Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) edges state champion Mainland (Daytona Beach) at the top
GAINESVILLE – The Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) girls basketball team advanced to its fifth straight FHSAA state semifinal this year.
And although the Crusaders (30-2) made it to the Class 4A title game, a late surge by Lake Highland Prep (Orlando), the No. 3 overall team in Florida according to MaxPreps, denied Bishop Kenny of its first state title since 1992.
Bishop Kenny was outscored 28-13 in the fourth quarter and had its 27-game winning streak snapped as the Highlanders won their fourth straight state title.
However, the state runner-up finish was enough for the Crusaders to end up on top of the final all-classification regional rankings.
Bishop Kenny received six of the nine first-place votes and edged Class 5A state champion Mainland (Daytona Beach), 174-172, in total voting points to finish No. 1 in The Prep Zone Power Poll.
It was the first state title in program history for the Bucs (21-8), who held on to beat American Heritage (Plantation), 62-61, for the Class 5A state title.
Mainland moved up seven spots from ninth to second in the final rankings.
Oakleaf (Orange Park), state semifinalists in Class 6A, dropped one spot from second and finished third.
The Knights (26-3) lost to Charlotte (Punta Gorda), 54-47, in the 6A state semifinals.
Hawthorne made the biggest jump in the rankings, moving up 16 spots to No. 4 after winning the Class 1A state title.
The Hornets (15-5) defeated defending 1A state champion Ponce De Leon in the state semifinals and they defeated previous No. 4 Wildwood, 42-38, in the state title game.
The Wildcats (24-2), who had their best record in school history, tumbled four spots to No. 8.
Spruce Creek (Port Orange) rounds out the top five.
The Hawks (23-6) dropped two spots after losing at home to Colonial (Orlando), 61-46, in the 7A-Region 1 Final.
Providence (Jacksonville) leads off the second five at No. 6.
The Stallions (22-6) moved up a couple of spots after advancing to the Class 3A final four. They lost to eventual state champion Miami Country Day, 58-33, in the state semifinals after eliminating previous No. 12 P.K. Yonge (Gainesville), 64-58, in the region final.
Despite the loss, the Lady Blue Wave (16-4) moved up two spots to 10th after a 2-1 mark in regional play.
Class 5A Ridgeview (Orange Park) (22-8) is ranked seventh and 2A state semifinalist St. Johns Country Day (Orange Park) (19-6) finished ninth.
Class 4A Andrew Jackson (Jacksonville) (18-11) fell out of the rankings, while Eustis (16-10), which lost to eventual 4A state champion Lake Highland Prep in the regional semifinals, moved in at No. 20.
The Prep Zone Power Poll ranks the top 20 high school football, girls basketball, boys basketball, softball & 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, Madison, Marion, Nassau, Putnam, Sumter, St. Johns, Suwannee, Taylor, Union & Volusia counties). It is voted on by sportswriters and sportscasters and it is powered by Anytime Fitness of Gainesville.
THE PREP ZONE POWER POLL – 2022-23 GIRLS BASKETBALL POLL #7 (FINAL POLL)
(School, followed by classification, first-place votes, current record, and total voting points)
1. Bishop Kenny (Jacksonville) (4A) (6) (30-2) – 174
2. Mainland (Daytona Beach) (5A) (3) (21-8) – 172
3. Oakleaf (Orange Park) (6A) (26-3) – 155
4. Hawthorne (1A) (15-5) – 137
5. Spruce Creek (Port Orange) (7A) (23-6) – 136
6. Providence (Jacksonville) (3A) (22-6) – 126
7. Ridgeview (Orange Park) (5A) (22-8) – 123
8. Wildwood (1A) (24-2) – 122
9. St. John’s Country Day (Orange Park) (2A) (19-6) – 118
10. P.K. Yonge (Gainesville) (3A) (16-4) – 95
11. Bolles (Jacksonville) (4A) (19-10) – 88
12. Nease (Ponte Vedra) (6A) (20-7) – 75
13. North Florida Educational Institute (Jacksonville) (2A) (16-9) – 72
14. Ribault (Jacksonville) (4A) (15-8) – 64
15. Gainesville (6A) (15-8) – 57
16. Ponte Vedra (6A) (15-10) – 48
17. Lake Minneola (6A) (19-6) – 31
18. University Christian (Jacksonville) (2A) (13-6) – 24
19. West Port (Ocala) (7A) (19-7) – 15
20. Eustis (4A) (16-10) – 14
Also receiving votes: Andrew Jackson (Jacksonville) (4A) (18-11) – 13, Mount Dora Christian Academy (2A) (21-7) – 11; Newberry (1A) (22-6) – 7; Mandarin (Jacksonville) (7A) (14-10) – 6; Trinity Catholic (Ocala) (3A) (16-11) – 6; St. Augustine (5A) (18-8) – 1.