For the fourth straight season, Henry County baseball coach Chuck Campbell has an unlucky draw in the first round of the state playoffs.
His Warhawks meet red-hot Greenbrier at 4 p.m. Saturday in a doubleheader.
"We've been eliminated by them in the last three years, and in all honesty, we're a little down this year," said Campbell, whose team was ranked No. 1 in Class AAA before Greenbrier swept the Warhawks in the second round last season.
"They say this is supposed to be the best team yet at Greenbrier, and that don't sound too good for us. But that's why you play the game. I sort of feel like Daniel in the lions den."
Greenbrier-Henry County won't be the only baseball matchup pitting teams that played against each other last year. Class AA state runner-up Harlem heads to Hamilton to meet Harris County for the second straight season.
Last season was Harris County's first trip to the state baseball playoffs. The Tigers beat South Effingham in the first round before getting swept by Harlem in Round 2.
"Last year, I think we really didn't know what to expect," Harris coach Mark Gilreath said. "Hopefully, we'll have a little better showing this time around."
Evans hasn't met Valdosta since 1997 when the Knights needed three games to oust the Wildcats in the first round. Just like in 1997, the Wildcats are the No. 2 seed from Region 1-AAAA, but Evans coach Chris Segraves isn't taking the Wildcats lightly.
"We're fortunate to be playing them at home," Segraves said. "We're lucky we don't have a five-hour trip looking at us in the face. We realize that any team coming from that region is a quality baseball team and by no means are we taking them lightly because they're a No. 2 seed. They could be a No. 1 seed in some other baseball regions."
Lakeside has the must make a five-hour bus ride to Valdosta to take on nationally ranked Lowndes at Noel George Field. The Vikings have two players, outfielders Zane Green and Javon Moran who already have signed college scholarships with national powers. Green signed with Clemson, and Moran will head to Auburn.
The top two teams in the Class AA baseball poll will be at home during the first round. Region 3-AA champion and second-ranked Swainsboro meets Pike County on Saturday while top-ranked Screven County plays host to Berrien on Saturday.
In Class A, Washington-Wilkes meets defending Class A state champion Lovett.
Reach Tim Morse at (706) 823-3216.
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