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Heritage Basketball District Tournament

Heritage Basketball Teams Fall to Rival Pacelli in District Championship Games

Heritage Basketball District Tournament

Ethan Power

February 18, 2024

The Heritage School was selected as host for the GIAA-AAA/AAAA District 5 championship tournament semifinals and finals on Feb. 15-16. The Heritage Basketball teams were both the 2-seeds for the boys and girls tournaments with St. Anne Pacelli as the 1-seed in both tournaments, holding a firm lead in the girls bracket, and having the tie-breaker over the Heritage Boys. 

The Lady Hawks began their bracket play on Thursday with a 40-37 victory over Westfield in the semifinal round. The St. Anne Pacelli girls were decisively victorious in their semifinal game against Brookstone 52-28. The Lady Hawks were looking to cap off their tournament run against rival and #2 ranked Pacelli Lady Vikings.

The Lady Hawks were held to 6 points in the first quarter, which Julia Susla was responsible for all of them. The second and third quarters saw more offense from the Lady Hawks, scoring 19 points, but then were only held to 4 during the final period.

In a defensive game, which has been the case for this matchup all season long, both teams were held under 40, with total scoring being sub-70. Julia Susla (13), Aaliyah Shaffer (10), and Sara Cushing (6) were the only scorers for the Lady Hawks as they gear up for the GIAA Class AAA Playoffs which will begin on February 20 with matchups still to be determined. 

The Boys took part in a chippy district seminfinals game on Thursday and came out victorious 72-40 over the Brookstone Cougars. The Pacelli Vikings completed a rout of Strong Rock in their seminfal game 62-38. Heritage and Pacelli had split the regular season matchups, with the home team winning the previous two games. Heritage hosted the tournament, but being the 2-seed were the designated away team for the game against top-seeded Pacelli.

The Hawks’ offense struggled a little bit, being held under 45 points for only the second time all season, the other being on December 27th against Carrollton. Max Skidmore led the team in scoring with 13 points. Other double digit scorers included Mason Bolinger (11) and Barron Ofosu-Kwarteng (10), with Ian Hall and Sam Mead adding 2 points each to round out the score sheet. 

Both Heritage Basketball teams are still ranked in the top 5 in Class AAA - Boys ranked #1, Girls ranked #4. The Pacelli teams are both ranked near the top in Class AAAA as well with their girls at #2 and their boys in the top spot. Heritage will have a first round BYE , but then will travel to quarterfinal round games which will be played at neutral sites. The boys will face the winner between (8) Deerfield-Windsor vs (9) Southland - the QF game will be at First Presbyterian Day School in Macon on February 24 at 7:30pm. The girls will await the winner between (5) Terrell vs (12) Southland - that QF game will be played at Tattnall Square Academy in Macon on February 23 at 6:00pm. Semifinal games will be played on February 28 at GCSU in Milledgeville. Finals will be hosted by Columbus State on March 1st with girls at 6:20 and boys at 8:00.

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