Prep Zone Power Poll – 2012/2013 Basketball Final Poll

GAINESVILLE – The Providence (Jacksonville) Stallions were the only team in the Prep Zone Power Poll viewing area to bring home a state boys basketball title in 2012-13. For that reason the Stallions are a unanimous number one selection in the final Prep Zone Power Poll for the 2012-13 boys basketball season.

Providence finished 31-1 and defeated Coral Springs Christian 62-56 in last week’s Class 3A championship game at the Lakeland Center. The Stallions were led by one of the top juniors in the state Grayson Allen, who averaged 29 points in two games in Lakeland, including a 31 point effort in the state championship win. It was the second state title in four years for Providence and coach Jim Martin. Providence won the 2A title in 2010 led by current Florida Gator Patric Young and Will Cummings, now with Temple, and Stacey Poole, Jr. now at Georgia Tech.

Providence went wire-to-wire in finishing on top of the boys basketball power poll for the second straight year. The Stallions baseball team also won a state title last spring and finished on top of the baseball power poll as well.

Hawthorne (28-2) advanced to the 1A state semifinals and finished second behind Providence. The Hornets lost to eventual 1A state champion Holmes County, led by future Florida Gator Chris Walker. It was the second consecutive trip to the state semifinals for Hawthorne. The Hornets lost in the 1A state championship game in 2012 to Chipley.

Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) made it’s first state semifinal appearance since 1979 and finished third. The Crusaders (24-7) gave eventual 5A state champion Tampa Jesuit it’s closest game all season in the state semifinals, losing 46-41. In fourth place is the only team in the top six to not make a state semifinal appearance, Father Lopez (Daytona Beach). Providence knocked out Father Lopez (27-3) in the 3A-1 region final 70-52. Palatka (26-5) made it’s second state semifinal appearance in three years, losing 68-49 in the 5A semifinals to American Heritage (Plantation). And Gainesville (21-10) went from unranked in the poll after the district tournament to sixth in the final poll. The Hurricanes won at fourth-ranked Leesburg and top-ranked Edgewater (Orlando) to advance to the 6A state semifinals before losing to eventual state champion Miami Norland 73-50.

Leesburg fell from third to seventh in the final poll behind Gainesville. Ed White (Jacksonville) finished eighth and Ridgeview (Orange Park) was ninth. Both schools made their first ever regional final appearance in boys basketball this season. North Florida Educational Institute (Jacksonville) rounded out the top ten after advancing to the 2A semifinals, losing to eventual state champion Grandview Prep (Boca Raton).

Raines (Jacksonville) led off the second ten after losing in the 4A regional finals to East Gadsden (Havana). Williston moved up from 18th to 16th after losing in the regional final to eventual 4A state champion Lake Highland Prep (Orlando) and the top junior in the state, Joel Berry. Union County (Lake Butler) moved into the poll at number 19 after advancing to it’s second straight 1A state semifinal. The Tigers were eliminated by West Gadsden (Greensboro) 76-51. Eustis also moved into the poll at 17th after advancing to a regional final, losing to Palatka. Suwannee (Live Oak), Bartram Trail (St. Johns), and Forest (Ocala) dropped out from the previous poll.

The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, basketball and baseball teams (regardless of FHSAA classification) across 26 counties in North Florida (Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Citrus, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Duval, Flagler, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lake, Levy, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on weekly by sportswriters and sportscasters.

PREP ZONE POWER POLL – BOYS BASKETBALL FINAL POLL
(School, followed by first-place votes, classification, final record and total voting points)

1. Providence (Jacksonville) (7) (3A) (31-1) – 140
2. Hawthorne (1A) (28-2) – 128
3. Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (5A) (24-7) – 123
4. Father Lopez (Daytona Beach) (3A) (27-3) – 116
5. Palatka (5A) (26-5) – 106
6. Gainesville (6A) (21-10) – 102
7. Leesburg (6A) (24-5) – 91
8. Ed White (Jacksonville) (7A) (22-6) – 81
9. Ridgeview (Orange Park) (6A) (20-9) – 72
10. North Florida Educational Institute (Jacksonville) (2A) (10-21) – 70
11. Raines (Jacksonville) (4A) (23-7) – 68
12. New Smyrna Beach (7A) (22-5) – 57
13. Nature Coast (Brooksville) (5A) (24-4) – 54
14. Wolfson (Jacksonville) (6A) (24-4) – 53
15. Sandalwood (Jacksonville) (8A) (23-5) – 51
16. Williston (4A) (23-8) – 48
17. Eustis (5A) (19-10) – 29
18. West Nassau (Callahan) (4A) (22-5) – 20
19. Union County (Lake Butler) (1A) (17-13) – 18
20. DeLand (8A) (21-8) – 17

Also receiving votes – Suwannee (Live Oak) (5A) (19-7) – 15; St. Francis Catholic (Gainesville) (3A) (23-6) – 3; Hamilton County (Jasper) (1A) (15-11) – 3; First Academy (Leesburg) (2A) (17-9) – 2; Forest (Ocala) (7A) (20-7) – 1; Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (5A) (20-7) – 1; Fort White (4A) (14-6) – 1.