FLORENCE, S.C. — The 2021 SCISA state basketball tournaments are set to tip off Friday across the state with the finals slated for Feb. 27 at the Sumter Civic Center.
Brackets were released for the three classifications Wednesday and three Pee Dee area teams earned No. 1 seeds and two were given first-round byes.
Trinity Collegiate School’s boys are the No. 1 seed in the lower bracket portion of the 3A tournament — the second year in a row the Titans have gotten a top seed. They’ll have a bye in the opening round and won’t play until Wednesday against either Ben Lippen or Laurence Manning Academy.
“We’re excited for our program to earn a one seed for the second year in a row,” Trinity coach Mike Teasley said. “We like where we’re at in our bracket, and there’s a lot of teams that are very balanced this year so I think it’s going to be an exciting tournament.
“We’re fortunate that our second-round matchup will be against two teams that we’re familiar with.”
The TCS girls also earned a first-round bye as the No. 2 seed in the 3A lower bracket and will play the winner of the Hammond/LMA matchup next Tuesday in Sumter.
Florence Christian School’s girls will begin play on Friday as the No. 3 seed in the upper portion of the bracket. The Eagles will face Heathwood Hall in Sumter at 4 p.m. with the victor earning a Tuesday matchup against second-seeded First Baptist.
“We’re just happy to be playing basketball,” FCS coach Neil Minton said of his 11-2 squad as it enters postseason play. “It’s been a couple weeks since we’ve gotten back on the court and we’re playing pretty well right now. We’re having fun. This year’s a little different in that it’s great just being out there and having this opportunity.”
The Eagles were supposed to play the Highlanders earlier in the year, but that matchup was canceled.
“I was starting to prepare for them a little bit earlier in the year,” Minton said. “They’re well-coached and are kind of a veteran team. It’s going to be a battle and a tough game for us.”
In 2A boys, region rivals Dillon Christian School and Pee Dee Academy both earned No. 1 seeds and could potentially meet in the semifinals on Feb. 25. The lone meeting between the two teams was won by the Warriors in overtime earlier this year.
First things first, though, as DCS will take on fourth-seeded Beaufort Academy on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Wilson Hall’s “A” gym. The Golden Eagles will face No. 4 Thomas Sumter on Saturday in noon in the same gymnasium.
Also in 2A, the second-seeded Carolina Academy boys will take on John Paul II at noon on Saturday in Wilson Hall’s “B” gym.
On the girls’ side, The King’s Academy earned a No. 4 seed and will match up with top-seeded Hilton Head Christian on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Sumter Civic Center. Pee Dee Academy, a No. 3 seed, will face Beaufort Academy at 6:30 p.m. while third-seeded Lee Academy will take on John Paull II at 4:30 p.m. Both of those contests will be held in Wilson Hall’s “B” gym.