On the boys side, River Hill earned the top seed in Section I of 2A South after finishing the regular season 18-4 overall and winning a share of its second straight county championship. Oakland Mills (17-5), which shared the county crown with the Hawks, is the second seed in the section. Both teams have first-round byes.
Centennial (14-8) won its final eight games of the regular season on the way to earning the top seed in Section I of the 3A East region. The Eagles, along with Reservoir (14-8) and Mt. Hebron (12-10), have opening round byes.
Howard (3-19) is the county’s lone team in 4A North, earning a No. 5 seed in Section I.
For the girls, Howard (21-1) has the top seed in Section I of the 4A North region after wrapping up a piece of this year’s county championship. The Lions have now won outright or shared three straight county titles.
In 3A East, Long Reach (17-2) is the top seed in Section I after earning their own piece of the county championship — the first in program history. The Lightning, along with Reservoir (14-8) and Centennial (11-11), have opening round byes.
Oakland Mills (14-8) is the county’s top girls team in terms of seeding in 2A South, earning the No. 1 seed in Section I. The Scorpions and Glenelg (15-7), which is seeded second in the same section, each have opening round byes.
The opening round of the playoffs is scheduled to tip off on Friday night, with the better seed serving as the home team. For the schools that have home games for both their boys and girls teams to begin the playoffs, there is the potential for double headers.
First round match-ups involving Howard County teams include: Howard boys at Catonsville (4A North), Long Reach boys at Atholton at 7 p.m. Friday (3A East), Mt. Hebron girls at Atholton at 5 p.m. Friday (3A East), Hammond boys at Glenelg at 7 p.m. Friday (2A South), Marriotts Ridge boys at Wilde Lake (2A South), Wilde Lake girls at Marriotts Ridge (2A South) and Hammond girls at River Hill at 6 p.m. (2A South).
The state semifinals for the boys are scheduled for March 8 (3A and 4A) and March 9 (1A and 2A) at the Xfinity Center on the campus of the University of Maryland. The state finals will follow on March 10.