The Coast's two most storied boys basketball programs meet for the 8-6A title at Hancock on Friday while the St. Martin boys will look to back up their preseason expectations in the 7-6A championship at D'Iberville.
Biloxi and Gulfport face off at 8:30 p.m. Friday in the 8-6A title game in a game pitting the Coast's two biggest basketball rivals.
Gulfport (18-10) won both of its games over Biloxi (20-9) in the regular season by the scores of 60-49 and 63-50.
St. Martin thumped D'Iberville, 68-49, Tuesday to set up Friday's 7:30 p.m. title game match with No. 1 seed George County. The Yellow Jackets (20-7) have won six of seven games following a mid-season lull.
George County and St. Martin split the two games they played in region competition. George County beat St. Martin, 68-56, in Lucedale on Jan. 12 before the Yellow Jackets rolled to a 80-57 win over the Rebels on Jan. 22.
"The first time we played them was probably the worst game of my career in terms of the way my team played," St. Martin coach Charlie Pavlus said. "A lot of that had to do with the way George County played. They did a good job of making us look bad. The second time we played them, I thought we played really, really well. We got 30 points in transition in that game.
"We did a real good job of keeping (George County star guard LaRaymond Spivery in front of us). The same thing has got to happen."
It will be a Pascagoula-West Harrison doubleheader in the 8-5A title games at Gautier on Friday.
The No. 1 seed Pascagoula boys (21-4) will look to maintain a perfect mark against region opponents in an 8:30 p.m. game against the Hurricanes. The No. 1 seed West Harrison girls (21-2) will be the favorite against the Lady Panthers in the 7 p.m. title contest.
It's another doubleheader in 7-5A with Hattiesburg and Picayune facing off in both the girls and boys title games at Picayune. The girls contest tips off at 7 p.m. and the boys will follow at 8:30 p.m.
In 8-6A girls at Hancock, Harrison Central (18-9) will play Gulfport (17-11) for the championship at 7 p.m. The two teams played a pair of tight contests won by Harrison Central this season. Harrison Central topped Gulfport, 39-35, on Jan. 8 before the Red Rebelettes won 53-47 in overtime on Jan. 29 at Gulfport.
Battle in 7-6A girls action
The St. Martin girls (25-2) will take on an Ocean Springs team (18-7) it beat in a pair of hard-fought contests this season for the 7-6A title at 6 p.m. at D'Iberville.
"We played them really well this year, losing to them by a total of three points," Ocean Springs coach LaShonda Smith said. "We're hoping the third time really is the charm. Our girls have got to come out and do what we do, play good team basketball offensively and defensively. We'll be fine."
The 8-4A girls title game featuring Bay High against the winner of Pass Christian/Moss Point takes place at 7 p.m. Friday at St. Stanislaus. The 8-4A boys championship will follow at 8:30 p.m. and will feature the winners of Pass Christian/Vancleave and Moss Point/Bay High.
After wins Tuesday at Purvis, the Poplarville boys and girls were still in the hunt to reach Friday's title contests in Region 7-4A headed into Thursday night's games.
The St. Patrick girls were also looking to advance to Friday's 8-3A title game when it played Collins at Collins on Thursday night.