PREP BASKETBALL: Local teams tipping off Regional Tournament games Friday night

L-R: Fairview’s Daisy Manasco (10), West Point’s Lexi Shadix (1), Good Hope’s Michael Lowe (4). (Martha Needham for The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – We’re now in the thick of postseason basketball and only five local teams remain in the field to chase a state title. The defending 2A state champion Lady Eagles of Cold Springs will tip things off in the Northwest Regional at Wallace State’s Tom Drake Coliseum Friday night. The reigning Cullman County Tournament champions, the West Point Lady Warriors will play at Wallace Saturday at noon before the Hanceville Bulldogs get things underway at the Northeast Regional Saturday night. The Bulldogs will play at Jacksonville State at 7:30 p.m. before Fairview and Good Hope get on the court Monday morning. The Lady Aggies will play bright and early at 9 a.m. with the Raiders immediately following them at 10:30.

Northwest Regional – Wallace State

(28-4) Cold Springs v. (14-12) Tanner: Friday – 6 p.m.

It’s February, which means the Cold Springs Lady Eagles are gunning for another blue map and they’re getting hot at the right time. After falling to West Point in late January, Cold Springs has won its last five and in their first three postseason games, the Lady Eagles have outscored their opponents by a combined 202 points. Cold Springs set a new state record with 23 made three-pointers in its 87-24 sub-regional win over Sumiton Christian earlier this week and if the Lady Eagles continue to build momentum at the Northwest Regional against Tanner Friday night, they could be looking at a return to Birmingham next week.

(28-5) West Point v. (24-9) Mortimer Jordan: Saturday – noon

The Lady Warriors are rolling right now and riding a 15-game winning streak into Saturday’s matchup with Mortimer Jordan at the Northwest Regional. West Point demolished its first two postseason opponents in the area tournament but needed a clutch performance against East Limestone to survive a tight sub-regional game and advance. Mortimer Jordan is bringing a high-powered offense into Saturday’s game, so it’ll take another great effort on the defensive end for the Lady Warriors to move on to the elite eight.

Northeast Regional – Jacksonville State

(16-13) Hanceville v. (24-4) Piedmont: Saturday – 7:30 p.m.

Hanceville is headed back to the Northeast Regional after a dramatic overtime win over Locust Fork in the sub-regional round, but the Bulldogs will have their hands full Saturday night. The top-ranked Piedmont Bulldogs will square off against Hanceville in a rematch of last year’s Northeast Regional pairing and the local Bulldogs will be looking for a different result. Piedmont eliminated Hanceville in this game a year ago so there’s no doubt that the hometown Bulldogs will be ready to play when the ball is tipped Saturday night.

(18-11) Fairview v. (25-3) Anniston: Monday – 9 a.m.

After splitting their area tournament meetings with Ashville and Oneonta, the Lady Aggies pulled away from North Jackson on the road to earn a spot in the Northeast Regional at Jacksonville State for the second consecutive season. Fairview will have a tall task ahead of them Monday morning. Anniston comes into the matchup at the fourth-ranked team in 4A and sent the Lady Aggies home in this game a year ago. Fairview will be looking to flip the script this time around, but it’ll take a great effort on both ends of the floor to topple the Lady Bulldogs.

(26-4) Good Hope v. (21-8) Anniston: Monday – 10:30 a.m.

It’s been over a decade since the Raiders were playing at a Regional tournament but it’s no surprise that this year’s squad pulled it off. This year’s Good Hope team is senior-laden, just tied the school record for wins in a season and still hungry for more. The Raiders toppled Fairview in the opening round of their area tournament to earn a sub-regional position but were forced to go on the road after falling to Oneonta in the area tournament finals. Thanks in large part to 41 points from Good Hope’s new all-time leading scorer Cole Maddox, the Raiders eliminated D.A.R in the sub-regional round and will now face an Anniston squad that has won 11 of its last 12 games. When things are clicking offensively Good Hope is hard to stop but at this stage of the postseason, it’ll take great performances from multiple Raiders on both ends of the floor to survive and advance.

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