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Wednesday August 10th, 2022 6:54PM

Lanierland: A quick look at the past, future

GAINESVILLE — Fifty-seven years ago South Hall High School principal C.W. Davis inaugurated a basketball tournament for Hall County-based schools.

“We wanted to have a tournament for our four schools — East Hall, Gainesville, North Hall, and South Hall — that did not require long travel for participation," Davis said in a 2008 interview. "We wanted to be able to share expenses and knew we could rotate the tournament from school to school here in Hall County.”

From those humble beginnings sprouted the Lanierland tournament -- now the oldest invitational tournament in the state.

(NOTE: To view the 2016 Lanierland boys and girls brackets, simply click on the photo above and then click on the arrow on the expanded photo to scroll through the brackets.)

The boys side of the competition has been largely dominated by two programs, as East Hall owns 24 Lanierland crowns and Gainesville 18 -- the four other winners combined share 14 Lanierlad titles. North Hall is third with seven, Johnson/South Hall has five and West Hall and Flowery Branch one apiece.

The girls bracket has been much more evenly contested. And while the East Hall girls lead the way with 17 Lanierlands to their name, North Hall is second with 13 and Gainesville third with 11. Five more programs have won the tournament, including seven for Johnson, four for West Hall, two for Flowery Branch and one apiece for Chestatee and even Forsyth County (now Forsyth Central, which won during a period in which teams outside of Hall County were also invited).

This year's tournament, the 57th installment, will include eight teams, all from Hall County -- Chestatee, East Hall, Flowery Branch, Gainesville, Johnson, Lakeview Academy and West Hall -- and will take place Dec. 28-30 at North Hall and Gainesville High schools. (Click here for a preview of the 2016 tournament).

First round action begins Wednesday at North Hall High School. The semifinals and finals will follow on Thursday and Friday, moving to Gainesville High.

Action on Thursday and Friday will begin with consolation round contests. 

In 2015, the Flowery Branch boys beat East Hall 62-56 for its first-ever boys title. North Hall beat West Hall for third. Lakeview Academy was fifth, Johnson sixth, and Chestatee finished seventh. The Gainesville boys did not participate in the 2015 tournament due to a two-game suspension imposed by the school and the GHSA because of an altercation in a Kentucky tournament the week before.

The Flowery Branch girls won the 2015 tournament with a 72-49 win over East Hall. The Gainesville girls finished third with North Hall fourth. Lakeview Academy was fifth, Chestatee sixth, West Hall seventh, and Johnson eighth.

ALL-TIME LANIERLAND CHAMPIONS
BOYS 
Team, number of titles
East Hall - 24
Gainesville - 18
North Hall - 7
Johnson/South Hall* - 5
Flowery Branch - 1
West Hall - 1

Year, team
1960 -- Gainesville
1961 -- Gainesville
1962 -- East Hall
1963 -- North Hall
1964 -- South Hall
1965 -- North Hall
1966 -- North Hall
1967 -- South Hall
1968 -- East Hall
1969 -- East Hall
1970 -- East Hall
1971 -- Gainesville
1972 -- East Hall
1973 -- East Hall
1974 -- North Hall
1975 -- Gainesville
1976 -- Gainesville
1977 -- Gainesville
1978 -- Gainesville
1979 -- Gainesville
1980 -- East Hall
1981 -- East Hall
1982 -- Gainesville
1983 -- Gainesville
1984 -- Gainesville
1985 -- Gainesville
1986 -- East Hall
1987 -- Gainesville
1988 -- Johnson
1989 -- Gainesville
1990 -- East Hall
1991 -- Gainesville
1992 -- Gainesville
1993 -- North Hall
1994 -- East Hall
1995 -- East Hall
1996 -- East Hall
1997 -- East Hall
1998 -- East Hall
1999 -- East Hall
2000 -- East Hall
2001 -- Gainesville
2002 -- East Hall
2003 -- East Hall
2004 -- East Hall
2005 -- East Hall
2006 -- East Hall
2007 -- East Hall
2008 -- West Hall
2009 -- North Hall
2010 -- East Hall
2011 -- Gainesville
2012 -- North Hall
2013 -- Johnson
2014 -- Johnson
2015 -- Flowery Branch

GIRLS
Team, number of titles
East Hall - 17
North Hall - 13
Gainesville - 11
Johnson/South Hall* - 7
West Hall - 4
Flowery Branch - 2
Chestatee - 1
Forsyth County - 1

Year, team
1960 -- East Hall
1961 -- East Hall
1962 -- Gainesville
1963 -- East Hall
1964 -- North Hall
1965 -- Forsyth Co.
1966 -- South Hall
1967 -- South Hall
1968 -- East Hall
1969 -- North Hall
1970 -- East Hall
1971 -- North Hall
1972 -- Johnson
1973 -- Gainesville
1974 -- Johnson
1975 -- North Hall
1976 -- North Hall
1977 -- East Hall
1978 -- East Hall
1979 -- East Hall
1980 -- North Hall
1981 -- East Hall
1982 -- North Hall
1983 -- East Hall
1984 -- East Hall
1985 -- East Hall
1986 -- North Hall
1987 -- North Hall
1988 -- North Hall
1989 -- Johnson
1990 -- North Hall
1991 -- Johnson
1992 -- Gainesville
1993 -- Gainesville
1994 -- Gainesville
1995 -- Gainesville
1996 -- East Hall
1997 -- West Hall
1998 -- West Hall
1999 -- West Hall
2000 -- West Hall
2001 -- East Hall
2002 -- Gainesville
2003 -- Flowery Branch
2004 -- Johnson
2005 -- Gainesville
2006 -- East Hall
2007 -- North Hall
2008 -- Gainesville
2009 -- North Hall
2010 -- East Hall
2011 -- East Hall
2012 -- Chestatee
2013 -- Gainesville
2014 -- Gainesville
2015 -- Flowery Branch

*-South Hall became Johnson High

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