This stage of the high school basketball season is always interesting.
Teams have played a good portion of their region schedules, but they still have a solid month of games left. It's enough time to assess the good and the bad up to this point, so for today let's focus on the positives.
While plenty of Gwinnett teams are winning, it's more fun to look at those that have made the biggest turnarounds so far in 2012-13. So here are my top 10 teams who have improved the greatest thus far since the 2011-12 season.
New head coach Tina Smosny-McGriff is off to a great start. The Patriots already have seven wins, one off their total for all of last season.
Probably the turnaround team and feel-good story of the season. Their up-tempo style and depth (everyone plays) has led to a 13-3 start, much better than last season's 6-20 mark.
--Central Gwinnett girls
The Black Knights weren't bad last season at 13-13, but their 11-5 record signals they'll likely have a much better finish this season.
--Collins Hill boys
Eric Nathan's team won nine games in his first season, but the Eagles have already bettered that with an 11-6 start.
New coach Russ Triaga has the Falcons headed in the right direction with a 10-5 start, giving hopes to improving on last season's 15-14 record.
The Wildcats have continued their recent upswing with a 10-6 start, which is already two wins better than their 2011-12 total.
--Greater Atlanta Christian girls
It's not easy to improve on a 20-9 season, but the Spartans are ready to do it. They're off to a 13-1 start this season.
New head coach Geoffrey Pierce has made an immediate impact with the Rams, who are 8-7 after going 4-21 last season.
--Mountain View girls
Through 15 games, the Bears have 11 wins, the same total they had in 26 games last season.
The young Longhorns have improved yearly and their 9-7 start leaves them three wins away from their 2011-12 total and eyeing a state playoff berth.
Will Hammock can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. His column appears on Thursdays. For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/willhammock.