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Preps

Girls basketball: District breakdown


Published:   |   Updated: November 12, 2013 at 10:28 AM

A look at how the teams, top players, and how the districts shape up this season:

Class 8A-7

SCHOOLS: Alonso, Bloomingdale, Newsome, Plant, Riverview and Wharton

OUTLOOK: Newsome will miss Lauren Boerger's 18.6 points and 8.0 rebounds per game this year. The would-be senior guard who was an all-Hillsborough County first-teamer last year moved out of state over the summer. Plant won a district championship and finished 19-8 last season and returns Madelyn Carey, Savannah Walker and Deja Turner, along with the addition of freshman Payton Paro. Riverview advanced to the regionals last year in 7A and returns guards Asia Royster and Selina Guerad and forward Kierra Haywood. Alonso, led by Angel Golden, must fill a void left by Quataisa Fantroy. Carlena Eugene will lead Wharton, while Bloomingdale returns its leading scorer in junior Jacqueline Mayo.

Class 7A-7

SCHOOLS: Brandon, Durant, East Bay, Plant City, Strawberry Crest and Tampa Bay Tech

OUTLOOK: Strawberry Crest and Tampa Bay Tech should battle for the district title, but Plant City could be in the mix. The Chargers finished 20-8 last season and return Aliyah Gregory, who is committed to UCF. Brianna Thomas, a 6-foot-2 center and Division I recruit, will be a force in the paint for Tampa Bay Tech, while forward Shakela Smith and Kirtisha Nelson provide versatility in the backcourt. Plant City features sophomores Shayna Lawrence and Kaylynn Wilkerson and incoming freshman Lacy Hargrove. Juniors Myisha Vincent and Shelby Keely return for Durant, which finished 2-19 last season.

Class 7A-8

SCHOOLS: Freedom, Gaither, Steinbrenner, Sickles and Wiregrass Ranch

OUTLOOK: Freedom advanced to the 7A state final four last season and returns junior guard Taylor Emery, who averaged 20 points per game as a sophomore. Taylor Thigpen, who is headed to Florida Southern next year, will lead the charge for Steinbrenner. Cierra Wheatley, Kassidy Girdler and Desiree Rembert will try to lead Sickles back to the postseason after the Gryphons reached the region final last season.

Class 6A-9

SCHOOLS: Armwood, Blake, Chamberlain, Hillsborough, Jefferson, King, Lennard and Leto

OUTLOOK: Hillsborough will be without sophomore center Trinity Baptiste until January as she recovers from a torn ACL. Until her return, Khoi Wilson and Aejona Chambers will guide the Terriers. Jefferson, under new head coach Mareka Davis, returns five players who averaged double digits in points last season, led by senior Toni Cox (15 points and 5.0 rebounds). Armwood's Kiana King is 86 points shy of reaching 1,000 for her career and will be joined in the Hawks' starting five by Keaundra Ivory and Kiki Newsome.

Class 5A-9

SCHOOLS: Middleton, Robinson and Spoto

OUTLOOK: Robinson will miss guard Deliah Autry, who led the team in points and assists the past two years. Robinson advanced to the 5A region playoffs as a district champion, the program's first title in more than a decade. The Knights later lost in the quarterfinal round. The Spartans went 0-17 last season while Middleton was 3-13.

Class 4A-10

SCHOOLS: Berkeley Prep, Sarasota Booker, Academy of the Holy Names, Sarasota Military Academy and Tampa Catholic

OUTLOOK: Tampa Catholic reached the region semifinals last season as a district champion and will have to move on without Brittany Betts. Dominique Eule is the leading returning scorer for the Crusaders and will be joined by Maria Perdomo and Sofia Reina. Ashley McWilliams averaged 20.8 points per game as a junior last season for Holy Names, which also reached the region tournament as a district runner-up. McWilliams suffered a season-ending knee injury midseason but will have an opportunity to become a 1,000-point scorer by season's end. Senior forward Hayden Johnson will be the focal point for Berkeley Prep.

Class 3A-7

SCHOOLS: Bishop McLaughlin, Brooks-DeBartolo, Carrollwood, Seffner Christian and Tampa Prep

OUTLOOK: Seffner Christian reached the state final four last year for the second straight year. Though 2,000-point career scorer Tesha Hanson graduated, the Crusaders return the bulk of last year's team with senior guard Sabrina Whiting, who will play for Embry-Riddle, and junior guard/forward Peyton Walker. Tampa Prep finished 10-10 last year and advanced to the region quarterfinal as district runner-up.

Class 2A-7

SCHOOLS: Academy at the Lakes, Cambridge Christian, Tampa Bay HEAT and Universal Academy

OUTLOOK: Academy at the Lakes reached the 2A state championship last season and fell to Florida A&M High in the finals. Cambridge Christian advanced to the region quarterfinal as district runner-up. Tampa Bay HEAT and Universal Academy are first-year full members of the FHSAA.

Class 2A-8

SCHOOLS: Bayshore Christian, Canterbury, Citrus Park Christian, Hernando Christian, Keswick Christian and Lakeside Christian

OUTLOOK: Canterbury advanced to the 2A regional quarterfinals last season as a district runner-up. Hernando Christian finished the 2012-2013 season 3-15.

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