AHSAA Final Four brackets set

Published 9:38 am Friday, February 24, 2023

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The brackets for next week’s AHSAA Basketball State Semifinals have been set with Pike County High School and Charles Henderson High School’s opponents finalized.

After the Pike County Lady Bulldogs throttled Houston Academy 42-24 in the South Regional Finals, Clements knocked off Lauderdale County in the Northwest Regional Finals on Feb. 22 by a score of 51-34. Pike County and Clements will now face off in the Class 3A Girls State Semifinals on Feb. 28 at 9 a.m. from Birmingham’s BJCC Legacy Arena.

This will be the Pike County girls’ first appearance in a Final Four, while it’s Clements’ second appearance and first in 3A. Clements won the Class 2A State Championship in 2010. Pike County has been hot all season but really started to heat up when the postseason began. The Lady Dawgs have outscored their opponents 251-99 in postseason play and have won by an average of 29.8 points per win. Pike County has given up an average of 20.4 points per game with just one opponent scoring more than 23 points against the Lady Dawgs since the area tournament began.

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Meanwhile, the Lady Colts finished the regular season with just one loss in 2022-2023 and have also throttled their postseason opponents. After dominating their way through the area tournament, Clements defeated Phil Campbell 51-36 in the sub-regionals before decimating Midfield 85-48 in the regional semifinals and besting Lauderdale County in the Elite 8.

The two schools will meet on Feb. 28 for an opportunity to play in the first Class 3A State Championship for either program and Pike County’s first girls basketball state championship appearance ever. In the other Final Four matchup, Trinity Presbyterian – the Central Region Champs – will play the Northeast Region Champion Susan Moore Lady Bulldogs. The state championship game will be held on March 3 at 12:30 p.m. at Legacy Arena.

The Charles Henderson Lady Trojans earned a measure of revenge over Eufaula in the South Regional Final this week and Pleasant Grove bested Jasper by a score of 44-40 in the Northwest Regional Finals. The two will meet in the Class 5A State Semifinals on March 1 at 3 p.m. at Legacy Arena in Birmingham.

While this will be Pleasant Grove’s first Final Four appearance, the Lady Trojans are right at home in the Final Four. Charles Henderson has made the 5A Final Four in each of the last four seasons and seven of the last eight years. Last season, Charles Henderson lost to Guntersville in the State Semifinals and lost to Mae Jemison in the semifinals in 2021. In 2020, Charles Henderson defeated Center Point in the semifinals and won a state championship against Madison Academy in the finals. Charles Henderson holds a 5-5 record in the Final Four with two state championships and one state runner-up.

Brewbaker Tech defeated Marbury in the Central Regional Finals and Arab knocked off Southside in the Northeast Regional Finals. Brewbaker Tech will play Arab on March 1 at 6 p.m. in the other state semifinal matchup. The state championship will be played March 4 at 9 a.m. at Legacy Arena.

The Charles Henderson boys’ team also knocked off Eufaula in the 5A Southeast Regional Finals this week to earn a spot in the Final Four. Ramsay defeated Fairfield 62-54 in the Northwest Regional Finals, as well. Ramsay spent the majority of 2023 as Class 5A’s No. 1-ranked team and will now clash with Charles Henderson in the State Semifinals on March 1 at 4:30 p.m. at Legacy Arena in Birmingham.

While the CHHS girls team has made the Final Four a home away from home, this is just the third time in school history the Charles Henderson boys have advanced to the state semifinals. In 2005, Charles Henderson lost to Butler in the Final Four and the Trojans also lost to John Carroll in the semifinals in 1998. Ramsay, however, has been a staple in Birmingham playing in 10 Final Fours since 2006, including each of the last five straight seasons. Ramsay holds an 8-8 record in the Final Four with two state championships. The Rams won state titles in 2006 and 2010 but also earned runner-up in each of the last two seasons. Ramsay lost to Lee-Huntsville in the state finals in 2021 and 2022.

While this is the first time CHHS and Ramsay have met on the hardwood this season, the two schools are certainly no stranger to one another. Charles Henderson and Ramsay played in the Class 5A Football State Championship this past season with Ramsay coming out on top 41-20. Many of the prominent players for both teams played in that game, as well.

Valley throttled Central of Clay County in the Central Regional Finals 61-36, while Scottsboro defeated Guntersville 67-66 in the Northeast Regional Finals. Those two schools will meet in the other state semifinal matchup on March 1 at 7:30 p.m. The two winning sides will meet in the Class 5A State Championship on March 4 at 10:45 a.m. in Legacy Arena.

Ticket information for the Final Four can be found at, https://tinyurl.com/3w4np8ea.