Region 8-6A was considered by many as the most competitive girls’ league in the state of Mississippi this season.
And for good reason. That’s because three-fourths of the Class 6A South State quarterfinal field in girls’ basketball is made up of teams from that league.
Biloxi, Gulfport, and Harrison Central will all converge on Marvin R. White Coliseum in Poplarville on the campus of Pearl River Community College Saturday as part of the “Elite Eight” left in contention for the girls’ Class 6A state championship.
The only team from Region 8-6A that didn’t qualify for the state playoffs was the Hancock Lady Hawks, who were ranked the top overall team in the state most of the year compiling a 27-1 regular season mark with only a loss to Gulfport in that span. But Hancock dropped two straight games in the league tournament, to Biloxi and then Gulfport, to see its season come to a stunning halt.
Harrison Central joined the fray on Saturday night with a hard-fought 56-50 road win over Brandon in second-round action. The HCHS girls will meet arch-rival and region-foe Gulfport Saturday at 5:30 at PRCC, a game that will follow the Biloxi-Northwest Rankin contest at 4 p.m.
Biloxi, the Region 8-6A tourney champs as the third seed in the event, punched its ticket to the quarterfinals on Friday night as they mauled visiting Meridian 53-34. Senior standout Shaneal Corpuz registered yet another double-double on the night for the Lady Indians, pouring in a game-high 24 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. Biloxi guard Amari Meredith finished with 12 points, all coming on four made 3-pointers and eighth-grade center Zaniya Johnson just missed a double-double as she scored nine points and collected 10 boards.
The Biloxi girls moved to 24-6 with their latest win, and the Lady Indians have now won six straight games under the direction of head coach Devin Hill.
Meanwhile, Gulfport, who will face Harrison Central for the fourth time this season, knocked off the home-standing D’Ibervile Lady Warriors in one of the biggest games in the state basketball playoffs Friday night.
The Lady Admirals blew past DHS 64-43 in the second round of the Class 6A bracket to advance to the South State quarterfinal round in Poplarville.
It marked the second straight 20-point plus win on the road in the playoffs for head coach Marcus Price’s GHS team this week. However, the win at D’Iberville was much closer to home after the Lady Admirals traveled to Terry High on Monday and came home with a similarly comfortable 56-31 win.
Maddie O’Dell tallied a game-high 21 points to guide Gulfport to the win, while Saniah Price was right behind her with 20 points in the winning effort. The Lady Admirals now stand 22-9 overall with their latest win. On Tuesday, in their playoff opener, the Gulfport girls traveled along with their male counterparts to Terry to open the playoffs and the Lady Admirals advanced with an easy 56-31 win as the Lady Admirals got a game-high 17 points from Maddie Odell while Saniah Price added 16 points to the winning cause.
228Sports will have complete coverage of the Class 6A girls and boys’ South state quarterfinal action as well as the action from both sides of the bracket in Class 5A and Class 4A.