By Matt Goisman
McALESTER — The Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association released its district tournament brackets for basketball teams in classes 2A through 6A on Thursday. Seven local schools compete in those classes.
Of the 12 teams that will start Districts on Feb. 21, both Wilburton teams, the Hartshorne Miners, the Quinton Lady Savages and two other teams are all guaranteed to advance to Regionals.
Hartshorne will host both the District 8 boys’ and girls’ tournaments starting Friday. The Crowder Demons and Quinton Savages face off in the district semifinals Friday at 8 p.m., then the winner plays the Miners in the district championship Saturday at 8 p.m.
In a three-team district, the semifinal loser is eliminated from the postseason, but both the district champion and runner-up qualify for Regionals, which are double-elimination. District runners-up have to play through the consolation bracket the rest of the way, but district champions play through the winners’ bracket until they lose, at which point they drop to the consolation bracket.
A loss in a consolation bracket game means elimination.
Both regional qualifiers from District 8 would next play Feb. 27 at Quinton, the runner-up playing at 3 p.m. and the champion at 8 p.m.
While Hartshorne earned the top seed and automatic bye in the boys’ tournament, Quinton did so in the girls’ tournament. Crowder and Hartshorne will play Friday at 6:30 p.m. in the semifinals, then the winner will face the Lady Savages on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
The district runner-up next plays Feb. 27 at Quinton at 1:30 p.m. The champion plays at 8 p.m.
Canadian will be in District 5, with both teams playing Wetumka in the semifinals Friday at Dale. The Lady Cougars start at 6:30 p.m., the Cougars start at 8, then the girls’ and boys’ winners play Dale in the championships Saturday at 6:30 and 8 p.m., respectively.
District 5 is paired with District 8, so regional start times are the same. The consolation quarter-finals start at 1:30 and 3 p.m. on Feb. 27, and the regional semifinals start at 6:30 and 8 p.m. that same day, with all games at Quinton.
Savanna is the fifth Class 2A school in this area, and it’ll compete in District 7. The Lady Bulldogs play Rattan on Friday at 6:30 p.m., then the Bulldogs play Rattan at 8 p.m.
The District 7 Tournament takes place at Talihina, which has received automatic byes into the boys’ and girls’ district championships Saturday. The girls’ and boys’ District 7 runners-up start Regionals on Feb. 27 at Canadian at 1:30 and 3 p.m., respectively, then the champions play at 6:30 and 8 p.m.
Wilburton is the only local Class 3A school, and it’ll play at Antlers in the District 7 Tournament on Saturday. With only two teams in the district, both are guaranteed to advance to Regionals.
The District 7 runners-up next play Feb. 27 at Wilburton at 1:30 and 3 p.m. The champions play that same day at 6:30 and 8 p.m.
Like Class 2A, Class 3A regional and area tournaments are double-elimination.
In Class 5A, McAlester’s boys have been assigned to Region 2, its’ girls to Region 3. The Lady Buffs play Bishop Kelley on Feb. 27 at Collinsville at 6:30 p.m., and the Buffs play Tulsa East Central on Feb. 28 at Bishop Kelley in Tulsa at 6:30 p.m.
A loss in either regional semifinal would mean postseason elimination. If McAlester can get to the March 1 regional finals, it’ll automatically qualify for the following weekend’s area tournament.
Contact Matt Goisman at firstname.lastname@example.org.