: Hoover is traditionally one of the strongest high school sports schools in Alabama and with sophomore Reniya Kelly and junior Aniya Hubbard leading the way, add girls basketball to the list of powerhouse Buccaneers programs. Of course, at 32-3, Hoover wasn't half-bad last year, but expecting more this time around would not be a mistake.
17. Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.)
Head coach: Sue Phillips | 2019-20: 26-3
Breakdown: Clearly the best in Northern California, Mitty rolls out a deep, talented team chock full of Division I players. The best are probably seniors Marley Langi and Hunter Hernandez, but Phillips has multiple options and many ways to win.
18. Cypress Creek (Houston)
Head coach: Jennifer Alexander | 2019-20: 41-1
Breakdown: Yes, Cypress Creek played 42 games last year and lost just one. On top of that Texas commits Rori Harmon (15.6 points, 5.2 assists per game) and Kyndall Hunter (20.0 points per game) return for their final season, so there's no reason to expect much drop off. In fact, Cougars' fans might wonder why No. 3 Duncanville and No. 11 DeSoto are ranked higher.
19. Ensworth (Nashville, Tenn.)
Head coach: Mary Taylor Cowles | 2019-20: 28-0, No. 9 in final MaxPreps Top 25
Breakdown: Ensworth might not be quite as good as last year — but it's hard to top a perfect season and a top 10 national ranking. Still, the Cambridge sisters — freshman Jaloni and junior Kennedy — will keep Ensworth in the national conversation and at the top of the Tennessee list.
20. Rutgers Prep (Somerset, N.J.)
Head coach: Mary Klinger | 2019-20: 26-5
Breakdown: As always, New Jersey produces plenty of quality players, and Rutgers Prep has a lot of them. Senior Christina Dalce and freshman Mikayla Blakes are the top two, but they are just the tip of the iceberg on a deep, experienced team that could easily wind up in the top 10 at season's end.
21. Valley Vista (Surprise, Ariz.)
Head coach: Rachel Matakas | 2019-20: 28-3
Breakdown: With 6-0 wing Jennah Isai distributing and 6-1 power forward Marisa Davis, a Washington commit, taking care of business inside, Valley Vista is the best in Arizona — and primed to make the jump from regional power to national recognition.
22. Archbishop Wood (Warminster, Pa.)
Head coach: Mike McDonald | 2019-20: 21-7
Breakdown: It used to be that Archbishop Wood passed the ball 15 times before taking a mid-range jumper, hoping to win 39-38 — but those days are long gone. Led by Villanova signee Kaitlyn Orihel and 6-0 junior wing Ryanne Allen, Philly's best is looking to score early and often ... and win going away.
23. Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)
Head coach: Special Jennings | 2019-20: 17-6
Breakdown: Usually a 17-6 team that loses six seniors to graduation isn't going to find a home in preseason national rankings, but Montverde has a lot coming back plus several quality out-of-state transfers. Bottom line: No. 1 Lake Highlands Prep isn't the only Sunshine State power.
24. Chiawana (Pasco, Wash.)
Head coach: Mike Brown | 2019-20: 23-5
Breakdown: Led by Oregon State's prize recruit, Talia Von Oelhoffen, Chiawana is out to erase memories of last year's late-season slump and stake a claim as Washington's best — not to mention a home in the MaxPreps Top 25. To do that, Von Oelhoffen will likely have to improve on her 26.2 points and 9.5 rebounds a game, but she's good enough to make that happen.
25. North Central (Indianapolis)
Head coach: DeeAnn Ramey | 2019-20: 17-10
Breakdown: It's an unusual year, which is why a 10-loss team creeps into the preseason rankings, but the word from Indiana is that North Central will be the state's best — and also plans to travel to Ohio to test itself against some top teams across the border. The key performer is Arizona State-bound Meg Newman, who leads a balanced attack.
Rahsool Diggins of Archbishop Wood (Warminster) is the 2020-21 MaxPreps Pennsylvania High School Basketball Player of the Year. The 6-foot-3 senior guard helped the Vikings go 19-1 en route to the Class 6A state title game.