Updates since first published: Region 3-AAAAAA will play Saturday, Monday and Tuesday. Regions 7-AAAAAA and 8-AAAAAA will start Monday and finish Wednesday.
After days of scrambling, scheduling and re-scheduling, Class AAAAAA’s eight region basketball tournaments appear set again, with most starting or resuming on Saturday.
Regions 4, 7 an d 8 will be holding finals on Wednesday.
Only Region 1-AAAAAA in South Georgia has had no schedule changes. Finals will be Friday, giving their state qualifiers at least a week to prepare and scout before first-round state playoff games.
Five other tournaments will begin or resume on Saturday, with the exceptions of Gwinnett County-dominated regions 7 and 8. Regions 7 and 8 will play Monday through Wednesday. With schools closed another day Friday, they wanted time for teams to be able to get in one practice day ahead of the next round.
Tournament directors were pleased with the GHSA’s announcement Wednesday that regions had two extra days – until Wednesday, Feb. 19 – to finish.
‘’This will help immensely with executing a fair tournament,’’ said Bob VanAlstyne, tournament director of Region 5, which will play its finals on Tuesday. “If school is held Friday or activities are permitted, our teams will be able to hold a practice prior to the start of the tournament on Saturday. For the teams that win Saturday, all three counties have granted teams permission to practice on Sunday. Wednesday then will be a practice day for all teams qualifying for the state tournament.’’
Here is a region-by-region look at where things stand —
Region 1 – The only tournament unaffected by the weather will resume tonight (Thursday) in Brunswick and finish Friday. State qualifiers would have several days to scout Region 3, which will be their first-round opponents in the state playoffs.
Region 2 – The tournament will begin Saturday and end Tuesday.
Region 3 – The region confirmed Friday that the tournament will be played Saturday, Monday and Tuesday.
Region 4 – This is one of only two regions scheduled to play finals as late as Wednesday. (The other is Region 8.) That will give the state qualifiers perhaps only one day of rest until the expected start of the state tournament on Friday, Feb. 21.
Region 5 – The region added a second venue, Woodstock, which will handle Saturday’s girls first round. The rest will play at the original host site, Etowah. The tournament will run Saturday through Tuesday.
Region 7 – The region announced Thursday afternoon that it would start Monday and finish Wednesday.
Region 8 – The region announced Thursday afternoon that it would start Monday and finish Wednesday.