CARROLLTON – They’re one win away from a four-peat.
The Callaway Cavaliers overwhelmed the home-standing Central-Carroll Lions 73-57 on Friday night in the semifinals of the Region 5-AAA tournament.
In a rematch of last year’s championship game, it’ll be Callaway taking on Rockmart at 7:30 p.m. at Central-Carroll High.
A win, and the Cavaliers would have a fourth consecutive region-tournament championship.
“That’s hard to do,” Callaway head coach Terry Hayes said. “They’re excited about it.”
In Friday’s game, Dre Martin paced the Cavaliers with 23 points, Ernest Patillo scored 14 points, and Braylon Sanders had 12 points.
The Cavaliers were limited to 12 points in the first quarter, but they turned it on in the second period with 27 points to take a comfortable lead at the half.
“We played better in the second quarter than we did in the first,” Hayes said. “We got some steals, hit some threes, and played better defense.”
Callaway won both regular-season meetings against Rockmart, and neither game was competitive.
Callaway won the road game 72-49 before winning 80-46 at home in the regular-season finale.
The Callaway Lady Cavaliers were hoping to play for a region title as well, but they lost to Pepperell 45-42 on Friday in the semifinals.
The Lady Cavaliers led 25-19 at the half, and that lead was down to 32-31 as the fourth quarter began.
It remained tight in the fourth period, with Pepperell hanging on for the win to advance to the region-title game against Haralson County.
Callaway will play Rockmart at 3 p.m. today in the third-place game at Central-Carroll.
“We’ve got to regroup, and just be thankful you’re continuing to play,” Callaway coach Deyano Martin said.
Tanesha Johnson led the Lady Cavaliers with nine points, and KiKi Owens, Chyna Cameron and Alexus Scott had eight points apiece.
Callaway beat Pepperell twice during the regular season, but it was unable to make it three in a row.
“Give them credit,” Martin said. “They never stopped, never quit, and hit some big shots.”
WRESTLING: Troup’s Hudson Newton is one victory away from a state championship.
Newton, a senior wrestler for the Tigers, will wrestle for the Class AAAA 285-pound championship against Levi Seabolt of Gilmer County today at the Infinite Energy Arena in Gwinnett County.
Newton, who was a state placer a year ago, has won all three of his matches in the state finals to reach the championship round.
Also for Troup, Chase Seals and Trevor Upchurch will be state placers.
For LaGrange, Emmanuel Mann reached the semifinal round and was a win away from earning a title shot, but he fell short.
Mann and teammate Guy Wegienka will both be state placers.
OF NOTE: For a full recap of the state wrestling finals, see Monday’s sports section.
Reach Kevin Eckleberry at (706) 884-7311 or on Twitter @lagrangesports