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March 15, 2013The California State Playoff Regional Finals are upon us. The Southern Section is loaded with quality games held at Citizens Business Bank Arena, Colony High School both in Ontario and Cathedral Catholic High School in San Diego. The individual talents on display are also impressive, headlined by elite juniors Parker Jackson-Cartwright, Jordan McLaughlin and Stanley Johnson, in addition to Washington bound Jahmel Taylor, Cal bound Jordan Mathews and many more.
Open Division - Citizens Business Bank Arena 8 P.M.:
Mater Dei is led by two very good offensive players in Butler bound Elijah Brown and the 5-star junior Stanley Johnson. They scored 33 and 21 respectively in the Monarchs' victory over Long Beach Poly on Tuesday.
For Etiwanda, when Jordan McLaughlin is good they can beat anyone. His ability to score on offense (shown by his 30 point effort on Tuesday night) and ability to pick up full court on defense sets the tone for everything the Eagles do. Versatile senior Sheldon Blackwell was the x-factor in the last game and he will be counted on once again.
The Pick: Mater Dei -
The Monarchs haven't lost twice to a team since 2006-07 against James Harden's Artesia squad; I don't see that happening on Saturday.
Division 1 - Citizens Business Bank Arena 4 P.M.:
SAMO is led by Cal bound guard Jordan Mathews, who has been on fire lately, as he scored 17 points on Tuesday night. They need a good night from senior guard Trevis Jackson and the other supporting cast to go along with a big afternoon from Mathews to beat the Cubs.
The Pick: Loyola
Division 2 - Citizens Business Bank Arena 12 P.M.:
Reggie Morris is back in the regional finals with a new school, Redondo Union, which is loaded on the perimeter with 4 good guards who are all different ages: senior guard Derek Biale, junior Ian Fox, sophomore Cameron High and freshman Leland Green. The latter 3 should be Division 1 prospects. Fox had 22 points in Tuesday night's victory.
The Pick: JW North
Division 3 - Colony H.S. 8 P.M.:
What St. Augustine lacks in size, they match in skill as senior UC Davis bound guard Brynton Lamar and talented junior Troy Kell are two of the best players in San Diego County. Kell had 14 points, all in the fourth quarter in the Saints' victory on Tuesday.
The Pick: Chaminade
Division 4 - Colony H.S. 4 P.M.:
The Bruins counter with Washington bound senior Jahmel Taylor and Rice bound Marcus Jackson, along with top 100 junior Namon Wright. Taylor had 18 points in their victory over Serra in Gardena on Tuesday. This could be the most high scoring affair of the afternoon.
The Pick: Bishop Montgomery
Division 5 - Cathedral Catholic High School 8:30 P.M.:
The more athletic squad faces a team, San Gabriel Academy, with a big front line. 6'9 Ricky Guo and 6'6 Josh Ajayi combined for 28 points and 23 rebounds in Tuesday night's upset win at Buckley.
The Pick: Horizon Christian
CaliforniaPreps.com will have coverage from both venues and also from the northern california regionals.