Basketball in the Thomaston-Upson School System is becoming an elite sport. Last season, the ULMS Knights won their second straight CGMSAL (Central Georgia Middle School Athletic League) Championship, while the Upson Lee Knights advanced to the Elite 8 for the first time in school history.
One of the biggest reason’s for the Knights, success has come from a team rooted in Crawford County. The Crawford County Supersonics are a traveling basketball organization, with teams from many different age groups, that play in the YBOA (Youth Basketball of America) basketball league. A league which competes in Summer League games and tournament throughout the country.
On the Crawford County Seupersonics 15 & under team, seven players and the head coach are residents of Upson County. This is the same team which captured the 14 & YBOA National Championship in 2014. Last week, they traveled to Orlando to compete in the National Championships, winning three pool games and four tournament games on their way to a 7-0 record and another National Championship.
“These guys are getting better every year,” said Supersonics Head Coach Maurice Scott. “We get the chance to teach them the fundamentals of basketball and life lessons that will help them off the court. They have been playing together for a long time and their team chemistry is one of the biggest reasons for their success. I feel it’s also a reason why we are starting to see some results in the Upson Lee basketball teams at the middle school and high school levels.”
Coach Scott hit the nail on the head when it comes to the success of the Knights basketball program. Everyone of the players from Upson County on the Supersonics team play in the Upson Lee basketball program. Older players such as O’qualon Harris, David Marshall, and Mikey Smith were also part of the Supersonics and still play with the organization’s older teams. Middle Georgia Player of the Year William Jarrell is also a member of the Supersonics organization. Last year he led the Crawford County Eagles to the AA State Championship Game.
While in Orlando for the tournament, the Supersonics outscored their opponents by an average of 28 points. There were a total of 20 teams in the tournament from nine different states, including Florida, Georgia, Texas, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Massachusetts.
In pool play the Supersonics defeated the Orlando Warriors 59-31, Club 51 (Tenn.) 68-41, and the Mobile Hurricanes 64-32. They then headed into tournament play as the No. 1 seed. In the first round they defeated the Texas Mavericks 62-34 and the Port City Rain (Ala.) by a 69-40 score in the second round. In the semi-finals they took care of business against the South Florida Elite by a 75-46 score, and had zero problems in the Championship Game with Team Finesse (Ala.), winning the Championship Game by a 68-47 score.
On the 12-man team, seven players are from Upson County, two players from Bibb County, and one player each from Taylor, Crawford, and Marion Counties. The seven players from Upson County are Tavias Fagan, Cameron Traylor, Caleb Raines, Zyrice Scott, Travon Walker, Basil Clemons, and Charkevious Walker.
Wes McCard can be contacted at 706-647-5414 or on Twitter @WesMc21.