State Games hoops begin Friday

By By Austin Bishop / EMG regional sports director
June 22, 2004
While the numbers are down in the State Games of Mississippi high school basketball tournament set for this weekend, the competition is still expected to be fierce.
In 2003, the boys bracket was maxed out at 24 teams, while 20 girls teams participated. This year, there will be 16 teams in each division.
Among those will be defending boys champion Meridian which has won the boys gold medal four of the last six years and defending girls champion Choctaw Central.
The four boys and four girls pools are broken down into two areas. Pools I and II will play at Meridian High School and Meridian Community College, while Pools III and IV will play at Newton High School and Newton County High School.
The Pool I and II girls winners will meet at 8 p.m. on Saturday at MCC in one semifinal, while the Pool III and IV winners face off at 8 p.m. at Newton County High School.
The Pool 1 and II boys winners will meet at 8 at Meridian High School in one semi, with the other being played at 8 p.m. at Newton High School.
The girls finals are set for Meridian Community College's Ivy Sports Center at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, with the boys title game to follow at 3 p.m.
Among the teams entered in the event are the boys and girls squads from Meridian, West Lauderdale, Northeast Lauderdale, Newton County, Newton High, Choctaw Central, Noxubee County, Lake, Durant and South Pike.
Also participating are girls-only teams from Southeast Lauderdale, Carthage, Neshoba Central, Pillow Academy, East Marion and Warren Central.
Other boys teams entered are Bay High School, Quitman, Wayne County, Meridian II, North Forrest and Bay Springs.
Action begins at 10 a.m. on Friday at four gyms across Lauderdale and Newton Counties, with the last game of the day set for 6:45 p.m. Saturday's games begin at 9 a.m., with the semifinals set for 8 p.m.
Each team is guaranteed four games.

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