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By Michael Hebert | Photo by Jamie Spaar

Any game between rivals Brookwood and Grayson is big, but late in the season with the playoffs looming, it's even bigger.

Their matchup Friday is the game of the week, but close behind is a non-region tilt between Lovejoy and Norcross on Saturday.


10.Carrollton (16-2) vs. Douglas County (12-11), 6 p.m.Tuesday

Carrollton found out that it is not unbeatable, as the Trojans lost to Archer 61-48 on Jan. 22. The Trojans were able to pick up back-to-back wins, but the month of January saw stiffer competition and two more losses for Carrollton. The Trojans are likely on the outside looking in regarding top seeding for the region tournament but can close out the year with back-to-back wins.

9.Buford (18-3) vs. Central Gwinnett (13-9), 6 p.m. Friday

Buford has won 10 in a row and is playing some of its best basketball. Usually good things happen when the Wolves score over 50 points. The only time they didn't, it was a 49-37 loss on Dec. 20 to No. 1 Brookwood. Buford can finish the season strong with two more region games left after Friday’s tilt. 

8. Fayette County (13-8) vs. Luella (18-3), 6 p.m. Tuesday

A tough 61-41 loss to Holy Innocents' on Jan. 17 was the only negative blip on Luella’s resume in the last few weeks, but the Lions got back-to-back wins over North Clayton and McDonough. The Lions can keep that momentum going with two more region games this week and can close the season on a five-game winning streak.

7.Midtown (12-6) vs. Maynard Jackson (11-2), noon Friday 

Midtown has had an up-and-down season, but the Knights have two important games this week with Lithia Springs and Maynard Jackson on deck, two of Midtown’s toughest opponents. Maynard Jackson, on the other hand, hasn’t played a ton this season, but the Jaguars are really good when they do. 

6.Galloway (13-5) vs. Hebron Christian (17-4), 5:30 p.m. Tuesday 

Hebron Christian lost back-to-back games to Wesleyan and Holy Innocents' last week but picked up a 55-33 win over Rabun Gap on Saturday. Two more games with Galloway and Atlanta International are all that’s left in the regular season for the Lions. Yet, Galloway has won three in a row and is capable of the upset. 

5.St. Francis (14-2) vs. McEachern (12-8), 6 p.m. Friday

The win streak is now at nine for the St. Francis Knights, as they try to keep pace with Holy Innocents' and stake their claim as one of the best teams in Class A. While St. Francis plays mostly region games this week, the Knights will hit the road for a big non-region game against McEachern. The Indians have plenty of talent every year and are more than capable of pushing St. Francis. 

4. Holy Innocents' (19-2) vs. Wesleyan (11-5), 6:30 p.m. Friday

Holy Innocents' had a few challenges last month with some tougher competition and proceeded to keep rolling, much like the Bears have done all season. Holy Innocents beat Kell 54-43 on Jan. 8, the Bears trounced Luella 61-41 Jan. 17 and finished off the strong month by topping Greater Atlanta Christian 68-49 and Hebron Christian, 75-58. Holy Innocents' closes out the season with three region games, starting with Friday’s game against Wesleyan.

3.Alpharetta (14-7) vs. Cherokee (18-5), 6 p.m. Friday

Cherokee has won nine games in a row this season and capped off an undefeated January highlighted by a 57-53 win over Woodstock. Alpharetta was staring down a potential three-game skid, but the Raiders bounced back with a 65-36 win over Creekside. While this is a big game for Alpharetta, the Raiders will need to do something different, as Cherokee won 68-45 on Jan. 14. 

2.Lovejoy (16-3) vs. Norcross (16-3), 2:30 p.m. Saturday 

Another big, ranked, non-region matchup taking place this week, this one in Gwinnett County. Norcross has won two in a row and sits atop Region 7, while Lovejoy has won seven games in a row and is in first place in Region 4. Both of these teams always have a wealth of talent.

1.Brookwood (16-3) vs. Grayson (16-3), 6 p.m. Friday 

The marquee game of the week and probably one of the biggest games for both teams this season, Brookwood and Grayson, big rivals, have probably had this game circled on the calendars for a while. Grayson is on a six-game winning streak and can make it seven with a game against New Faith Academy at 6 p.m. Monday. Brookwood has won 10 in a row and can make it 11 with a game against South Gwinnett at 6 p.m. Tuesday.