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Commentary: Boys lacrosse playoffs a debacle, but it works in Harford's favor

Despite the past couple days of weather, boys and girls lacrosse teams and a few baseball and softball teams still found dry enough conditions to continue their seasons. In some cases though, the games meant the end of a season and for some, a high school career.

Too often, when we get to these times of a sports season and we see the region brackets unfold, our minds get rattled by what the state deems best. I complained in this column some time ago when one of our teams had to travel to the lower Eastern Shore for a first-round or quarterfinal game. Things have improved slightly, but still not perfect.

That brings us to this year's debacle. Yes, debacle. That's all I can say and as I explain it, you can be the judge.

If you've been following the boys lacrosse playoff action, then you might know what I'm referring to. It's about the Class 1A-2A East and North region brackets.

As has been the case for years, many of our teams and, regardless of the sport, especially those in the 2A classification, get tossed into the East region with schools from the Eastern Shore. This year, there's no exception, unless you're the Patterson Mill Huskies or Joppatowne Mariners.

It's those two, Joppatowne and Patterson Mill, who were the odd, or should I say even, teams out of the East. Both showed up in the North region because there wasn't enough room in the District VII sectional bracket of the East region. Interestingly enough, there were just five teams in the District VIII sectional of the same bracket. That includes schools from Kent County down to Parkside in Salisbury.

Just a quick observation. Couldn't Bo Manor make a trip to Kent County as easily as Elkton making the trip to Fallston? Just saying.

Here's the kicker for me though.

I'm pretty sure on any map you use, you'll find Patterson Mill is slightly more East than Fallston. I know it's a matter of few miles, but it is what it is.

Fallston is also North of Patterson Mill, while Joppatowne is South of both. Patterson Mill and Joppatowne were thrown into the North, simply because there was no room at the inn, I mean East. Wait a minute, I thought the wise men came from the East? Oops, wrong story.

Anyway, our state wise men or women chose to send them off to the North. Why not the South? That bracket has just eight teams and all eight received byes into the quarterfinal round. I'll tell you why, cause that's the South and you don't mess with the South.

Well, here's the good thing about the debacle and a prediction to hang your hats and your bets on. Sometime Wednesday, we will learn that both Patterson Mill and Fallston are region champions. Both will be in state semifinals at Bel Air High School this weekend and, yes, both will find themselves in next week's Class 1A-2A state title game at UMBC. If they had sent Joppatowne to the South, we'd have three teams in the state semis.

So, let's give a big thank you to the state for a debacle that actually works in our favor.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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