MACON -- It was no coincidence that Kell followed the exact same itinerary it kept a year ago when winning the school’s first state championship. Same hotel. Same pregame meal. Same walk-through schedule. Even the same locker room at the Macon Coliseum.

Coach Jermaine Sellers’ nod toward keeping the same pattern -- or just plain superstition -- worked out just fine on Thursday. Kell, the No. 1 team in Class 5A all season, outlasted No. 2-ranked Eagle’s Landing 62-51 to win its second straight championship in a rematch of last year’s final.

“Everything just kind of fell into place,” Sellers said.

It all fell into place again for senior C.J. Brown, who had 21 points and nine rebounds in the win. The 6-foot-7 South Florida commit scored 23 points in last year’s championship game.

“He has become a tremendous leader and I think Jaylen Colon (14 points, six rebounds) is even more important, being a four-year varsity player, played in this game three times, so we’ll definitely miss his experience, too.”

Kell (28-3) finished the season with a 27-game winning streak. Their last loss came on Nov. 21 against Grayson, who will play for the Class 7A title on Saturday. Cannon Richards scored eight points with 10 rebounds.

Eagle’s Landing (23-8) got 17 points and six rebounds from Chris Morris. Dwight Brown had nine points and eight rebounds.

The big difference was on the glass. Kell outrebounded Eagle’s Landing 35-25 and scored 16 second-chance points.

“I think good old David Boyd (the late Hall of Famer who coached Sellers and was a constant source of encouragement) is looking down and smiling,” Sellers said “He always said, ‘No rebounds, no rings.’ I think we got more rebounds, and we got another ring.”

Kell led from the opening basket of the game. The Longhorns stretched their lead to 23-15 at 4:20 in the half when C.J. Brown made back-to-back three-point plays. But Eagle’s Landing reeled off three straight buckets and cut Kell’s lead to 26-24 at halftime.

Eagle’s Landing scored six straight points to tie the game 35-35, but could never take the lead. Kell regained the edge by scoring the final seven points of the period – including a gut-busting 3-pointer by Connor Staphylaris at the buzzer.

Kell put it away with an 8-0 run in the middle of the fourth period that included a pair of 3-point daggers from Staphylaris that extended the advantage to 13 points. Sellers said Staphylaris had been in a shooting slump entering the final.

“That was huge for us and also for him because he’s been struggling the last few games,” Sellers said. “With him doing that for us, that’s a bonus.”

Sellers said the players handled the pressure that comes with being the No. 1 team all season. They did not waver under the weight of the championship game.

“Our players took care of that,” Sellers said. “We would challenge them at practice to build that competition. Some of our practices were harder than our games. That was the key to being No. 1 all season.”