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Blue Tide Basketball Team Season Ends In Quarter-Finals
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The Long County High School boys basketball team's quest for a state championship came to a dismal end Friday night in Savannah.
Playing at Savannah State University, the boys took on the East Laurens High School Falcons, and lost the game 79-53.
The Blue Tide had been on a roll coming into the game with a five game win streak, including wins over Appling County for the Region 2-AA Tournament Championship, and wins over Bleckley County and Laney High School in the state tournament. They had clearly been the better team against the Pirates, in the first round of the state playoffs and in the Sweet-16 Round. They had been behind late in both those games, and came from behind to pick up the wins.
The Falcons came into the game as arguably the best team in the state, and definitely the hottest team. The 4-AA team was riding a 20-game winning streak, not having lost since Dec. 22.  That loss was the only blemish on their season. They were ranked number four in the state at the end of the regular season.
East-Laurens now sits at 29-1, going into the Final Four with decisive wins over two teams which were ranked in the top seven (Long County at #7 and Josey High School at #5).  The Falcons also have the best record of any team left in the state tournament, and will be the favorite to go on to take it all, since traditional powerhouse and former #1 Randolph-Clay High School was upset by Dublin High School.
For the Blue Tide, despite the loss, the season still was a success, finishing with an impressive 23-7 record.  This record is even more impressive, when you consider that all of their non-region games were at the 4-A or 5-A level.  This year they also were able to win the 2-AA Region Tournament, and advance to the Elite-8 in the state. Last year they were runners up at the region tournament and were knocked out in the Sweet-16 round.
The Long County team can also look to next year, and have a good chance of going even further as they will have Ricky Rivera, Justin Boyd, Eli Guest, and Jimmy Bacon, who all were recognized at 2-AA Region Tournament, returning.

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