Monday, January 23, 2017

Aiken visits North Augusta in Tuesday's AugBball Game of the Night Double-Header; Bonus Coverage at Butler-Laney and Augusta Prep-John Milledge

Devon Young (left) of Aiken and Tez Collins (right) of North Augusta

AugBball Game of the Night Double-Header (Part 2)
#9 Aiken (16-4, 3-0) at #7 North Augusta (16-3, 2-1)
South Carolina Class AAAA, Region 4

Aiken enters the game as the region's leader after earning home wins over South Aiken and Midland Valley:

Tuesday night's game gives the Hornets the chance to separate themselves from the pack as they are currently being tracked closely by both the Yellow Jackets and South Aiken (11-5, 2-1).

North Augusta looked especially sharp in the two games I've seen, first against Northwood in the championship of the holiday tournament hosted by the Yellow Jackets, and next against Greenbrier in non region action:

The game will have post season implications because 4 of the 5 region teams will advance to the state tournament with the teams' 8 game regular season records deciding the seeding and also which two teams will get to host one or more state tournament games. South Carolina schools do not play region tournaments.

AugBball Game of the Night Double-Header (Part 1)
Aiken (11-7, 2-1) at #1 North Augusta (18-0, 3-0)
South Carolina Class AAAA, Region 4

The Lady Yellow Jackets are the overwhelming favorite. They have been in almost every game this season. In addition to chasing a state title, North Augusta also has a very realistic opportunity to post an undefeated record this season. If they do, they will have earned it, especially after knocking off Laney (Georgia class AA's #1 team) and sweeping pairs of games over Cross Creek (Georgia's class AAAA's #2 team) and Grovetown (Georgia's class AAAAAA's #5 team):

AugBball Bonus Coverage
#4 Laney (4-3) at #5 Butler (7-1) Boys
Class AA, Region 4

The Bulldogs, 7-1 in region play, can essentially wrap up at least a share of first place in the regular season region standings because such an outcome would give Laney its fourth loss. Glenn Hills and Josey have already picked up their fourth losses, and Westside has dropped three. Butler has been the most consistent team in what may be the area's most competitive region. The Bulldogs grabbed a pair of important wins last week, including an overtime victory over rival Glenn Hills:

AugBball Bonus Coverage
#1 Laney at Butler (Girls)
Class AA, Region 4

Laney's only loss came on the season's second day in a close game against North Augusta. And last season's Augusta Chronicle Player of the Year De'sha Benjamin didn't play that night. Since her return, the Lady Wildcats have not been challenged. Tuesday's game may be no different from every other Laney game since November:

AugBball Bonus Coverage
John Milledge (3-1 in region) at Augusta Prep (3-1 in region)

Halfway through the region schedule, Augusta Prep, John Milledge, and Westminster (3-1) have entered what seems like a three team race. Augusta Prep will try to avenge an earlier loss at Milledge and build on last Tuesday's win over rival Westminster (highlights below). First place in the region will be at stake:

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