JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The News4Jax girls basketball Super 6 poll will be published each Thursday through the end of the regular season. The poll includes only teams in the Florida High School Athletic Association. Records are through Jan. 8 games.
Rank, Previous, School, Record, Classification
1. (1) Raines (18-1), Class 4A
Notable wins: Banneker (Washington, DC), Bartram Trail, Colonial, Florida A&M, Middleburg, P.K. Yonge, Port Orange Atlantic, Ribault, Sandalwood, Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart (Bethesda, Maryland), St. Laurent (Manitoba).
The Vikings continue to thunder along, running their winning streak to 15 games with a 2-0 week since our last Super 6. Raines beat P.K. Yonge (59-39) and Lee (71-39). Coach Julius Paden’s squad is crushing teams night after night, winning by an average of 30.4 points per game. Raines is averaging 62.1 ppg while allowing 31.7. If last season was the foray into being a legitimate state title contender, then 2020 is when it could all come together for Raines. Nyla Allen (13.5 ppg), Ahliah Brown (12.6 ppg) and Jamicia Davis (10.3 ppg) continue to power Raines.
2. (5) Ribault (15-6), Class 4A
Notable wins: Apopka, Bishop Kenny, Creekside, Flagler Palm Coast, Middleburg, Orange Park, Parker, West Oaks.
After dropping games to Wekiva and Palm Bay Heritage, Ribault surged back to beat a pair of Super 6 teams, previous No. 2 Creekside (53-47) and No. 4 Bishop Kenny (44-38), the latter in what has been one of the area’s tightest rivalry the last two seasons. Tough stretch to close, too, with a game at Bolles on Thursday night, followed by the Gateway tournament and then Sandalwood and University Christian to end the regular season. Asiana Britt (10.3 ppg) is the only Trojans player averaging double figures in scoring, but this lineup goes seven deep.
3. (3) Bolles (12-3), Class 4A
Notable wins: Bishop Kenny, Christ Church Episcopal (SC), Gulf Coast, Parker.
The Bulldogs went 2-1 at the She Got Game tournament in Atlanta last week, beating Christ Church Episcopal (77-61) and Pace Academy (Atlanta), 49-37, and losing to Hillgrove (Powder Springs, Ga.), 57-52. Like quite a few teams in our Super 6, Bolles has a challenging finish to the regular season. The Bulldogs are ranked fourth in Region 1-4A (remember, the playoffs are structured differently this year, with a points rating determining seeds outside of district champs) and will likely face Bishop Kenny in the district championship for a top four seed in a brutal region for local contenders.
4. (NR) Middleburg (9-5), Class 5A
Notable wins: Creekside, Ocala Vanguard, Sandalwood, Tallahassee Lincoln, West Oaks.
The Broncos are 2-0 since our last Super 6, with wins over West Oaks (52-50) and a high quality 62-49 win over previous No. 6 Sandalwood. Britany Range turned in a career-high 38 points against the Saints. She was 14 for 14 from the free throw line in that game, too. Skylar Baltezegar added a double-double for the Broncos (15 points, 14 rebounds) in what is probably the Broncos’ second-biggest win of the season. Their win over Lincoln remains Middleburg’s best. The Broncos are third in Region 1-5A and should be in line for a district championship appearance, likely against Orange Park, Parker or Lee.
5. (T-6) University Christian (14-0), Class 2A
Notable wins: Bradford, Hawthorne, Lee, Oakleaf, Palatka.
The Christians won their toughest match of the season on Jan. 3, a 51-49 victory over a solid Oakleaf team. And UC closes strong, starting with a Friday night game at Middleburg. Rhiana Youmans (15.9 ppg) and Taijhshiah Baldwin (15.5 ppg) are the top scorers on UC and they are going to be tested nightly from here on out.
(tie) 6. (4) Bishop Kenny (8-5), Class 4A
Notable wins: Middleburg, Orange Park, Palm Bay, Port Orange Atlantic, St. Cloud, Sandalwood, Southwest DeKalb.
Kenny hangs on in the Super 6 this week, despite going 1-3 since our last poll. The Crusaders lost to McEachern (Powder Springs, Ga.), 64-55, Legacy Early College (SC), 39-36 and Ribault (44-38). They beat Southwest DeKalb (Decatur, Ga.), 55-51. The Crusaders’ record needs to be measured differently than others with better records. Kenny is 5-2 against local teams and has played the most challenging schedule in the area, according to the FHSAA strength of schedule rating. Their two toughest games remaining are at Flagler Palm Coast on Friday and at home against Spruce Creek on Jan. 28.
(tie) 6. (2) Creekside (10-3), Class 6A
Notable wins: Atlantic Coast, Episcopal, Parker, St. Augustine.
Creekside’s winning streak ended at eight games with losses to a solid Ocala West Port (61-51) and Ribault (53-47) at the Moramarco Shootout at Flagler Palm Coast. They bounced back with a win over First Coast (55-43). They’ve got a very challenging stretch coming up, starting with a home game on Friday against Bolles. The only games against sub-.500 teams remaining are at rival Bartram Trail on Jan. 17 and a season finale against Gainesville Buchholz.
Dropped out: Sandalwood (10-8, Class 7A).
On the bubble: Bradford (9-4, Class 4A), Columbia (13-3, Class 6A), Episcopal (9-4, Class 3A), Flagler Palm Coast (12-3, Class 7A), Interlachen (10-4, Class 3A), Lee (10-5, Class 5A), Mandarin (8-3, Class 7A), Nease (8-6, Class 7A), Oakleaf (10-6, Class 7A), Orange Park (10-4, Class 5A), Parker (8-5, Class 5A), Providence (8-6, Class 3A), St. Augustine (9-2, Class 5A), Sandalwood (10-8, Class 7A), St. Joseph (10-3, Class 2A).