The Prep Zone Power Poll powered by Strive Fitness – 2017-2018 Girls’ Basketball Poll #6

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Nease (Ponte Vedra) No. 1 in all-classification regional girls hoops rankings heading into FHSAA regional play

GAINESVILLE — The top-ranked team in The Prep Zone Power Poll for girls basketball can now call themselves district champions.

Following the Class 7A-District 3 title, Nease (Ponte Vedra) remained No. 1 in the all-classification regional rankings heading into the first round of the FHSAA state playoffs.

The Panthers (24-3), who received all six first-place votes, defeated St. Augustine in the championship game, 53-36, to earn home court advantage in tonight’s first-round FHSAA Class 7A regional quarterfinal against Forest (Ocala), which is receiving votes following its district runner-up finish in 7A-District 4.

Nease, which lost to eventual state runner-up Fort Walton Beach in last year’s 7A Region Final, solidified its ranking with wins this season against four teams who are currently ranked in this week’s top 20: No. 3 Spruce Creek (Port Orange), #7 Fleming Island (Orange Park), #8 Ponte Vedra, and #13 Bartram Trail (St. Johns) – twice.Nease Panthers

Fernandina Beach moved up three spots to second.

The Lady Pirates (23-4) defeated Bolles (Jacksonville), which is receiving votes, in last week’s Class 5A-District 3 championship game. They will host Bradford (Starke) tonight in the first round of the 5A state playoffs.

Spruce Creek dropped one spot to third after falling to previous No. 14 Flagler Palm Coast in the 9A-District 1 championship.

The Lady Hawks, who also won at previous No. 15 Atlantic (Port Orange) and defeated 6A No. 4 Bishop Moore (Orlando) in the last week of the regular season, will travel to 9A #10 Lake Mary in a match-up of state-ranked teams. Spruce Creek (22-5) is ranked ninth in 9A according to MaxPreps.

Following the win against Spruce Creek in the district championship game, and wins against previous No. 6 Sandalwood (Jacksonville) in the district semifinals, Flagler Palm Coast made one of the biggest jumps from 14th to fourth.

The Bulldogs (17-5) have only lost once in 2018 – to #2 Fernandina Beach by three on Jan. 6. They also defeated previous No. 4 Ponte Vedra in the regular season finale.

Rounding out the top five is defending 1A state champion Wildwood. The Lady Wildcats (21-6) moved up three spots from eighth following the Class 1A-District 8 title.

Class 7A-District 4 champion Gainesville is ranked sixth, followed by 8A-District 4 runner-up Fleming Island (Orange Park), 6A-District 5 champion Ponte Vedra, 1A-District 7 champion Trenton and 7A-District 5 champion Father Lopez (Daytona Beach) in the top 10.

Class 8A-District 4 champion Bartram Trail (17-10) moves into the rankings, all the way up to No. 13 following wins against previous No. 3 Fleming Island in the district championship game, previous #10 Oakleaf (Orange Park) in the district semifinals, and wins at current #17 First Coast (Jacksonville) and vs. RV Bolles in the final week of the regular season.

Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) is also in the rankings at No. 19.

The Lady Crusaders (16-9) defeated RV Ribault (Jacksonville), 50-39, in the 6A-District 3 championship game. They also had a 41-38 win at previous #4 Ponte Vedra the final week of the regular season.

This will be the last ranking until the FHSAA Girls Basketball state tournament in Lakeland, which is coming up in less than two weeks.

The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 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, Madison, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on weekly by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Strive Fitness.

THE PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2017-2018 GIRLS BASKETBALL POLL #6
(School, followed by classification, first place votes, current record, and total voting points)
1. Nease (Ponte Vedra) (7A) (6) (24-3) – 120
2. Fernandina Beach (5A) (23-4) – 106
3. Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (9A) (22-5) – 100
4. Flagler Palm Coast (9A) (17-5) – 98
5. Wildwood (1A) (21-6) – 94
6. Gainesville (7A) (21-7) – 84
7. Fleming Island (Orange Park) (8A) (23-5) – 83
8. Ponte Vedra (6A) (20-5) – 70
9. Trenton (1A) (24-2) – 69
10. Father Lopez (Daytona Beach) (7A) (23-4) – 68
11. Weeki Wachee (6A) (25-2) – 63
12. P.K. Yonge (Gainesville) (4A) (17-7) – 49
13. Bartram Trail (8A) (17-10) – 36
14T. Newberry (5A) (19-6) – 33
14T. Mainland (Daytona Beach) (7A) (20-7) – 33
16. Lafayette (Mayo) (1A) (19-7) – 30
17. First Coast (Jacksonville) (8A) (18-7) – 29
18. Sandalwood (Jacksonville) (9A) (17-3) – 23
19. Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (6A) (16-9) – 19
20. Oakleaf (Orange Park) (8A) (21-5) – 18
Also receiving votes: Bolles (Jacksonville) (5A) (16-9) – 11; Raines (Jacksonville) (5A) (16-7) – 6; Trinity Catholic (Ocala) (5A) (14-6) – 6; Atlantic (Port Orange) (7A) (18-7) – 4; Forest (Ocala) (7A) (18-7) – 4; East Ridge (Clermont) (8A) (19-7) – 3; Ribault (Jacksonville) (6A) (14-14) – 1.