Spruce Creek (10-5) enters the girls' Five Star Conference tournament at the top of its game and head coach Kelvin Hamm hopes to show why the Hawks are a top-tier team.
"This group is ready to show that they are the best team in this area," Hamm said. "We never really get a chance to play these local schools, so it will be a good time."
The eight-team single-game elimination tournament begins Saturday with quarterfinal matchups at New Smyrna Beach High School and continues next week, culminating with next Friday's championship game.
Creek, ranked fifth in the Class 7A state rankings, enters as the top seed this weekend.
As the No. 1 seed they will face No. 8 Pine Ridge in the quarterfinals Saturday. This begins the final stretch of a hard season for the Hawks.
"I've been challenging them to get better day after day," Hamm said. "This part of the season it is crucial to stay focused and piece all of that hard together and get a win streak going."
Three of Spruce Creek's starters —Tyja Bean, Kiana Beans and Ya'Nija Lawson — are averaging double-digits in points per game. Lawson leads with 14 per game and 10 rebounds as well.
While Hamm expects the Hawks to play three games and be in the conference final, other area programs are set on getting their opportunity to take down one of the best programs around.
The bracket has a set of dark horses that can make surprise runs. Second seed Deltona and No. 3 New Smyrna Beach have an opportunity to meet each other in the semifinal round.
The eight-team pool is rounded out by a No. 4 and 5 matchup between University and Seabreeze, as No. 6 Flagler Palm Coast faces NSB, No. 7 DeLand faces Pine Ridge.
This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: High school basketball: Volusia-Flagler Five Star tourney tips off