Several DeKalb teams reached GHSA Elite Eight
DeKalb will be represented by six teams in the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) High School Basketball Playoffs’ Elite Eight.
High school teams from Arabia Mountain (girls), Cedar Grove (boys), Columbia (boys), Greenforest (boys), Marist (girls), and St. Pius X Catholic (boys) won their Sweet 16 games on Feb. 24 and Feb. 25, advancing to the Elite Eight – which will be played Feb. 28 and March 1.
Local teams that advance to the Final Four will play at neutral sites around Georgia. If it wins, Arabia Mountain will play at University of West Georgia on March 3 at 2 p.m.; Cedar Grove will play at Fort Valley State University on March 3 at 4 p.m. if it advances; Columbia will travel to Georgia College and State University on March 4 at 8 p.m. if it makes the Final Four; Greenforest will play at Valdosta State University of March 4 at 4 p.m. with a win; Marist will play at University of West Georgia on March 4 at 8 p.m. with an Elite Eight win; and St. Pius will play at University of West Georgia on March 4 at 8 p.m. if it advances to the Final Four.
Cedar Grove pulled off an upset of 1-seed Monroe Area High School to advance to the Elite Eight.
A big fourth quarter helped the No. 7 ranked Cedar Grove Saints pull away from No. 4 Monroe Area for a 62-55 Class 3A boys’ Sweet 16 victory at Monroe.
The two Top 10 ranked teams battled to a 45-45 tie after three quarters of play when the Saints (18-9) took control to outscore the Purple Hurricanes (24-5) 17-10 to advance to the Elite Eight.
Cedar Grove went on a 9-2 run to open the fourth quarter to go up 54-47 behind the play of Eric Colson (two fourth-quarter three-pointers) and Manny Green (six fourth quarter points).
Jayden Adside led the Saints with 21 points and four assists while Colson contributed 20 points and five rebounds. Green put together a double-double of 17 points and 12 rebounds with two blocks.
Cedar Grove hosted Long County (20-11) in the Elite Eight.
It is the Saints 12th time to win the first two state playoffs games. Cedar Grove will try to reach the semifinals for the first time since the 2016 season.
Arabia Mountain and Columbia also advanced to the Elite Eight with wins during the Sweet 16 weekend.
A 22-point fourth quarter eruption propelled the Arabia Mountain Lady Rams to a 52-36 victory over the Jones County Greyhounds in the GHSA Class 5A girls’ Sweet 16 high school basketball game at Arabia Mountain on Feb. 24.
Myori Pruitt hit for 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds to lead Arabia Mountain in the win. She became DeKalb’s first ever girls’ player to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists and 500 steals for her career. Malaya Jones finished with 15 points, and Lauren Chavis chipped in 11 more.
Four Columbia Eagles reached double figures as the home team Eagles flew out to a 43-27 halftime lead in an 83-49 blowout win over the Union County Panthers in a Class 2A Sweet 16 game at Columbia on Feb. 24.
Rashad Headges scored 17 points, Jaden Bough hit for 16, Kevin Bruce scored 11, and Trevian Callaway notched 10 points.
GHSA Elite Eight games that feature DeKalb teams are:
Class 5A Girls
Arabia Mountain (26-2) at Calhoun (24-4), 6 p.m.
Class 6A Girls
River Ridge (24-5) at Marist (26-2), 6 p.m.
Class 6A Boys
Etowah (21-8) at St. Pius X Catholic (24-5), 7 p.m.
Class 3A Boys
Long Co. (20-11) at Cedar Grove (18-9), 6 p.m.
Class 2A Boys
Columbia (29-1) at Windsor-Forest (23-6), 6:00 pm
Class 1A Boys
Calhoun County (25-4) at Greenforest (19-7), 7 p.m.
Mark Brock contributed to this article.