The Student News Site of Stratford Academy

Stratford Gazebo

The Student News Site of Stratford Academy

Stratford Gazebo

The Student News Site of Stratford Academy

Stratford Gazebo

Girls & Boys Hoops Reach Title Games

The boys varsity basketball team won the GISA AAA state championship at Mercer University’s Hawkins Arena on Saturday, March 8, defeating the Augusta Prep Cavaliers 61-39 in game that was never in doubt.

Earlier that evening the girls varsity fell to Bulloch Academy in a hard-fought game, 46-29.

The evening marked the first time since 1987 that both the boys and girls basketball teams played in the state championship game. The boys won their last title in 1995; the girls in 2006.

“This past week was just as special as any of them since there’s been sort of a drought for the boys since it’s been 19 years since we even qualified for the Final Four,” Athletic Director and former Head Basketball Coach Grady Smith said.

The Eagles set the tone for the game against the Cavaliers by scoring on an alley-oop on their first possession, with sophomore guard Quintez Cephus dunking off a pass from fellow guard O’Showen Williams.

IMG_3060The Eagles never looked back, and went to the locker room at halftime leading 35-17. Cephus, Stratford’s leading scorer, finished the game with 21 points and 8 rebounds.

“I was proud. We played really hard and tough. We battled throughout the season. We learned that we are bosses and we played to our full potential because we are bosses,” freshman guard Dathan “DJ” Boyd said.

The boys reached the Final Four through stellar play throughout the region and state tournaments, including three decisive victories over rival Tattnall Square Academy. In the region tournament, the boys defeated Tattnall 65-61 on Feb. 20 and Mount de Sales 67-54 on Feb. 21 on their way to a region title.

The Final Four tournaments kicked off at Mercer University Hawkins Arena. Again, the Eagles beat Tattnall 71-50, giving them a spot in the State Championship Game.

Just before the state game, Coach Jamie Dickey took the boys on a journey around the school to reflect back on the season and to motivate them for the upcoming game. They went to the weight room, where workouts began; they also went to the parking lot where they left for team camp; they went to the conference room, where they had their first team meeting; they went to the gym to reflect on their past games; they went to the locker room as well as the trophy room. In the trophy room, everyone put a hand on the 1995 trophy.

“Getting to the state championship game is a reward in itself. It’s a great accomplishment to make it there,” Dickey said.


During the region tournament, the girls beat MDS on 47-18 on Feb. 20. They also beat Tattnall 41-16 on Feb. 21 for the region championship.

“I was excited but knew we still had a lot of work to get to the state game,” junior Lucy Bobbitt, said.

During the state playoffs, the girls defeated Loganville Christian 41-11. They followed up with a win over Pinewood 29-26 on Feb. 26, and defeated Heritage 50-16 on March 7 in the Final Four to earn their spot in the state game.

In the state game, Bulloch jumped out to an early lead — in large part due to Stratford’s 8 turnovers — and was up 14-6 by the end of the first quarter. But Stratford closed the gap to 21-17 by halftime.

But Bulloch expanded its lead in the second half and took home its first state title.

“I am very proud of my team. We made it far and we gave it our all,” Bobbitt said.

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Girls & Boys Hoops Reach Title Games