After an exciting county title chase which came down to the last day of the season, Howard County's baseball teams are set to up the stakes with the regional playoffs, beginning Friday.
Recently crowned county champion Mt. Hebron, defending 3A state champion Reservoir, and 2A South representative Marriotts Ridge all earned top seeds and first round byes.
Atholton, the 2014 county champion, and Glenelg earned the second and third seeds in the 3A East, and the Raiders will host the Gladiators on Monday in the quarterfinals. Howard, the county's lone 4A representative, also secured a No. 2 seed good for a first round bye.
Friday's slate of games features Oakland Mills at Hammond in the 2A South, and — in the 3A East — River Hill at Wilde Lake, Centennial at Poly and Long Reach at City.
On Monday, Howard will host Sherwood, Mt. Hebron will host the winner of City/Long Reach, Digital Harbor will host the winner of Poly/Centennial, Reservoir will host the winner of Wilde Lake/River Hill, Atholton will host Glenelg, and Marriotts Ridge will host the winner of Hammond/Oakland Mills.