STATE CHAMPS: Sacred Heart Boys & Spring Garden Girls Capture 1A Crowns

The Spring Garden Lady Panthers won their fifth state championship in school history with a 64-38 victory over Linden in the Class 1A girls state final. The Panthers defense held the Lady Patriots to just 29% shooting on their way to their first championship since 2008.

On the boys side, the Sacred Heart Cardinals continued their recent dominance in Class 1A with a resounding 95-75 win over Georgiana. The Cardinals claim back to back state championships and wrap up the season 29-8. Full highlights and reaction from both games are in the featured video.

Official game wraps:

CLASS 1A GIRLS CHAMPIONSHIP Spring Garden 64, Linden 38 Spring Garden High School beat Linden 64-38 Thursday afternoon to claim the Class 1A girls’ state championship at the BJCC Legacy Arena. The championship was the first of 14 to be played in the 94th annual AHSAA State Finals. Coach Ricky Austin’s Panthers (31-4) dominated from start to finish to claim the school’s fifth girls’ state basketball title overall. It was the fourth in Austin’s tenure. Class 1A state tournament MVP Tykeah Rogers scored 25 points and cleared 14 rebounds to lead Spring Garden. She also had three blocked shots and two steals. Savannah Dempsey, who also made the all-tourney team, had 16 points and 13 rebounds, and Madison Sides, the third member of the all-tourney team from the Panthers, added nine points. Dempsey also had four 3-pointers. Linden (18-7), coached by Teressa Bolden, were led by all-tourney selection Amber Richardson’s 15 points and nine rebounds. She also had a game-high six steals. Spring Garden’s other state titles came in 1987, 2004, 2007 and 2008. Austin’s team finished as runner-up last season. Class 1A State Finals All-Tourney Team Tykeah Rogers, Spring Garden (MVP); Savannah Dempsey, Spring Garden; Madison Sides, Spring Garden; Amber Richardson, Linden; Harriett Winchester, Keith; Kaitlyn Cheatham, Decatur Heritage.

CLASS 1A BOYS CHAMPIONSHIP Sacred Heart Catholic 95, Geogiana 75 Sacred Heart Catholic got 59 points combined from junior D.J. Heath and sophomore Diante Wood as the Cardinals downed Georgiana 95-75 to claim the Anniston school’s second straight Class 1A state boys’ basketball championship. Wood had 30 points and Heath 29 for the Cardinals (29-8) as the Class 1A title game closed Thursday’s action at the 94th AHSAA State Basketball Finals. Heath was 15-of-22 at the free-throw line and Wood 8-of-9 as Sacred Heart finished 25-of-33 at the charity stripe. Championship action continues Friday at the BJCC Legacy Arena with championship games for girls and boys in Class 2A, 3A and 4A. Saturday’schampionship slate (5A, 6A and 7A) closes out the 2016 championships. Both championship days begin at 9 a.m. Wood, who also had 13 rebounds and five blocked shots, earned MVP honors for Coach Ralpheal Graves’ Cardinals. Heath and Nolan joined him on the Class 1A State Finals All-Tourney team. Georgiana (30-2), coached by Kirk Norris, was led by Richard Boggan’s 25 points, 15 rebounds and four steals. Ja’Michael Stallworth added 18 points and three 3-pointers, and Jaquez Patton had 16 points. The Panthers’ 30-win season was the most in school history. Class 1A State Finals All-Tourney Team Diante Wood, Sacred Heart (MVP); Kevion Nolan, Sacred Heart; D.J. Heath, Sacred Heart; Jacquez Patton, Georgiana; Richard Boggan, Georgiana; John Pettway, Keith.

Courtesy: AHSAA (


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