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High school basketball: Social media post suggests Bronny James has been cleared to play...but will he? - HIGHSCORE
High school basketball: Social media post suggests Bronny James has been cleared to play...but will he?
Like father, like son. Bronny James, the national Top 25 sophomore boys basketball recruit and son of LeBron James, is recovered from injury and ready to go just before the playoffs, according to a report.

A Tik Tok post by WhosNextHS indicated the 6-foot-2, 165-pound shooting guard from Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, Calif.) has been "cleared to start hoopin' " after suffering a torn meniscus in early February.

Sierra Canyon, which had won two straight California Interscholastic Federation Open Division championships before the pandemic ended its 2019-20 season one game short of a possible third consecutive crown, will open the Southern Section playoffs next week.

A text Friday morning to Sierra Canyon coach Andre Chevalier to confirm James' health status or his plans to play for the Trailblazers was not immediately returned.

Sierra Canyon (10-0) is expected to be a top seed in the Open Division, which begins May 28. If it advances, Sierra Canyon would play in the Southern Regional, which takes place June 15-19. For a second straight year, there will be no CIF state basketball championships.

Ranked the No. 25 prospect in the Class of 2023 according to 247Sports, James came off the bench for Sierra Canyon's Southern California championship team last season. He figured to be a starter on the 2020-21 squad, which like the rest of the state had its season delayed until the spring only.
Bronny James has missed Sierra Canyon's shortened 2020-21 spring season due to a knee injury.
File photo by Scott Reed
Bronny James has missed Sierra Canyon's shortened 2020-21 spring season due to a knee injury.
According to the Los Angeles Daily News, James was competing for a Sierra Canyon club team, California Basketball Club, when the injury occurred.

LeBron James returned to the Los Angeles Lakers Wednesday in a 103-100 win over the Golden State Warriors and delivered a triple-double along with making the game-winning 3-pointer. He had missed 25 of the team's final 30 games due to an ankle injury before Wednesday and is waiting for the Lakers' series opener Sunday with the Phoenix Suns.

Sierra Canyon has maintained an unbeaten record despite numerous other setbacks besides Bronny's. At the top of the list is four-star guard Chance Westry, a Pennsylvania native who returned home earlier this month due to personal reasons. The No. 34 overall prospect from the Class of 2022, Westry averaged 14.2 points per outing in five appearances this season.

Max Allen, a 6-foot-8 post player, left the team before the regular season officially got underway April 22 and 7-foot-3 center Harold Yu, who lives in China, also did not join the team.

MaxPreps national basketball editor Jordan Divens contributed to this report.
High school basketball: DeMatha job open for just the second time in 65 years as Mike Jones departs for college job - HIGHSCORE
High school basketball: DeMatha job open for just the second time in 65 years as Mike Jones departs for college job
The Virginia Tech basketball program announced Monday that longtime DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) head coach Mike Jones has accepted the associate head coach position with the program.

Jones coached DeMatha for the past 19 years and owns a record of 511-119 (.811 winning percentage) with eight Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championships. DeMatha finished 2020-21 ranked No. 4 in the MaxPreps Top 25 with a 9-0 record in an abbreviated campaign.

The 1991 DeMatha graduate took over the helm following the departure of legendary head coach Morgan Wootten, who led the Stags to a record of 1,274-192 from 1956-2002.
The school said via social media the search for Jones' replacement would begin in the coming weeks "but for now we celebrate with coach Jones this opportunity."

The next DeMatha coach will have massive shoes to fill after Wootten and Jones led the national powerhouse to 41 Washington Catholic Athletic Conference titles and won nearly 85 percent of their games over the past 65 seasons.
Mike Jones coached six players at DeMatha who went on to the NBA.
Photo by Patrick Kane
Mike Jones coached six players at DeMatha who went on to the NBA.

High school basketball: With COVID-19 guidelines limiting indoor activity, games in Washington's Pierce County being played in livestock arena - HIGHSCORE
High school basketball: With COVID-19 guidelines limiting indoor activity, games in Washington's Pierce County being played in livestock arena
With local guidelines restricting indoor activity amid the pandemic, athletic directors, coaches and local businesses got creative to save the high school basketball season in Washington's Pierce County.

Games finally got underway Wednesday on the grounds of the Washington State Fair in Puyallup in a venue typically reserved for equestrian activities, livestock shows, auctions and swap meets.

The arena has a roof but opens on both ends, allowing the basketball games to be played and skirting the limit on indoor gatherings. Puyallup-based Looker Asphalt paved the arena floor in recent days in order to make it possible to lay down courts.
Curtis (University Place) athletic director Suzanne Vick told KJR 950 on Wednesday that nearly 400 games are scheduled to be played on three courts featuring boys and girls teams from the South Puget Sound League and Pierce County League.

Spectators aren't permitted this week but Vick said she hopes two guests per uniformed player will be allowed in the near future.

Thankfully, the area's unpredictable spring weather is doing its part to cooperate. Temperatures are expected to remain in the 70s through the weekend.
Two junior varsity girls games were the first to be played on the newly installed courts Wednesday afternoon.
Photo by Vince Miller
Two junior varsity girls games were the first to be played on the newly installed courts Wednesday afternoon.
Photo by Vince Miller
A Rogers player takes a shot during one of the two junior varsity girls games.
Photo by Vince MIller
A Rogers player takes a shot during one of the two junior varsity girls games.
Photo by Vince Miller
Dane Looker (right) of Looker Asphalt and Greg Barrett work to finish installing the courts in time for the first games that were held Wednesday afternoon.
Photo by Vince Miller
Dane Looker (right) of Looker Asphalt and Greg Barrett work to finish installing the courts in time for the first games that were held Wednesday afternoon.
Photo by Vince MIller


High school football: Hall of Famer Alan Faneca named head coach for Virginia program - HIGHSCORE
High school football: Hall of Famer Alan Faneca named head coach for Virginia program
Not many high school football players can say their coach is a Hall of Famer. Players at Cox (Virginia Beach, Va.) now can after former Pittsburgh Steelers great Alan Faneca was named head coach Monday.

The 13-year NFL veteran is part of the 2021 Pro Football Hall of Fame class and will be inducted Aug. 8 along with Peyton Manning, Charles Woodson, Tom Flores, Calvin Johnson, Bill Nunn, John Lynch and Drew Pearson.

After the induction ceremony, however, it's back to preparing the Falcons for the 2021 season. Cox went 5-1 in the recently completed spring season in Virginia.

Faneca helped the Steelers to a Super Bowl XL win over Seattle in 2006. He served as the offensive line coach at Cox for the past two seasons under Bill Stachelski, the school's winningest coach who is stepping aside to coach golf.

Stachelski compiled an 88-47 record and guided the Falcons to their first playoff victory in 2015.

"I’m not selling any fantasies," Faneca told the Virginian-Pilot in February. "I’m going out there and coaching football and getting the kids developed as football players and people. That’s how I was taught when I was in school."

Cox is 35-17 over the past five seasons.

Faneca was an All-American out of LSU before being drafted in 1998 in the first round by the Steelers. He played 13 seasons in the NFL with Pittsburgh, the New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals before retiring in 2011. He was named to the NFL's All-Decade Team of the 2000s.

Faneca's wife, Julie Kuchtka, is from Virginia Beach and their daughter attends Cox.
Virginia crowns first spring football champions in high school history - HIGHSCORE
Virginia crowns first spring football champions in high school history
Like any other year, the Virginia High School League crowned six state football champions Saturday afternoon in six different classifications. But these were clearly different.  From all records MaxPreps has researched, Virginia is the first state to ever award football championships in the spring.

The Riverhead Gladiators were officially the first ones crowned, with a 65-29 victory over the Galaxy Maroon Tide in the Class 1 title game. A 34-point second-point explosion led the Gladiators to their 10th straight win of the season. They outscored opponents 483-119 on the season. 

Perennial East power Oscar Smith (8-0) followed with a 62-21 Class 6 title win over South County, and Stone Bridge (8-0) took the Class 5 crown with a 13-10 overtime win over Highland Springs. (See all the champions below).

The VHSL was one of 15 states to move the traditional fall 2020 season to the spring due to COVID-19 pandemic. Of those states, 11 decided on abbreviated spring seasons, with just three opting for playoffs. North Carolina and Rhode Island have scheduled state championship games next week.

According to MaxPreps senior writer and historian Kevin Askeland, no states have ever held football championships in the spring, although one in California was scheduled in 1919. That title game was called off when Orange League champion Fullerton disbanded a month before the scheduled contest.
Oscar Smith turned around a loss in the 2019 VHSL Class 6 title game with a resounding 65-21 win over the Stallions on Saturday.
File photo by Fred Ingham
Oscar Smith turned around a loss in the 2019 VHSL Class 6 title game with a resounding 65-21 win over the Stallions on Saturday.
2021 Spring VHSL State Football Championships

Class 1Full bracket can be found here - 2020 Virginia High School Football Playoff Brackets: VHSL Class 1