The final week of the regular season is here. Pasco County teams are making one final push to get ready to contend for a district title or to qualify for a playoff spot with an at-large bid. There is plenty of balance in the county with several teams vying for the top seven spots in the rankings. Check out the list below.
1. Land O’ Lakes (14-4)
Up next: Tuesday at Cypress Creek; Thursday vs. Pasco
The lowdown: The Gators have won seven straight games, including victories over rivals Wesley Chapel (54-48), Mitchell (63-31) and River Ridge (59-48) in the past two weeks to wrap up the Eastern Division title in the Sunshine Athletic Conference. Lily Meir and Jaylin Neder have been consistent scorers and Nathalie Santana has led with her all-around play.
2. Sunlake (12-6)
Up next: Monday vs. Fivay; Thursday vs. Gulf; Friday vs. Carrollwood Day
The lowdown: After losing the first two games of the season and starting out 5-4, the Seahawks have turned things around by winning seven of their last nine games. The two losses in that stretch came against Brooks DeBartolo and Steinbrenner. One of the biggest wins so far this season came against River Ridge in December. Alexandria Gonzalez and Mackenzie Medrano are both averaging double figures in scoring.
3. River Ridge (16-7)
Up next: Tuesday at Tampa Prep; Friday vs. Lakeland Excel Christian Academy
The lowdown: The Royal Knights went 5-0 against their West county foes to win their division in the Sunshine Athletic Conference. The clincher came this past week in a 67-21 win over Hudson. Zaree Nichols finished with 16 points, four rebounds and four steals. Three others – Desiree Collins (12 points, Morgan Nichols (11) and Juliana Ferguson – each reached double figures in scoring. River Ridge’s only two county losses came against Land O’ Lakes and Sunlake, which are both in the East division of the conference.
4. Wiregrass Ranch (12-6)
Up next: Tuesday at Tampa SLAM
The lowdown: After losing to River Ridge two weeks ago, the Bulls bounced back with wins over Anclote (68-55), Wesley Chapel (56-45) and Cypress Creek (62-43). Amaiya Potter had a double-double (18 points, 10 rebounds) against the Sharks. Solei Sowell also was a force inside, averaging double digits in rebounds in the three wins.
5. Wesley Chapel (11-11)
Up next: Tuesday at Calvary Christian; Friday at Cypress Creek
The lowdown: The Wildcats have struggled finding any consistency playing a challenging schedule. They lost to Academy of the Holy Names (58-46) and Wiregrass Ranch (56-45) before rebounding to beat Lakeland Kathleen (54-51). Dayla Christopher has been the leader for the Wildcats, averaging 14.6 points and eight rebounds this season.
6. Anclote (12-8)
Up next: Tuesday at Zephyrhills; Thursday at Hernando; Friday vs. Fivay
The lowdown: Since starting the season 2-5, the Sharks have won 10 of their last 13 games, including victories over Cypress Creek (52-43) and Gulf (47-44) that helped them continue with their momentum. Breanna Ortega, who is averaging 24.2 points per game, has been instrumental in the late season surge.
7. Cypress Creek (9-6)
Up next: Tuesday vs. Land O’ Lakes; Wednesday vs. Hudson; Friday vs. Wesley Chapel
The lowdown: The Coyotes went 1-2 this past week, losing to Anclote 52-43 and Wiregrass Ranch 62-43 and beating Zephyrhills 39-33. That snapped Cypress Creek’s six-game win streak that dated back to mid-December. Mya Ankers, a freshman, is the lone player averaging double figures in scoring at 12.3 points per game.
On the bubble: Mitchell (11-11), Gulf (13-8), Academy at the Lakes (15-3).