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Peachtree Ridge To Battle For Region Tourney Title, Defeats North Gwinnett 53-40

Peachtree Ridge defenders guarding the paint against North Gwinnet in region tournament

On Monday, Georgia High School Association basketball region championship tournaments continued and in girls Class 7A, the Peachtree Ridge Lions faced the North Gwinnett Bulldogs in a Region 7 semifinals match up. Having swept the regular season series, the Lions looked for their third win of the season over the Bulldogs, however the task would not be easy for Peachtree Ridge to complete as North Gwinnett would get the best of the Lions early with hustle play to loose balls allowing them to earn second shot opportunities.

While the Bulldogs only led once the entire game, which was during the first quarter, they kept themselves within reach of the Lions as they trailed by no more than five points through the first three quarters of the game. However, Peachtree Ridge would settle and begin to get a firm grip of the game that would result in a strong fourth quarter led by Sanaa Tripp (16 points) who had been dealing with ankle soreness. Heading into the final period, the Lions were holding onto a five point lead but would outscore the Bulldogs 17-9 to close out with a 53-40 win, advancing to the championship round of the region tournament. Aaliyah Hunt would add 14 points in the win.

Understanding the difficulty in defeating a team three time in one season, Peachtree Ridge head coach, Ulysses Haynes decided that his team’s best opportunity in picking up the win would have to include pressing the Bulldogs to help slow their offense. “We’ve played them three times, we know how well they run their stuff, we know how well they shoot the ball so we were trying to press a little bit,” Haynes said after the Lions’ win. Offensively, Haynes said it was just a matter of the Lions “settling in” and letting the game come to them that was key in the fourth quarter. “Not letting one play dictate how they play,” Haynes added.

With the win the Lions will now face Norcross for the region tournament championship on Wednesday. During the regular season, Peachtree Ridge loss both regular season contest to Norcross and Haynes believes that the Lions’ defense will be important to getting the win when they face Norcross as well as making a deep run in the state championship tournament. “Consistently, our defense is keeping us in games, we’re going to have to keep that up,” Haynes said in addition to hoping to see more “continuity” offensively.


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