After starting slow out of the gates, River Ridge has quickly turned things around.
The Knights earned their fifth consecutive win Tuesday night with a 71-68 victory at Sequoyah.
Led by sophomore Jared Russo’s 27 points, the Knights (5-5, 3-2) moved into the top four of Region 6AAAAAA.
“It was a huge win for our guys,” River Ridge coach Aaron Darling said. “These seniors had never beaten Sequoyah before. Sequoyah is a really good team, so that’s definitely a confidence-builder for us moving forward.”
Senior point guard Will Apple added 17 points for River Ridge, and Darling credited Harry Bentley’s defense as being critical to lifting the Knights to victory.
Jacksen Greco led Sequoyah (5-4, 1-2) with 22 points, while Donovan Shipp added nine points and nine assists.
Last season, River Ridge lost its first 12 games before getting into the win column and totaled only three wins all season. Darling started one senior, three sophomores and a freshman Tuesday night and said he is excited about where his young team is headed.
“Getting that first win under our belt really helped and then, after we won that third game, there was even more pressure taken off,” Darling said. “Nobody expected us to win against Sequoyah, and I think seeing some success has given our guys confidence.”
River Ridge will play next at 8:30 p.m. Friday at Creekview, while Sequoyah will play next at 7:30 p.m. Friday at home against Dalton.
Etowah 52, Walton 49: Colby Flaig scored a team-high 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds to help lead Etowah to a home win Tuesday in the teams' Region 4AAAAAAA opener.
Will Garvey scored nine points while adding six rebounds, five assists and five steals. Mason Etter added 13 points.
Etowah (7-1, 1-0) will play next at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Lassiter.
Cherokee 69, Lassiter 33: Cherokee won its Region 4AAAAAAA opener in impressive fashion Tuesday night with a convincing home win.
The Warriors (7-1, 1-0) jumped out to a 20-2 lead by the end of the first quarter and cruised to their third straight win.
Elijah Tucker scored 23 points on 9-for-12 shooting while adding 10 rebounds to lead Cherokee. Taihland Owens and Zack Vickers each added 11 points.
Cherokee will play next at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Woodstock.
South Cobb 69, Creekview 40: Creekview fell to 2-8 overall 0-4 in Region 6AAAAAA with a home loss Tuesday night.
Spencer McDonald led Creekview with 14 points, while Ethan Dirrim added eight points.
Creekview will play next at 8:30 p.m. Friday at home against River Ridge.
Roswell 56, Woodstock 50: Woodstock dropped its Region 4AAAAAAA opener with a road loss Tuesday night.
Ezekiel Pettway scored a team-high 27 points for Woodstock (5-5, 0-1), while D.J. Potts-Heard added nine points.
Woodstock will play next at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Cherokee.
Cherokee 71, Lassiter 12: Kate Johnson scored 15 points to help lead Cherokee to an impressive victory in its Region 4AAAAAAA opener at home Tuesday night.
Haylee Donley and Caroline Karl each added eight points apiece for Cherokee (9-1, 1-0).
The win set up an early-season region showdown when Cherokee travels to Woodstock to take on the undefeated Lady Wolverines at 6 p.m. Friday.
Woodstock 65, Roswell 58: Carly Henderson scored a team-high 27, while Bridget Utberg added 23 points as Woodstock remained the only undefeated team in Cherokee County with a road win Tuesday night.
The region-opening win set up a top-of-the-region showdown at 6 p.m. Friday when Woodstock (10-0, 1-0) hosts Cherokee.
Creekview 58, South Cobb 50
Julia Craft scored 16 points and Emily Wilkie added 12 points as Creekview improved its record to 5-3, 3-1 with a Region 6AAAAAA win at home on Tuesday night.
Creekview will play next at 6 p.m. Friday at home against River Ridge.
Sequoyah 61, River Ridge 49: Sequoyah snapped its two-game losing streak and got itself into the win column in Region 6AAAAAA with a home win Tuesday night.
Macy Williams scoreda career-high 23 points, while A’ryn Jackson had 15 points, five rebounds and three assists the Lady Chiefs (3-5, 1-2). Kayli Hamby added 10 points, and Susanna Rogers had six.
Sequoyah will play next at 7 p.m. Friday at home against Dalton.
Walton 51, Etowah 43: Etowah dropped to 5-4 overall and 0-1 in Region 4AAAAAAA with its road loss Tuesday night.
Ally Zazzara made seven 3-pointers and finished with 23 points to lead Etowah, while Jada Peterson finished with nine points.
Etowah will play next at 6 p.m. Friday at Lassiter.