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Girls high school basketball rankings: Indiana's North Central leads four new teams in HIGHSCORE Top 25 - HIGHSCORE
Girls high school basketball rankings: Indiana's North Central leads four new teams in MaxPreps Top 25
The No. 1 girls high school basketball team in the country hasn't played for three weeks. The No. 2 team hasn't played at all. The preseason favorite in Alaska hasn't met an in-state opponent this season, but instead is playing a series of games in Mississippi right now. That's right – Mississippi.

Of course it's hardly a news flash that these are strange days, so in a way, all of this is sort of "normal." And so the MaxPreps Top 25 girls high school basketball rankings are about as "normal" as we can make it, absent big tournaments, intersectional matchups and, in many states, regular season or postseason play.

And Lake Highland Prep, the No. 1 team, mentioned above, is back in action Friday, and No. 2 Bishop McNamara will start Saturday. As the saying goes, every journey begins with but a single step.
Sydney Steward, Hazel Green
Photo by Joe Boyd
Sydney Steward, Hazel Green
MaxPreps Top 25 Girls High School Basketball Rankings

Record: 11-0 | Last week: 1
The Highlanders' last game was Jan. 6 against No. 14 Montverde. The next one is Friday against 13-7 Colonial, which wraps up the regular season — but since Florida is planning to have its state playoffs, at least there are more to come.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 2
The Mustangs hope to squeeze in 10 to 15 games before the season ends, and it starts Saturday against Seton. The big one, though, is Feb. 3 against Paul VI.

Record: 12-0 | Last week: 3
The first time around, the Lions outscored their next two opponents 170-45, so the likelihood of an upset is not all that high. In fact, infinitesimal might be stretching it.

Record: 3-0 | Last week: 4
Wayzata still has talent, but the Royals hammered their rival, 102-52. Expect more of the same in the game this week.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 5
The Pioneers begin Jan. 27, but the biggest test looks to be several weeks away: rival Renaissance on Feb. 20.

Record: 16-0 | Last week: 6
The Cougars have one game this week, and barring disaster, will be the heavy favorite the rest of the regular season.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 7
The Cadets likely will play six regular season games (the first of which will be Feb. 6) but the presence of uber-talented Azzi Fudd may still have St. John's in line for the GEICO High School Nationals, should it be played.

Record: 14-0 | Last week: 8
The Red Knights beat Westminster Academy by four the first time around — it was 75-46 in the rematch. The two games this week will not be as challenging.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 9
New Jersey is kicking into first gear, with the Lancers starting next Tuesday — but note that strong Red Bank Catholic is on the schedule Feb. 6.

Record: 21-0 | Last week: 10
The Cougars are having little trouble handling Houston competition and has already beat their next two opponent by a combined score of 158-21. Don't look for much to change.

Record: 7-0 | Last week: 11
The Tigers got past a quality Edmond North team 69-62, but won't have to work nearly as hard in their two games this week.

Record: 10-0 | Last week: 16
The Tigers have three games in the next seven days, and maybe fatigue will have an impact. If not, expect three wins.

Record: 13-0 | Last week: 13
The Redskins, like many members of the MaxPreps Top 25, should have little trouble navigating the upcoming local competition.

Record: 17-1 | Last week: 14
After taking care of 17-2 Plant 59-49 last week, the Eagles host unbeaten Winter Haven on Saturday in what could be the last competitive game of the season.

Record: 15-1 | Last week: 21
The Eagles jump six spots thanks to a second win over previous No. 23 Duncanville. The 69-60 victory was obviously a big one, but Mansfield on Jan. 27 could be another challenge.

Record: 20-2 | Last week: NR
The Panthers' two-point win over previous No. 12 Newark — on the road — vaults Indiana's best back into the MaxPreps Top 25. But there a lot of good teams in Indiana, so North Central will have to work to retain its spot.

Record: 5-2 | Last week: 17
New Hope has played the toughest seven-game schedule in the country, and it gets no easier with the trip to unbeaten Paul VI on Thursday.

Record: 13-0 | Last week: 18
Syracuse was considered the biggest threat to the Silverwolves in Utah, and that turned out to be no problem. The next hurdle? A trip to Davis next Tuesday.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 19
The Argonauts finally take the court next Tuesday against Immaculata — and hopefully it will be the first of many games.

Record: 16-1 | Last week: 12
The Wildcats lost to new No. 16 North Central by two, and they've proved to be Ohio's best — so No. 20 seems about right.

Record: 1-0 | Last week: 21
Arizona is under way, and though the Monsoon starts slowly, the schedule will eventually call for five games in a single week — which is a test no matter how good you are.

Record: 0-0 | Last week: 22
The sharpshooting Vikings will play a 12-game, conference-only schedule, beginning this week — but that conference is the always tough Philadelphia Catholic League, so there will be challenges,

Record: 27-1 | Last week: NR
The Trojans jump into the rankings after a 65-45 hammering of Hoover last week — and the only loss was to No. 16 Ensworth, by three points.

Record: 9-0 | Last week: NR
The Bearcats join the Top 25 party, but draw 5-1 Spencer County on Thursday — and the schedule in competitive Kentucky will ramp up in the coming weeks.

Record: 20-0 | Last week: NR
The Green Wave washes into the MaxPreps Top 25, which is rare territory for Louisiana teams, but must face Anchorage Christian, which was 27-2 last season, on Thursday.

Dropped out: No. 15 Hoover (Ala.); No. 24 Chiawana (Pasco, Wash.), season postponed until spring; No. 23 Duncanville (Texas); No. 25 Meridian (Miss.).

NOTE: Please update schedules and results on MaxPreps. If there are issues, please reach out to [email protected] for assistance.
High school football: Los Gatos senior Adam Garwood carries ball, legacy for his late uncle Pat Tillman - HIGHSCORE
High school football: Los Gatos senior Adam Garwood carries ball, legacy for his late uncle Pat Tillman
Los Gatos (Calif.) senior Adam Garwood doesn't hide it. He just doesn't talk about it much. He doesn't need to.

The chiseled 5-foot-9, 185-pound running back and linebacker proudly wears No. 42 on his black and orange jersey and a small decal of the same number with an American flag that's pasted on his helmet.

It's to honor his uncle, Pat Tillman, the former NFL safety who — in the prime of his career — enlisted in the Army after 9/11 and was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan in 2004. Tillman was only 27.

Garwood was a baby at the time of his uncle's death but has worn Tillman's retired Arizona State number since starting youth football at age 8.

"I just try to represent and carry on his legacy," Garwood said. "He's the role model. He's everything."

By all accounts and every measure, Garwood has represented Tillman impeccably.

The third-year starter leads California's Central Coast Section in rushing (467 yards), yards per carry (13.7) and rushing touchdowns (10) for the section's third-ranked team during an abbreviated spring season due to the pandemic. The Wildcats (3-0) play their biggest game of the season Thursday at fifth-ranked Wilcox (Santa Clara).

His coach Mark Krail calls him the team's heartbeat for an unrelenting work ethic, authentic appreciation of teammates and desire to always be better.
Adam Garwood (42) is the nephew of late Arizona Cardinals safety Pat Tillman.
File photo by Dennis Putian
Adam Garwood (42) is the nephew of late Arizona Cardinals safety Pat Tillman.
"He's for sure the most dedicated player I've ever met," said junior linebacker Jake Ripp, a 6-3, 210-pound FBS prospect who Friday had 19 tackles. "He's a great leader. Very intense. He definitely leads by example."

Last week after practice, Krail was heading home but happened to glance out at the field. There was Garwood doing gassers. By himself. Again.

"He does them all the time," Ripp said. "Some of us will join him but he always outlasts us."

Said Krail: "He's always the last guy off the field. It's just him wanting to be great. He's the heart and soul of the team, but you'll never hear it from him."

Garwood doesn't talk much about his own accomplishments and rarely speaks about Tillman. Even though he plays the same positions, he didn't study Tillman's game film at Leland (San Jose, Calif.), Arizona State or with the Arizona Cardinals.

"Adam doesn't watch much," said his father Alex Garwood. "He's more of a doer."

A star football player himself at Leland and later at Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo, Alex Garwood earned All-American and conference Defensive Player of the Year honors as a linebacker.

He and his wife Christine, a soccer player and competitive dancer, were high school sweethearts at Leland and Christine's sister Marie married Tillman. The four were extremely tight.

When Tillman was killed, Alex quit his day job as a Silicon Valley software salesman and co-founded the Pat Tillman Foundation, which according to its website was "born overnight in the wake of tremendous tragedy, and with determination to honor a man whose passion for life was contagious."

The foundation has raised more than $18 million to "unite and empower remarkable military service members, veterans and spouses as the next generation of public and private sector leaders committed to service beyond self."
Adam Garwood leads the Central Coast Section in rushing yards, touchdowns and yards per carry.
File photo by Dennis Putian
Adam Garwood leads the Central Coast Section in rushing yards, touchdowns and yards per carry.
Alex and Christine never pushed Tillman as a role model for Adam or their two other sons — Ryan, now 20, or Scott, 15. 

"How could they live up to that? How could anyone?" Alex said. "Obviously, we've struggled with Pat's passing. He was just an incredible human being and everything you've ever heard about him, he was better than that. He was the best conversationalist I ever met. Best friend. Simply, an awesome, awesome person."

With dad working daily on the foundation for four years — he's now back to selling software — Tillman's life was prominent among the boys. His traits and actions naturally permeated and penetrated.

Adam Garwood told Ripp about running in one of the foundation's 4.2-mile "Pat's Run," held annually in Tempe (Ariz.).

"He said he ran the entire way with a Navy Seal, and how cool he thought that was," Ripp said. "He told me all about that guy."

Alex Garwood said Tillman's influence was more off the field for his son than on the field. Offerings of hard work, being a good teammate and an example for others. Being well-rounded, interested, resilient, true to yourself and engaged. 

Tillman left behind a blue print to live. Not to mention a Purple Heart. And a Silver Star.

"In that way Pat never stops giving back," Alex Garwood said. "But Pat wasn't perfect and we don't hold him up as a Norse God. We just raised our sons to be the very best versions of who they are. And they have. And we're so grateful for that."

Turns out. Adam shares a lot in common with his uncle on the field as well.

Tillman was considered too small growing up to play football. Instead, he was a two-way terror at Leland, rushing for 34 touchdowns as a senior in addition to leading the team in tackles and to the school's first section title in 1993.

"He wasn't about glory," a former Tillman teammate Rudy Perez told the San Jose Mercury News in 2012. "He was the MVP of the championship game, but he never took the credit."

At 165 pounds, Adam Garwood was well undersized as a junior, but put up a team-best 1,260 yards rushing and 20 touchdowns to go along with 50 tackles and four fumble recoveries. He led the Wildcats to the program's 13th CCS title.

Since then, he's added 20 pounds of muscle, and utilizing a super speed treadmill at home, he's lowered his 40-yard time to 4.47 seconds while upping his top-end treadmill speed to 22 mph. Adam is getting FCS Division I recruiting looks, including Cal Poly, his dad's alma mater.

"Had he played in the fall, I think he'd have many more opportunities," Krail said. "He didn't complain about the time off or bemoan the pandemic. He made the most of the time away. He's considerably bigger and faster. Whoever gets him will be very pleased."

Not only for his talent or speed, Krail said, but also the impassioned, selfless intangibles that mirrors Tillman. Adam led the team in offseason workouts, for instance, and after every touchdown, he truly celebrates with the offensive linemen who paved the way. It's not simply a ritual.
Adam Garwood (42) has celebrated with his offensive linemen 10 times in three games in 2021.
File photo by Scott Dinn
Adam Garwood (42) has celebrated with his offensive linemen 10 times in three games in 2021.
"He'll sprint back to us and really let each of us know we did a great job," Ripp said. "He'll get to us as fast as he got in the end zone. And if you ask him how many touchdowns he's scored and it's always one less than he actually has."

Said Adam: "I definitely don't consider myself the heart and soul of the team. Every single person plays a role, senior or sophomore, two-way player or reserve. Every snap, 11 players have to do their job."

The entire Garwood family embraces that "all-for-one, one-for-all" football culture. Ryan, who graduated from Los Gatos in 2019, introduced it to Adam. And now, Adam displays it to Scott, who stars on the freshman team. The brothers are extremely close.

"Right, wrong or indifferent, we're a football family," Alex Garwood said.

Adam Garwood definitely shares that unbridled passion of football with his uncle. He's played with "intensity and fire" since he was 8, said Alex Garwood. It's the only area his dad would compare him to Tillman.

"Pat played like every play was his last," said Alex Garwood, who graduated from Leland in 1990, four years before Tillman. "He flew around and figured out a way to make a tackle or play. Adam does that, too."

And he does it with a joy that brings tears to his father's eyes. Before the team's first game this season, Adam led the team in warm-ups, then guided them to the sidelines, where he flailed his fists and roared to the skies, unleashing 15 months of pent up fury from no competition. 

Or perhaps he channeled his uncle's favorite quote: "To err on the side of passion is human and right and the only way I'll live."

Or perhaps he just expressed the glee of playing the game he loves with his best friends.

"Football means everything to me," Adam Garwood said. "The relationship you build with teammates is hard to describe. It's a feeling that only we share, under the lights. It's beautiful."
Adam Garwood looking up at a gigantic Pat Tillman jersey before an annual 4.2-mile run in Tempe (Ariz.) put on by the Pat Tillman Foundation. "Pat's Run" is the signature fundraiser for the foundation's scholarship program, this year scheduled April 24 to be run virtually.
Courtesy of Garwood family
Adam Garwood looking up at a gigantic Pat Tillman jersey before an annual 4.2-mile run in Tempe (Ariz.) put on by the Pat Tillman Foundation. "Pat's Run" is the signature fundraiser for the foundation's scholarship program, this year scheduled April 24 to be run virtually.

Over 29,000 fans attended high school baseball state tournament in Iowa last week - HIGHSCORE
Over 29,000 fans attended high school baseball state tournament in Iowa last week
While Major League Baseball is suffering through cancellations and postponements in trying to get its season off the ground amid the pandemic, the Iowa high school baseball tournament went off without a hitch last week. Over 29,000 fans attended the event at Principal Park in Des Moines – home of the Triple-A Iowa Cubs.

The event was played throughout last week with state championships in all four classes held Saturday. According to a Twitter account devoted to the Iowa high school baseball tournament, 29,904 fans passed through the turnstiles – the highest turnout since 2014.
Due to virus concerns, ticket sales for each game were capped around 1,800, according to a press release distributed by the IHSAA. Capacity at Principal Park is 11,500.

While reports from last week's championships have been positive, the state's summer baseball and softball seasons haven't been without adversity when it comes to the novel coronavirus. ESPN reported in early July that at least 25 of 338 baseball teams and 20 softball teams have encountered some type of exposure to COVID-19.

Class 4A baseball championship contender Dowling Catholic (West Des Moines) ended its season around the same time after a member of the team tested positive for COVID-19. The school's softball team also ended its season prematurely.

The season got underway a month later than originally scheduled. Those initial baseball and softball contests in Iowa were the first high school sports events since the pandemic shut things down in March.
North Carolina high school football: Schedule, scores for NCHSAA state championship games - HIGHSCORE
North Carolina high school football: Schedule, scores for NCHSAA state championship games
The North Carolina High School Athletic Association will host eight football state championship games featuring 10 undefeated teams beginning Thursday at the University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University.

Four title games — 1A, 2AA, 3A, 4AA — will be hosted at North Carolina State's Finley Stadium starting Thursday with the 2AA contest between Salisbury (8-2) and St. Pauls (8-0). It concludes Saturday with the 4AA tilt between Rolesville (9-0) and the state's No. 1 ranked team, Zebulon B. Vance (9-1).

The other four championship games — 1AA, 2A, 3AA, 4A — will be played at North Carolina's Kenan Stadium, starting Thursday with the 3AA contest between a pair of 10-0 squads, Mount Tabor and Cleveland. Two Saturday games finish off the championships, concluding with the 2A game between Mountain Heritage (7-1) and Reidsville (9-0).

In all, the 16 teams have combined for records of 140 wins and just eight defeats. All eight games with be broadcast on the NFHS Network.

The NCHSAA was one of 15 states to bypass traditional fall football due to the pandemic. Of the 11 states that played football in the spring, only three opted for playoffs and to crown state champions. Virginia did so last week and North Carolina and Rhode Island wrap up football championships for the 2020-21 season this week.

Among the many standouts in the championship games is Havelock senior running back Kamarro Edmonds, a 5-foot-11, 227 pound senior who has rushed for 916 yards and 15 touchdowns in eight games. He's ranked the No. 16 senior in the state by 247Sports and headed to North Carolina.

Also a basketball star who averaged over 30 points per game this year, Reidsville senior wide receiver Breon Pass is ranked the state No. 28 senior recruit overall after catching 83 passes for more than 1,400 yards and 27 touchdowns in his career heading into this season.
Havelock senior running back Kamarro Edmonds has signed to the University of North Carolina.
File photo by Carin-Goodall Gosnell
Havelock senior running back Kamarro Edmonds has signed to the University of North Carolina.
NCHSAA Football Championships

Full bracket can be found here - 2020-2021 Football Championships 1A
Donovan Clingan named 2020-21 HIGHSCORE Connecticut High School Basketball Player of the Year - HIGHSCORE
Donovan Clingan named 2020-21 MaxPreps Connecticut High School Basketball Player of the Year
Each year since 2006, MaxPreps has recognized outstanding performers in high school basketball. America's source for high school sports continues the tradition to close out the 2020-21 season by naming the top player in each state. Selections are based on team success and individual excellence, in addition to local and state accolades.

Donovan Clingan of Bristol Central (Bristol) is the 2020-21 MaxPreps Connecticut High School Basketball Player of the Year. The 7-foot-1, 255-pound junior helped the Rams go 15-0 en route to the program's first Central Connecticut Conference championship since 2003.

Clingan averaged 27.3 points, 17.2 rebounds, 5.8 blocks and 3.1 assists per contest this season. He averaged 36 points and 26.3 rebounds in three CCC tournament games.

In Bristol Central's 69-68 overtime victory against East Catholic in the CCC title game, Clingan finished with 33 points, 26 rebounds, seven blocks and five assists. He capped that performance by knocking down the game-winning shot with four seconds remaining.

Regarded as the No. 45 prospect in the Class of 2022 by 247Sports, Clingan holds 18 college offers including Connecticut, Georgetown, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Syracuse among others.

Each state's MaxPreps Player of the Year will be considered for inclusion in the MaxPreps All-America Team, which is scheduled to be released April 13.