Class AA blog: Round 1 recap

Round 1 of the Class AA playoffs is in the books, with the tournament resuming on Wednesday and Thursday with Round 2. Let’s breakdown all the action from last weekend’s games and compare them against my predictions heading in.

Boys

Predictions by Adam Krohn.

(For the official, updated GHSA bracket complete with scores, go here.)

We’ll start in the upper-left quadrant. Looks like I sold the defending state champs, Thomasville, short. Unranked, the Bulldogs hosted and eliminated the other Bulldogs, No. 9-ranked Butler, 66-52. 

Thomasville will in all likelihood meet its fate in Round 2, where the top-ranked, undefeated Woodville-Tompkins Wolverines await them. As I noted in “games to watch,” the Wolverines were expected to coast to a double-digit win over Dublin and that’s what they did, 62-46.

Looks like I underestimated Rockmart, which edged Hapeville Charter, 55-49. I had the winner of that game losing to Elbert County in the next round to No. 5 Elbert County anyway. The Blue Devils beat Heard County 62-52.

My bracket went unscathed in the lower-left quadrant. It turns out — with their 53-30 loss to Northeast-Macon — that the Toombs County Bulldogs’ playoffs magic was limited to denying Swainsboro a spot in the state tournament, which is still one heck of a season highlight for them, and, frankly, a big accomplishment for a team that finished the regular season 4-10 in Region 2 play. It’s one of those seasons that doesn’t warrant a banner in the school gymnasium, yet, will still be talked about for years to come.

The two teams I have reaching the quarterfinals from the lower-left looked strong: in addition to Northeast-Macon’s lopsided win, Therrell beat Model 74-59. 

In the upper-right quadrant, I blanked on Banks County, which I had advancing to the quarterfinals. Instead, the Leopards lost 86-83 in overtime at home to Callaway. This was despite the Leopards getting 55 points from Carl Cleveland, according to MainStreetNews.

In the lower-left quadrant I was 4-for-4, though it was expected that the higher seed advance in each of those games. 

Girls

Predictions by Adam Krohn.

(For the official, updated GHSA bracket complete with scores, go here.)

These predictions are looking a lot cleaner than on the boys’ side, with the damage limited to the lower-right quadrant. Further, I had the other team winning in the second round anyway.

In the upper-left quadrant are the Early County Lady Bobcats, whom I have reaching the championship to face Region rival Fitzgerald. They beat Jefferson County 72-34 behind 18 points (7-of-14 from the field including 1-for-1 from 3-point range), 10 rebounds and three blocks.

In the lower-left quadrant, all except one game was decided by double digits. Lamar County edged Monticello 63-62. Though details were scarce, Barnesville.com reported that the game was decided in the final 0.3 seconds. Further, the publication reported something I was unaware of, which is that Lady Trojans starter Trinity Fuller suffered an on-court knee injury last week that was so serious she nearly lost her leg.

The upper-right quadrant featured two thrillers: Swainsboro edged East Laurens 51-48 and Elbert County topped Callaway 47-45. Not much is known of the Swainsboro game other than Dynesha Brown had 17 points and five steals for the Lady Tigers, while freshman Meyah Rawls pulled down 12 boards. Callaway coughed up a late lead in its game.

Last and, for me, the least, is the lower-right quadrant where I botched the Washington County-Bryan County and Gordon Central-Douglass games. No. 8 Bryan County kept the No. 10 Lady Golden Hawks at arm’s length on the way to a 39-31 win. With Douglass, I’ll be honest, I’m not sure what happened with that pick. I think I confused Gordon Central and Model, and I somehow overlooked that Douglass entered the rankings toward the end of the season. It was an oversight, and had I looked more closely, I probably would have picked the Lady Astros to win that game from the beginning. My bad. 

Check back Thursday when we explore what to watch for in Round 2.

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