Note: Records are as of Dec. 17
1. Forest Hills (5-1)
Previous ranking: No. 1
Marvin Ridge shocked Forest Hills with a 63-56 win Dec. 11, snapping a four-game win streak. However, the loss seemed to refocus the Yellow Jackets, who came away with a 72-44 win over Concord on Dec. 15. behind 16 points from Jai Rorie 16, 14 from Trey Belin and 11 apiece from Nas Tyson and Jaleel McLaughlin.
2. Piedmont (6-2)
Previous ranking: No. 2
The Panthers have rebounded from a two-game slide by knocking off Monroe (69-43 on Dec. 12) and on the road at Cuthbertson (64-56 on Dec. 15). Clemson commit Hunter Tyson poured in 28 points in the win over the Cavs, and the Panthers got 17 points from Trip Fesmire. The Panthers are as dangerous as any county team, especially when Tyson doesn’t have to do all of the heavy lifting by himself.
3. Marvin Ridge (7-3)
Previous ranking: No. 7
After a 1-3 start, the Mavs have reeled off six consecutive wins including marquee victories over Piedmont and Forest Hills. Most recently the Mavs dominated Parkwood 82-49 behind double-digit scoring performances from Harrison Brown (17), Garrett Bohannon (15) and 13 apiece from Connor Ryan and Wes Storie. Ryan and Brown average double figures, but seven Mavs score 4.5 points per game or more.
4. Monroe (3-2)
Previous ranking: No. 5
The Redhawks have alternated wins and losses this season through five games and are looking for a little consistency, but they can be very good when they’re on. Coming off a 26-point loss to Piedmont on Dec. 12, Monroe got 30 points – including four 3-pointers – from sophomore Salen Streater to take down Sun Valley 68-56 three days later. Tyshon Houston added 12 points and Traevon Kennion had 10 points in the win.
5. Sun Valley (4-4)
Previous ranking: 4
The Spartans came out of the gates hot with a 4-1 start that surprised a lot of people, especially considering what the Spartans and coach Keith Mason lost to graduation. Now, after losses to Cuthbertson, Weddington and Monroe in consecutive games, Sun Valley is looking to right the ship. They have plenty of talent, and Mason will not let youth be an excuse, but the Spartans need to turn things around soon.
6. Porter Ridge (4-4)
Previous ranking: Not ranked
The Pirates took blowout losses to Southwestern 4A powerhouses Independence and Butler in back-to-back games, but got back on track and .500 on the season with a 75-61 win over Garinger on Dec. 15. The Pirates have been a bit streaky to this point and will need to be much more consistent if they want to secure one of the top four spots in the Southwestern 4A.
Previous ranking: No. 6
The Warriors have dropped two of three, with a one-point win over Monroe sprinked in the mix. The 31-point loss to Charlotte Catholic on Dec. 15 is a bit alarming, but Chase Dixon, Charles Pinner and their Warrior mates will look to get things turned around, although Weddington’s next five games include tilts with Myers Park, Marvin Ridge and Piedmont.
Dropped out: Metrolina Christian (7-6)