Nearly two weeks ago, we put out some predictions for the NCISAA playoffs. That article offered a brief look at each classification, picking a favorite and darkhorse contender from each. Fast-forward to now, and we’ve reached the final stage of determining who will ultimately win it all. Before looking at the upcoming games, let’s see how we’ve fared thus far:


Prediction- United Faith

Darkhorse- Victory Christian


Prediction- The Burlington School

Darkhorse- Greenfield


Prediction: High Point Christian

Darkhorse: Greensboro Day


Prediction: Christ School

Darkhorse: Providence Day

As we all know, the high school playoffs represent the period where any team can prevail at any given time. Records, reputations, and everything else goes out the window. The basketball is rolled out and we watch who comes out of the cage fight victorious. So many factors and variables determine how to win games. The most talented team doesn’t always win, as evidenced by decades of athletics at the high school, collegiate, and professional levels. Let’s dive into each classification, moving onto 3A (skipping 2A since their semifinal games will be played tonight):

Arguably the most wide-open classification in North Carolina, there was no real safe pick for 3A. Between teams like High Point Christian, Greensboro Day, Concord Academy, and several others, numerous eliminated squads were real title-level contenders. However, Gaston Christian and Forsyth Country Day are the last two remaining.

For Coach Duhon and the Eagles of Gaston Christian, it’s pretty clear that their approach has been working. This team starts and ends with the trio of Cam Newman, Gabriel Mabor, and Joe Rhyne. Let’s take a quick look at each of their averages across the two playoff contests:

Newman- 16.0 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 5.0 APG, 4.0 SPG with 43/36/67 shooting splits

Mabor- 22.5 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 1.0 SPG, 3.0 BPG with 51% FG

Rhyne- 9.0 PPG, 3.5 APG, 1.0 SPG

While no stats are available for the Furies, they’ve maintained a pretty tight rotation behind the likes of Iverson King, Q Williams, Bobby Cannon, Draven Pilson, Jahon Foster, Chris Gomez, Sacha Geremski, and CJ Salyer. Similar to their opponent, they’ve played in two highly competitive battles leading to this point.

While the Furies clearly have more depth, the Eagles have more star-power within their highly productive trio. Several factors will determine who ultimately wins this contest. The interior matchup of Mabor and Cannon could very easily decide the outcome. Foul trouble for either guy would be devastating. Due to their bevy of useful pieces, FCDS can beat opponents in various different ways. However, the transparent dominance by the stars of GCS has yet to be stopped. Will the Furies be able to dictate pace? Who wins the interior matchup? There are countless variables, so it’ll be interesting to see how things iron out. It should be a battle, and either team could easily win. Prediction- Gaston Christian