The Airline Vikings, Bossier Bearkats and Plain Dealing Lions have qualified for the high school boys basketball state playoffs.
District 1-5A champion Airline, the No. 20 seed, will play a familiar foe in a Class 5A first-round game. The Vikings (23-10) will face No. 13 St. Amant (22-10) for the third time this season on Friday. Tip-off is 6:30 p.m. and the game will be played at Dutchtown High.
The Gators won both previous meetings, edging the Vikings 54-53 in the St. Amant tournament on Dec. 1 and winning 82-62 in the championship game of the Doc Edwards Memorial Invitational on Dec. 30 at Airline.
The Doc Edwards title game was Airline’s last loss. The Vikings reeled off 12 straight district victories after that.
Airline lost to Slidell 60-51 in the first round last season.
District 1-4A co-champion Bossier nabbed the No. 2 seed in Class 4A. The Bearkats (26-6) will host No. 31 Franklinton (18-10) in the first round Friday.
District 1-4A co-champ Woodlawn and Bossier were 1-2 in the power rankings that determine playoff seedings for most of the second half of the season. But Westgate (19-5) moved up to No. 1 in the final rankings and Woodlawn (27-5) dropped to No. 3.
Bossier was the No. 2 seed last year, but the Bearkats lost to No. 7 A.J. Ellender 60-37 in the quarterfinals. Bossier won the 2015-16 state title as the No. 4 seed.
Plain Dealing (12-16), the No. 19 seed in Class 1A, will travel to No. 19 Centreville (13-11) at 6 p.m. Friday in the first round.
The Lions lost to Tensas 69-58 in the first round last season.
— Russell Hedges, firstname.lastname@example.org