Previewing Georgia's 5A Second Round State Tournament Bracket

David Viti

The madness continues as we reach the second round of the AAAAA state playoffs here in Georgia. Our staff goes through each game and previews the action. We also make our picks and invite you to do the same. 

THE GAMES 

Eagle’s Landing (22-6) at Warner Robins (23-3) 
Warner Robins hasn't lost in more than a month with all 3 of their losses this season came to teams that are still in contention. All season this group has been lead by a dynamic backcourt of Champ Dawson, Jacolbey Owens and Nelson Phillips. The remaining 2 are college-level prospects while Nelson has already committed to Georgia St. Eagles Landing has won 11 out of their last 12 and have their own dynamic backcourt. Future Mercer guard Brandon Thomas is a deadly as they come from behind the arc while Tee Evans has chipped in his own fair share of impressive totals. - Tai Young
Justin Young’s pick: Warner Robins    
Tai Young’s pick: Warner Robins
Your pick:

Miller Grove (19-7) at Buford (24-4)
Two of the biggest names in Georgia high school hoops get together in a second round match-up and that should be a fun one to watch. The match-ups are great across the board here. The point guard battle will be great (see the bottom of this story). Miller Grove’s 1-2 punch of Maurice Harvey and Lorenzo Anderson will be two of the quickest guards Buford has matched up with. Jermon Clark vs Marcus Watson should be a physical battle. There are a lot of storylines to like here. - Justin Young 
Justin Young’s pick: Buford 
Tai Young’s pick: Buford
Your pick:

Clarke Central (23-6) at Maynard Jackson (25-2) 
Clarke Central, winners of 7 of their last 8, battle a Maynard Jackson teams that hasn’t experienced what it feels like to lose very much this season. Clarke features a balanced attack with several seniors impacting the boxscore. Maynard Jackson’s unit is lead by swing guard Terrance Boykin and senior point man Marquavis Carter. Both teams are in opposite directions of scoring so look for pace to be a determining factor in who walks away with a win. - Tai Young
Justin Young’s pick: Maynard Jackson 
Tai Young’s pick: Maynard Jackson
Your pick: EMBED TWEET 

SW Dekalb (17-11) at Hiram (21-9)
KD Johnson, Eugene Brown and James Glisson - all underclassmen for coach Eugene Brown - have played well beyond their years this season. Now the big test comes with a road game at a hot Hiram team. Johnson is as explosive as any guard in the state while Brown can really shoot. Hiram is anchored by big man Nathan Presnell and the Hornets have good pieces around him with guards Raphael Rogers and Darius Johnson adding support. 
Justin Young’s pick: SW Dekalb 
Tai Young’s pick: SW Dekalb
Your pick:

Statesboro (22-4) at Dutchtown (15-14)
The postseason magic continues for Dutchtown, going from a No. 4 seed in their region tournament to a No. 1 seed in the state, the south Atlanta suburb squad doesn’t want the magic to end. They can thank a lot of the run to 6-7 JR PR Dontay King. The South Carolina move-in has made his impact felt right away. Statesboro, led by the immortal Lee Hill at the helm, will be ready for the road trip to Atlanta. Senior Daniel Cooper is the team's go-to guy. He's averaging nearly 18 points a game in the Blue Devils backcourt. - Justin Young 
Justin Young’s pick: Statesboro  
Tai Young’s pick: Statesboro
Your pick:

Flowery Branch (18-11) at Lithonia (21-6)
Flowery Branch was the author of one of the first round's biggest wins, a 45-44 win over Villa Rica. Their prize? Playing No. 1 seed Lithonia on the road. Justin Quick and company will have their hands full with a stingy, and active, Lithonia defense. The Bulldogs have great length and speed to guard multiple positions. 
Justin Young’s pick: Lithonia   
Tai Young’s pick: Lithonia
Your pick:

Stockbridge (23-6) at New Hampstead (16-7) 
Stockbridge, one of the fastest paced offenses in the country, will make the long trip to Savannah and face a good team with size in New Hampstead. Kavonte Ivery, a Georgia State signee, is a match-up problem on the wing. Guard Terrynce Jackson is jet quick and a terror on the defensive end. While Elijah Austell is a force in the middle. New Hampstead is paced by Roemain Bennett was named Region 2-AAAAA Player of the Year. The jet quick guard is so hard to guard in the open floor while JaReed Riley, a 6-foot-5 forward, makes his presence felt on defense.  
Justin Young’s pick: Stockbridge 
Tai Young’s pick: Stockbridge
Your pick:

Wayne County (14-12) at Starr’s Mill (19-7)
Drew Hudson is a double-double machine, grabbing 18 points and 10 rebounds a game, in his senior season for Starr’s Mill. He’s been a steady force for the Fayetteville school. Wayne County is young, having only one senior that plays a big role on the team. Size, experience and a home crowd may be too tough to overcome in the playoffs. 
Justin Young’s pick: Starr’s Mill 
Tai Young’s pick: Starr’s Mill
Your pick: EMBED TWEET 

NOTABLE PLAYER MATCH-UPS

Alex Jones (Sr. 5-9, Buford) vs TJ Stargell (Sr. 5-11, Miller Grove)

These two point guards are the ones that keep two offenses buzzing for their respective squads. Both can eat up defenses, by getting in the paint and kicking out to their highly capable teammates. Missing the first part of the season did not bother Alex as he caught his stride and walked right into POY honors. TJ is capable of scoring in different ways and has the ability to be a nuisance defensively. Alex committed to Lipscomb in the early signing period while TJ has a long list of suitors. 

Brandon Thomas (Sr. 6-3, Eagles Landing) vs. Nelson Phillips (Sr. 6-5, Warner Robins)

These two prospects decided to keep their talents in state with Thomas going to Mercer and Phillips going to Georgia St. In a matchup that could preview future duels, these two players are capable of filling up the state sheet at a rapid pace. Brandon Thomas has been a specialist from deep while Nelson Phillips can get above the rim as much as anyone in the state. The back and forth in this one should be fun for all. 

Nathan Presnell (Jr, 6-8, Hiram) vs James Glisson, III (Jr. 6-6, SW Dekalb) 

Two of our favorite big men sleepers will go head to head in a nice second round match-up. Presnell was the hero on Saturday night in Hiram’s win over Cedar Shoals. He is athletic, active and entertaining. Glisson will be asked to body up his opposition and play clean up on his terrific guards shot attempts. 

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