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Well, two of my boys basketball picks from last week’s column were proven wrong with upset victories, and a couple I just plain got wrong, so let’s touch on those, and talk about who’s still alive in the playoffs as of Thursday.

The best MPSSAA regional tournament game thus far, at least among those played by Harford County teams, came on Tuesday when the C. Milton Wright boys pulled out a 66-65 victory over the Hereford Bulls in the 3A north’s second round. I said last Friday that I thought the Mustangs, after advancing past Catonsville on Saturday, would bow out in the second round with a loss to Hereford. Looking back, I shouldn’t have put so much stock in Hereford’s high seeding (third), considering that way back at the beginning of the season, the Bulls just barely got by North Harford, winning 53-50, whereas CMW beat the Hawks by 25 a month later (and considering that the MPSSAA tournament seeds often look like they were drawn out of a bingo tumbler). So, way to go Mustangs for proving me wrong. In the next round they have to play the second-seeded Parkville team in the regional semifinal. Hopefully, they prove me wrong again and make it to the final, but I don’t see them beating Parkville, which is 20-7 overall with most of the losses coming to a “who’s who” of the best programs in the state.

Another game where I made a bum pick was the 2A east quarterfinal which pitted top-seeded Fallston against North East. The division champion Cougars beat North East by 14 last time they met, but on Tuesday a slow first quarter doomed the Cougars to a 75-70 loss, and an exit from the tournament. The Indians beat both North Harford and Patterson Mill this season, but I was pretty confident that Fallston had their number.

Fallston’s loss puts North East in the regional semifinal with the second-seeded Edgewood Rams, who topped Bel Air on Tuesday in their first tournament game. I’m not predicting a close finish or a blowout in the semifinal, but I will say the Rams are going to win and move on, and where they go next could make for an interesting show down. Down on the other half of the bracket, North Caroline and Easton are squaring off in the other semifinal. If Easton and Edgewood both win, it would mean a rematch of last year’s epic, five-overtime 2A east regional championship game which Easton won, 110-108. It may be wishful thinking, but I’m picking Easton to beat North Caroline, and for Edgewood to avenge last year’s loss. I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for a quintuple-overtime epic though.

The only other Harford County team left alive through Wednesday is Havre de Grace, and by the time you read this the Warriors, who advanced to the 1A north semifinal by spanking Bo Manor, will have played Owings Mills. I said last week that the Warriors would make it to the regional title game by beating Owings Mills, and I’m sticking with my pick. Unfortunately, if Havre de Grace does advance to the final, they won’t be playing Joppatowne, which is what I predicted last week. The Mariners were knocked out of the tournament on Tuesday with a 68-60 loss to New Town.

I had North Harford moving to the 3A north semifinal, but the Hawks got beat, 60-42, by Mergenthaler on Tuesday. Patterson Mill followed my picks by topping Harford Tech, then bowing out to Owings Mills in the 1A north’s second round. I also had Aberdeen picked right, as the Eagles were knocked out of the 3A north by the top-seeded Milford Mill squad. It wasn’t the best week, but I’ve had worse.


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