With school going back in session after the holidays, that means local high-school girls basketball teams will jump back into the heart of their district games this month, making it a good time to get a gauge on where some of the East Polk teams stand.
Haines City is out of the gate 13-2, and starts districts with a visit from Osceola tonight. Their return rivalry game with Ridge Community is Jan. 17. The Bolts took the first meeting back in mid-December by a point, 56-55. Standout Fujika Nimmo had 30 points that night and is averaging over 26 points per game, with a season-best 31 in December in a win over Lake Gibson.
By the way, she'll attend Florida International to continue her basketball and academic careers. Nimmo earned 9A Player of the Year and District Player of the Year distinctions last season, averaging 27.4 points per contest which ranked 34th nationally and third in the state.
Speaking of Ridge Community, the Bolts hit a bit of rough patch dropping all three recent games at the River Ridge New Years Tournament, with the last two losses coming by two and six points. Despite that, their first-half ledger stands at 10-4.
Winter Haven snapped an unusual four-game losing streak against Heritage last week, picking up a 58-44 win. Heading into the holiday events, Trinity Hardy led the team in scoring averaging 15.4 points a night, while Zakiyah Franklin was averaging over 14 points a game and also leading the team in rebounds.
The Blue Devils will be at Bartow next Monday. The Yellow Jackets finished the holiday season with a 72-68 over Orlando First Academy. The game was tied going into the final eight minutes.
Lake Wales will host Sebring Thursday, getting back into league play. The Lady Highlanders are 7-3. Chanelle McDonald tossed in 18 points in a lopsided win in Sebring back in December. She's averaging 15.6 a night to lead Lake Wales. Ahsiyah Williams and Passion Hodge are also averaging in double-digits through the first 10 games as well.
Lake Region and Auburndale will hook up Jan. 15 on the Bloodhounds hardwood. Auburndale went into the break five up and five down. The Thunder will be looking for their first win. Donnia Skipper has been averaging double-digits per game despite the early mark.
1st time for everything
Ridge Community recorded a little girls soccer history recently when it scored its first-ever win against George Jenkins.
The final was 5-2 in a game called at the half due to bad weather. Brianna Brudy, a freshman, scored three goals – and has 32 on the year – in the win. The Bolts are 12-2-1 on the season and in the midst of six consecutive road games.