Girls high school basketball playoffs: Six games headline second-round slate

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Tuesday night is the second round of the girls high school basketball state playoffs. A look at the games involving area teams.

Regional semifinals

Tuesday night, all games at 7 p.m.

Region 1-7A

Oakleaf (22-2) at Spruce Creek (18-5): A challenging first round for both teams. The Knights edged Lake Mary (66-63) and the Hawks clipped Nease (67-63). G Taliah Scott is fresh off of a monster outing against Lake Mary, pouring in 36 points. That’s the second-most points that Scott has scored in a game in her career. Scott had 43 against Orange Park earlier this season. The Knights will need to be more balanced in this one. The winner moves on to Friday’s regional final against either Colonial or Timber Creek.

Region 1-5A

Ponte Vedra (16-6) at St. Augustine (24-1): The third meeting of the season between the district opponents and county rivals. The Yellow Jackets routed Lee (51-17) and the Sharks topped a solid Parker squad (54-44) in the playoff opener. St. Augustine beat Ponte Vedra 47-29 in the regular season, and then edged the Sharks 49-45 in the district championship. Tori Balser had 19 points for Ponte Vedra in the come-from-behind win over Parker. St. Augustine didn’t scorch the nets against Lee (its season average points per game is near 60) but the Yellow Jackets ratcheted up the defensive pressure to choke the offense out of the Generals. Dana Art had 12 points in that game for St. Augustine.

Region 1-4A

Ribault (18-4) at Bishop Kenny (18-9): Another game of the night for the Crusaders, who outlasted Raines in an OT thriller (60-55) in the opener. F Jasmyne Roberts took over in the extra period for Kenny, scoring all eight points to help fend off Raines. The Crusaders led by 17 points in the second half before Raines rallied. Ribault took over in the second half against Bolles in its opener and won 56-38. G Asiana Britt and F Nigeria Harkless are two of the Trojans’ top players. Since coach Charlsea Clark has been at Kenny and Shante Stevens at Ribault, these teams have turned in some epic games in recent years, with a 4-all series. The Trojans won 51-50 in OT this season, 44-38 last season, 54-50 in 2019 and 52-39 in 2018. Kenny won in the 2018 district tourney (50-39) and playoff game (31-28), 2019 district tournament (52-49 in 3 OT) and the 2019 playoff game (56-41).

Region 1-3A

Florida State University High (14-2) at Jackson (13-5): Solid opening rout for the Tigers, who plastered Maclay (65-18) in the first round. G Jazmine Jackson (18 points) led the way in that game. The challenge ramps up in the second round in the way of the Seminoles, who beat Episcopal (59-29) in the playoff opener. G Tonie Morgan enters averaging 20.3 ppg for Florida High.

St. Joseph (20-0) at Master’s Academy (15-7): The Flashes picked up a forfeit win and earned a bye in the first round, so things finally crank up Tuesday for the area’s lone unbeaten. G Jessamy Gaetanos has had a 1,000-point career and has been held under double figures in scoring just once this season, albeit in a running clock game and 49-point victory. Master’s Academy, the state runner-up last season, is a significant step up in competition for the Flashes.

Region 1-2A

North Florida Educational (8-3) at University Christian (9-13): NFEI topped St. Johns Country Day (47-27) in its opener, while UC earned a bye after its opponent couldn’t play. That sets up a rematch of the district championship game, won 46-35 by the Christians. G/W Taijshiah Baldwin (13 ppg) and G/F Kennady Marshall (12.9 ppg) lead UC. C/F Jaidy Mejia (11.2 ppg) and G Laura Gonzalez (10.2 ppg) lead NFEI.

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