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20 Unbeaten Teams, 7 defending champions In Field as AHSAA State Football Playoffs Begin

     MONTGOMERY – All seven defending state football champions and 20 unbeaten teams are among the 208-team state playoff field announced by the Alabama High School Athletic Association Saturday morning.
     The state football playoffs get underway Thursday night, Nov. 3, with two Class 6A first-round games, and 102 games are scheduled for Friday, Nov. 4. All contests are scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m.
     State champions will be crowned in seven classifications with 32 schools competing in Classes 1A through 6A through five rounds of play, and 16 competing in four playoff rounds in Class 7A. The ultimate goal of each is to compete in the Super 7 State Football Finals at Auburn University’s Jordan-Hare Stadium Nov. 30-Dec. 2.
      The playoffs began in 1966 with just four teams competing for the Class 4A state title. The playoffs expanded to four classifications in 1967, to six in 1984 and seven in 2014. This will be the third year of competition in seven classes.
       This year’s playoffs mark the 51th anniversary of the AHSAA’s storied playoff completion. One school, Sidney Lanier, competed in the first playoff in 1966 that featured four schools and will be in the field for the 2016 playoffs.
        AHSAA TV partner Raycom Media will for the second straight year telecast the Raycom / AHSAA Playoff Game of the Week over the next four weeks, culminating with Raycom televising all seven state championship games at Auburn. Next Friday’s Game of the Week will be Auburn (7-3) versus Davidson (9-1) in  Class 7A first-round battle at Ladd-Peebles Stadium at 7 p.m. Coach Fred Riley’s Warriors will be home team finishing second to McGill-Toolen Catholic in Region 1. McGill beat Davidson 39-36 in overtime
       The seven defending state champions include Class 1A Maplesville (9-0); Class 2A Elba (8-2); Class 3A Piedmont (10-0); Class 4A Leeds (8-2); Class 5A St. Paul’s Episcopal (7-3);  Class 6A Spanish Fort (8-2); and Class 7A McGill-Toolen (10-0).
    Piedmont head coach Steve Smith notched the 200th win of his prep coaching career earlier this season, His Bulldogs won the AHSAA’s current longest football winning streak (20) heading into the 3A playoffs. McGill-Toolen, coached by Caleb Ross, has a 19-game winning streak and Maplesville, coached by Brent Hubbert, is currently riding an 18-game streak.
   In addition, 17 other unbeaten schools head into the state playoffs including Carroll-Ozark (10-0). The Eagles, coached by Roger McDonald, finished 10-0 in the regular season for the first time since 1930 after going just 1-9 in 2014.  Class 4A Rogers (10-0), coached by Randall Martin, recorded its first unbeaten regular season in school history.
   Montgomery’s newest high school Park Crossing, coached by Smitty Grider, is undefeated a 10-0 in just its third season.
  Unbeaten teams by class in the playoffs include: (Class 1A) Maplesville (9-0); Georgiana (10-0), Linden (10-0), Wadley (9-0), Addison (10-0); (Class 2A) G.W. Long (9-0); Fyffe (10-0); LaFayette (10-0); (Class 3A) Gordo (10-0); Piedmont (10-0); (Class 4A) Rogers (10-0); Class 5A: Carroll (10-0); Scottsboro (10-0); (Class 6A) Park Crossing (10-0); Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa (10-0); Oxford (10-0); (Class 7) McGill-Toolen Catholic (10-0); and Hewitt-Trussville (10-0).
        The NFHS Network plans to live-stream selected games each week with several member schools planning to live-stream contests over the NFHS Network School Broadcast Program as well.
       All games will be listed at www.ahsaa.com as well www.nfhsnetwork.com. More than 50 first-round games are expected to be broadcast by local radio stations as well. The AHSAA Radio Network will also host a statewide scoreboard show during the state playoffs. Check the AHSAA website for more details.
    Second-round playoff games are scheduled for Friday, Nov. 11, followed by the quarterfinals on Nov. 18, the semifinals Nov. 25.


John Carroll Catholic Forfeits 2 Football Wins

John Carroll Catholic High School has been fined, placed on probation for one year and ordered to forfeit two varsity football wins for violating the AHSAA eligibility rules. The school self-reported the violation.

John Carroll played an ineligible student in violation of the AHSAA Overlapping School Zones Rule found on page 35 of the 2016-17 AHSAA Handbook, which states a student that transfers from a school within overlapping school zones is ineligible for one year at the new school. The school must forfeit all contests its team won in which the student participated. Forfeits include victories over Moody and Springville high schools.

The probationary period is a warning that other violations of this nature could bring further sanctions against the school.


Class 1A State Championship

Addison 3, Decatur Heritage 2
    
Addison and Decatur Heritage squared off in the Class 1A state championship match Thursday night in the final contest of the 46th AHSAA State Volleyball Tournament and saved their best for last.
    The Bulldogs(43-19) scraped out as 23-25, 25-23, 26-24, 20-25, 15-6 victory over the Eagles (46-11) to claim their ninth volleyball title in school history – and also notched fourth title in a row. Coach Kayla Woodard’s team won the 2A title last year before moving to Class 1A this season.
      Abbie Chambless had 20 kills and 35 digs in the finals to earn Class 1A state tournament MVP honors for the Bulldogs. Allie Chambless had 13 kills, Savannah Manley had 11 and MaKenzie Berry 10 as Addison totaled 59 in the grueling five-setter.   Cecilee Gaither had 39 assists and 19 digs, and Maison Evans had 31 digs. Manley and Evans also had three service aces each.
     Leading Coach Kelly Garland’s Eagles was middle hitter Kayla Grimes. The 6-foot-1 senior had 34 kills. Kaitlyn Cheatham had 42 assists and 20 digs and teammates Maggie Holsclaw and Cassidty Cheatham had 31 and 32 digs, respectively. Decatur Heritage finished the contest with 141 digs.

 Class 1A All-Tourney Team
   
Abbie Chambless, Addison (MVP); Savannah Manley, Addison; Maison Evans, Addison; Allie Chambless, Addison; Kayla Grimes, Decatur Heritage; Hope Gladish, Decatur Heritage; Maggie Holsclaw, Decatur Heritage.   

Class 3A State Championship

Bayside Academy 3, Providence Christian 0
    
Bayside Academy extended its consecutive state volleyball championship streak to 15 Thursday night beating Providence Christian 25-23, 254-13, 25-18 in the finals of the 46th AHSAA State Volleyball Tournament. Coach Ann Schilling’s Admirals (57-7) have now won
the last nine Class 3A state titles (2008-2016) and had six straight Class 2A championships from 2002-2006. Bayside has won a state-record 25 state championships overall dating back to 1981.
     Senior Ariel Dulaney had 14 kills, four service aces and seven digs to lead Bayside in the finals.  Named the MVP of the 3A state tourney, Dulaney also recorded the 1,500th kill of her high school career in the championship match.
     Lauren Chastang, the MVP in 2015, added nine kills and nine digs and setter Ansleigh Dailey had 27 assists.
     Providence Christian (45-9), coached by Bill Oldfield, was paced by senior Hannah Harris’ 16 kills. Ashlyn Byrd had 20 assists and Kennedy Raffle had 10 digs. The Eagles and Admirals met in the South Super Regional finals last week – a match won by Bayside in five grueling sets. Providence Christian, which moved from 2A to 3A this season, won the Class 2A state championship in back-to-back years (2011 and 2012).
    Class 3A All-Tourney Team
   
Ariel Dulaney, Bayside Academy (MVP); Lauren Chastang, Bayside Academy; Ansleigh Dailey, Bayside Academy; Hannah Harris, Providence Christian; Kennedy Raffle, Providence Christian; Jada Terry, West Morgan; Molly Kate Atkins, Carbon Hill.    

Class 6A State Championship

Hazel Green 3, Spanish Fort 0
   
Hazel Green’s Lady Trojans downed defending champion Spanish Fort in a grueling 25-21, 25-23, 25-23 championship match Thursday afternoon to capture the school’s first state volleyball championship since 1994 – a 22-year drought. The match at the Birmingham CrossPlex Bill Harris Arena finished the Trojans’ season at 56-10.
         Coach Coco Tate Hughes was a member of that 1994 team that a 5A state championship.
         Senior Brooke Sanford registered 14 kills and 16 digs to earn MVP honors for Hazel Green. Gracie Lynn Butler and Tierra Porter had 12 kills each and Maci Battle had 10. The Trojans finished the match with 49.  Setter Lauren Lasater dished out 45 assists and 12 digs.
        Spanish Fort (58-5), coached by Gretchen Boykin, got strong efforts from Savannah Lee and Carley Hamric. The duo had 14 and 11 kills, respectively. Reilly Vought had 30 assists he was elated to be the coach that brought another championship[It took 22 years but the Mountain Brook downed Hoover 25-11, 23-25, 25-12, 25-19 Thursday afternoon at the Birmingham CrossPlex Bill Harris Arena to claim the AHSAA Class 7A state volleyball championship for the third year in a row. The Lady Spartans (44-8) of Coach Haven O’Quinn have won the title all three years and 12 digs and Taylor Fontenelle had 17 digs.
      Hazel Green now has seven state championships. The first six were coached by AHSAA Hall of Fame coach Glenda Wright, who finished her coaching career with 1,458 match wins.  She was on hand to Thursday to support her longtime school and prize pupil.
      Boykin, who played at McGill-Toolen for Becky Dickinson, the first volleyball coach to be inducted into the AHSAA Sports Hall of Fame. Dickinson retired with 1,273 victories and 16 state titles.
   Finals for Classes 3A and 1A were still to be completed Thursday afternoon.
   All championship matches of the 46th annual AHSAA State Volleyball Championships are being live-streamed over the NFHS Network.
    Class 6A All-Tourney Team
   
Brooke Sanford, Hazel Green (MVP);  Maci Battle, Hazel Green; Lauren Lasater, Hazel Green; Tierra Porter, Hazel Green; Gracie Lynn Butler, Hazel Green; Savannah Lee, Spanish Fort; Carley Hamric, Spanish Fort.
    

Class 7A State Championship

Mountain Brook  3, Hoover 1
   
Mountain Brook downed Hoover 25-11, 23-25, 25-12, 25-19 Thursday afternoon at the Birmingham CrossPlex Bill Harris Arena to claim the AHSAA Class 7A state volleyball championship for the third year in a row. The Lady Spartans (44-8) of Coach Haven O’Quinn have won the title all three years since the seven-classification was instituted in 2014.
    Outside hitter Emmy Kilgore, who played a major role in the 2014 and 2015 championship seasons for the Spartans, provided strong senior leadership for the 2016 team to earn 7A state tourney MVP. She had 15 kills, three service aces and 13 digs in an outstanding performance in the final match. Caroline Davies added 10 kills, Lacey Jeffcoat managed 25 digs and setter Libby Grace Gann had 40 assists and 10 digs.
    Hoover (39-15), coached by Chris Camper, was led by senior Kyra Hunter’s 13 kills and four block assists. Grace Harris recorded 27 assists, Nora Webster had eight kills and nine digs and Olivia Portera had 14 digs for the Lady Bucs.
   Finals for Classes 6A, 3A and 1A were still to be completed Thursday afternoon.
   All championship matches of the 46th annual AHSAA State Volleyball Championships are being live-streamed over the NFHS Network.
    Class 7A All-Tourney Team
   
Emmy Kilgore, Mountain Brook (MVP); Lacey Jeffcoat, Mountain Brook; Caroline Davies, Mountain Brook; Kyra Hunter, Hoover; Nora Webster, Hoover; Sabrina Duncan, Huntsville; Kenya McQuirter, McGill-Toolen.
   

Class 4A State Championship

Madison Academy  3, Saint James 0
   
Madison Academy  downed Saint James 27-25, 25-20, 25-21 in the 46th annual AHSAA Class 4A State Volleyball tournament finals Thursday to clinch the school’s second volleyball championship overall the first since 2004 .
    Coach Mandy Kerce’s Mustangs (45-20), moving up from Class 3A this season, got strong performances from Macy Moore and Abby Brooks, who had 12 and 10 kills, respectively. Brooks, named the Class 4A state tournament MVP, also had 13 digs. Erin Eisenhart recorded 24 digs and Sydney Chandler had 20 assists.
    Saint James (35-11), coached by Karen Lee, forced the first set to go 27-25, and while they battled in each of the final two sets, the Trojans could never quite get the upper hand in what was a well-played match by both teams.  Hannah Dailey had 10 kills, Carson Ann Crow had nine and Lindsey Sampson had 14 digs for the Trojans. Emily Poundstone had 15 assists and Samantha White added 14.
     The Class 4A finals was the third of seven to be played Thursday as the 46th annual AHSAA State Volleyball Championships concludes the 2016 season. All matches are being live-streamed over the NFHS Network.
    Class 4A All-Tourney Team
   
Abby Brooks, Madison Academy (MVP); Macy Moore, Madison Academy; Hannah Dailey, Saint James; Carson Ann Crow, Saint James; Mikayla Loins, Danville; Sierra Stone, Jacksonville.   

Class 5A State Championship

St. Paul’s Episcopal 3, Alexandria 0
   
The Saints clawed out a 28-26, 25-21, 25-13 win over Alexandria at Bill Harris Arena to capture the Mobile school’s 16th AHSAA state volleyball title since claiming their first in 1976.
    Coach Lisa Marston’s Saints (47-4) limited the Valley Cubs (48-10) kept squeezed out the two-point win in the first set and worked to keep the strong arms of Coach Whitney Welch’s front line from gaining any long stretches of momentum in the final two sets. 
    Class 5A state tourney MVP Parker Canada was a big reason with 13 kills and 11 digs for St. Paul’s. Mary S. Hollingsworth also had 19 digs and Konner Wilks had 15. Lily Myers and Katie Albrecht also had 14 assists each.
    Alexandria’s Taylor Spradley had 11 kills, Gracie Muncher had 27 assists and 10 digs and Kinsley Gregoria had 22 digs.
     The state title for St. Paul’s was its first since 2014 and the first under Marston’s direction.
    The Class 5A finals was the second of seven to be played Thursday as the 46th annual AHSAA State Volleyball Championships concludes the 2016 season. All matches are being live-streamed over the NFHS Network.
    Class 5A All-Tourney Team
   
Parker Canada, St. Paul’s Episcopal (MVP); Konner Wilks, St. Paul’s Episcopal; Mary S. Hollingsworth, St. Paul’s Episcopal; Tori Rae Stillwell, Alexandria; Taylor Spradley, Alexandria; Catelynn Howell, Alexandria; Rachel Green, St. John Paul II Catholic.

18 AHSAA Events Slated for NFHS Network Raycom / AHSAA Game of the Week Features James Clemens at Austin

       MONTGOMERY – Raycom Media will televise James Clemens High School at Austin tonight at Decatur’s Shorty Ogle Stadium in the final Raycom / AHSAA regular-season Game of the Week. Raycom will feature a state playoff each of the next four weeks leading up to all seven AHSAA Super 7 state championship games at Auburn Nov. 30-Dec. 2.
     The NFHS Network plans 18 AHSAA events tonight and Friday with one swimming match live-streamed by the Cullman High School School Broadcast Program and 17 football games.
    James Clemens heads into tonight’s game locked in a three-way tie with Bob Jones and Gadsden City for the second playoff slot in Region 8 for the upcoming Class 7A state playoffs. A win over Austin, the Class 6A, Region 8 champion, would clinch the tie breaker and No. 2 qualifier for Coach Wade Waldrop’s team. A loss would give the No. 2 qualifier to Bob Jones. All three 7A, Region 8 teams are in the playoffs, however, behind Region 8 champion Hewitt-Trussville.
    The NFHS Network also plans to live-stream 25 total events including 23 football games Friday – five designated as NFHS Network Alabama Games of the Week.
      Raycom Media’s broadcast team features veteran play-by-play announcer Graham Dunn, color commentator Mike Peacock and sideline reporter Christina Chambers. Raycom will also televise live the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game at Cramton Bowl on Dec. 10. The playoff game to be telecast will be announced each week.
     To find the cable channel serving your area, go to www.pathwaytotheplayoffs.com or go to www.ahsaa.com and click on the Raycom link.

NFHS SLATE INCLUDES 17 FOOTBALL GAMES
   
The NFHS Network announced earlier this week four games designated as NFHS Network “Alabama Games of the Week.” Those include: Class 7A Thompson vs. unbeaten Class 6A Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa tonight; Central-Clay County vs. Handley; Chelsea vs. Calera; and Grayson (GA) vs. Hoover, all on Friday. Hoover’s game will also be featured on ESPN.
    Friday’s slate includes 17 games total.
     Those with NFHS Network subscriptions can tune in to any of these football contests. For more information and instructions on how to subscribe, go to www.ahsaa.com and then click on the NFHS Network icon on the front page of the website or go to www.nfhsnetwork.com.


RARAYCOM / AHSAA GAME OF THE WEEK (check www.pathtotheplayoffs.com for cable channel)
JaJames Clemens (6-3) at Austin (7-2), Ogle Stadium, Decatur, 7 p.m.


NFHS NETWORK SCHEDULE OF AHSAA SCHOOL BROADCAST PROGRAM EVENTS (THURSDAY AND FRIDAY Oct. 27-28

Date/Time

Event

Producer

URL

Swimming

Thurs. - 4:30 PM

Cullman Swimming

Cullman HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/cullman-high-school-cullman-al/15c99dac57

Football

Oct 27 - 6:30 PM

Thompson vs. Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa

Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/hillcresttuscaloosa-high-school-tuscaloosa-al/ff840befd7

Oct 27 - 6:30 PM

B.C. Rain vs. Saraland

Saraland HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/saraland-high-school-saraland-al/a2532ca0a3

Oct 27 - 7:00 PM

Deshler vs. Muscle Shoals

Muscle Shoals HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/muscle-shoals-high-school-muscle-shoals-al/2184a9bb54

Oct 28 - 6:45 PM

West Point vs. Lawrence County

Lawrence County HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/lawrence-county-high-school-monticello-al/5a9f3eedf4

Oct 28 - 7:20 PM

Foley vs. Theodore

Foley HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/foley-high-school-foley-al/f2c288add2

Oct 28 - 6:30 PM

New Brockton vs. Sweet Water

Sweet Water HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/sweet-water-high-school-sweet-water-al/955e8092be

Oct 28 - 6:30 PM

Prattville Christian vs. Highland Home

TriCounty Sports

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/tricounty-sports-montgomery-al/6b3246a52d

Oct 28 - 6:30 PM

Central High vs. Handley

Eagle 102.3

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/eagle-1023/28748a540d

Oct 28 - 6:40 PM

Brooks vs. Lauderdale County

Brooks HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/brooks-high-school-killen-al/d38af310f7

Oct 28 - 6:50 PM

Grayson vs. Hoover

Hoover HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/hoover-high-school-hoover-al/d569bcf443

Oct 28 - 6:50 PM

Wilson vs. Randolph

Randolph School

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/randolph-school-huntsville-al/6d86588711

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Chelsea vs. Cullman

Cullman HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/cullman-high-school-cullman-al/8e07af6e73

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Vestavia Hills vs. Shades Valley

Shades Valley HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/shades-valley-high-school-birmingham-al/ea8b5e2835

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Brantley vs. Goshen

Goshen HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/goshen-high-school-goshen-al/27f4da1448

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Northview vs. Charles Henderson

Northview HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/northview-high-school-dothan-al/f5c8184991

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Russellville vs. Colbert County

Russellville HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/russellville-high-school-russellville-al/14c3a8d518

Oct 28 - 7:00 PM

Guntersville vs. Albertville

Albertville HS SBP

http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/albertville-high-school-albertville-al/45e2e8d8c1






Class 2A State Championship

St. Luke’s Episcopal 3, Winston County 0
   
The Wildcats faced three set point serves in the first game at Bill Harris Arena Thursday morning to pull out a 28-26  win, then followed that momentum with dominating 25-11, 25-13 sets to beat Winston County 3-0 to capture the Mobile school’s first ever state volleyball championship.
    The Class 2A finals kicked off Championship Thursday as the 46th annual AHSAA State Volleyball Championships got the first of seven finals underway.
    Elizabeth Thompson, a 6-foot senior middle hitter for St. Luke’s (46-14), spearheaded a strong front line attack  with nine kills and five block assists to earn Class 2A state tournament MVP honors.  Natalie Bonner and Jada Carney added 11 and 10 kills, respectively, for Coach Meredith Donald’s Wildcats. Setter Brooke Threlkeld had 21 assists and Kellan Hensley had 21 digs.
    Winston County (28-16), coached by Tiffany Cole, was led by Andrea Jacques’ nine kills and Saige Blanton’s eight.  Macy Green also recorded 17 assists and Jacques added 17 digs.
    Class 2A All-Tourney Team
   
Elizabeth Thompson, St. Luke’s Episcopal (MVP); Kellan Hensley, St. Luke’s Episcopal; Brooke Threlkeld, St. Luke’s Episcopal; Natalie Bonner, St. Luke’s Episcopal; Saige Blanton, Winston County; Andrea Jacques, Winston County; Ashley Sharff, Altamont.