A rivalry buzzer-beater and a championship sweep were the stories of the day Saturday in Middle Georgia region tournament action.
And now those teams can turn their focus to the GHSA playoffs, which begin Friday and Saturday.
Five Middle Georgia boys teams have No. 1 seeds in the Class 2A through Class 6A tournaments, while four girls teams have No. 1 seeds. The Warner Robins boys and girls both won Region 1-5A titles Saturday.
The Warner Robins (24-3) boys host Griffin in the first round.
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“We feel good about where we are,” Warner Robins head coach Jamaal Garman said after Saturday’s win. “But we we still have to take care of business and come to practice and games and be ready to roll.”
The Warner Robins girls are 24-1. They host Morrow in the first round.
“It’s one of our goals, and when we met earlier in the season, to win the region championship was one of our goals,” Warner Robins head coach Tracy Fendley said Saturday. “It’s a small step to get us where we want to be.”
The other Middle Georgia boys teams to earn No. 1 seeds are Upson-Lee and Baldwin (Class 4A), Westside (Class 3A) and Washington County (Class 2A). The other girls teams to earn No. 1 seeds are Northside (Class 6A), Central (Class 3A) and Bleckley County (Class 2A).
Stratford’s girls won the Region 7-1A title with a buzzer-beater to take down FPD. The Class 1A private school and public school brackets will be released later this week based on the power ratings.
Stratford (19-5) clinched a first-round bye in the Class 1A private school playoffs with the victory. Also in Class 1A, Taylor County’s boys won the Region 4-1A title.
“This is a young team,” Stratford head coach Ed Smith said Saturday. “This team had to grow as the season went on. They’re not the biggest, fastest, strongest, but they have a lot of heart and play with a lot of desire. We have only one senior this year and there’s a lot of excitement in the future for us, but in the moment we’re at right now, these young kids have grown up a lot over the course of a year. I’ve never been more proud of a team than I am with this one right now.”
The other Middle Georgia boys teams in Class 2A through Class 6A to reach the playoffs are Veterans and Jones County (5A), Mary Persons, Perry and Howard (Class 4A), Central and Peach County (Class 3A), Dublin, Monticello, Bleckley County, Southwest and Putnam County (Class 2A).
The other Middle Georgia girls teams in Class 2A through Class 6A to reach the playoffs are Houston County (6A), Veterans (5A), Perry, Upson-Lee, West Laurens and Baldwin (4A), Peach County and Westside (3A), Dodge County, Dublin, Washington County, Lamar County and Putnam County (Class 2A).
GHSA State Tournaments
Middle Georgia First-Round Matchups
Greenbrier at Northside
Griffin at Warner Robins
Riverdale at Veterans
Jones County at Statesboro
North Clayton at Upson-Lee
Eastside at Mary Persons
Westover at Baldwin
Perry at Druid Hills
Howard at Henry County
Long County at Westside
Appling County at Central
Peach County at Tattnall County
Albany at Washington County
Fitzgerald at Dublin
Therrell at Monticello
Bleckley County at Thomasville
Southwest at Early County
Putnam County at Hapeville Charter
Greenbrier at Northside
Houston County at Heritage-Conyers
Morrow at Warner Robins
Veterans at Griffin
Luella at Perry
Upson-Lee at North Clayton
West Laurens at Henry County
Baldwin at Carver-Columbus
Liberty County at Central
Long County at Peach County
Westside at Tattnall County
Thomasville at Bleckley County
Early County at Dodge County
Dublin at Fitzgerald
Washington County at Berrien
Lamar County at Armucheee
Putnam County at Douglas