Two things are indisputable when it comes to this week’s Cannon County Grammar School County Tournament – East Side’s girls and Woodland’s boys are the teams to beat.
Tournament action begins with first-round games Monday. Semifinals are set for Thursday and the championship and consolation games will be played Saturday. All games are at Cannon County High School.
East Side girls and Woodland’s boys are the overwhelming favorites after sweeping through county competition unscathed during the 2011-12 season.
At the same time, anything is possible at tournament time. Take, for example, the East Side girls, who have enjoyed a remarkable turnaround. After finishing last in the standings a year ago, the Lady Tigers have stormed the competition this season. They are led by Kelli Davis, Katie Hoskins and Haylee Mooneyham.
Woodland’s boys also have answered all challenges and enter the tournament with a perfect record. They have been dominant, particularly in the paint where Austin Martin and Bo Bryson have formed a formidable one-two punch. Don’t discount guards Jared Judkins and John Mark Turney, who help make the Warrior offense go.
Although the top seeds are the clear-cut favorites, there are challenges awaiting as this season has proven there is not a great deal of difference between the second and sixth seeds, which should make for an exciting week of basketball as players compete for their respective coveted championships.
The top two seeds on each side receive first-round byes and advance into the semifinals, which also assure them of at least two games. East Side and West Side, seeded second on the girls side, earned first-round byes, while Woodland and second-seed West Side earned byes on the boys side.
Girls first-round games Monday include No. 4 Short Mountain vs. No. 5 Auburn at 4 p.m., and No. 3 Woodbury Grammar vs. No. 6 Woodland at 6:30 p.m.
Boys first-round games Monday include No. 4 Woodbury Grammar against No. 5 East Side at 5:15 p.m. and No. 3 Auburn vs. No. 6 Short Mountain at 7:45 p.m.
On the girls side, No. 3 Woodbury Grammar faced No. 6 Woodland Monday, and No. 4 Short Mountain played No. 5 Auburn in another first round game. Auburn and Woodland met in last year’s championship game. East Side girls will catch the winner of the Short Mountain-Auburn game Thursday at 6:30 p.m., and West Side will meet the survivor of the Woodbury Grammar-Woodland game Thursday at 4 p.m.
No. 2 West Side will face the winner (3) Auburn/(6) Short Mountain Thursday at 5:15 p.m., and No. 1 Woodland catches the winner of the (4) Woodbury Grammar/(5) East Side showdown Thursday at 7:45 p.m.
The girls championship game is Saturday at 6:30 p.m., followed by the boys title game at 7:45 p.m., at CCHS. Girls consolation game is Saturday at 4 p.m., followed by the boys consolation at 5:15 p.m.