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Region final capsule: Nature Coast vs. Eastside

Nature Coast will count on Rohan Blackwood for scoring and rebounding Saturday. He had 19 points and 12 rebounds in the region semifinals against Tarpon Springs.

Photo by Chris Price

Nature Coast will count on Rohan Blackwood for scoring and rebounding Saturday. He had 19 points and 12 rebounds in the region semifinals against Tarpon Springs.

Academy at the Lakes at Orlando Christian Prep

What: Class 2A

When/where: 7 tonight; 500 S Semoran Blvd., Orlando

Directions: I-75 South to Exit 261 for I-4 East; take Exit 82A to merge onto FL-408 East; take Exit 14 toward Semoran Boulevard; turn right on South Semoran Boulevard.

Skinny: Christian Prep (27-1), which has won state titles in four of the past six seasons, spreads around the scoring. And though lacking a true post player, it has good size. Its only loss came to an out-of-state team. Two years ago, the Warriors beat AATL 78-27 in the region final on their way to a state title. USF fans will recognize Christian Prep's coach: former Bulls point guard Reggie Kohn. The Wildcats (17-10) seek their first state semifinal berth.

Key players: When AATL coach Tom Haslam called Christian Prep a "college" team, he wasn't far off. Adonys Henriquez (6 feet 5) is headed to UCF, Jonathan Joseph (6-5) to Stetson and Brandon Maxwell (6-2) to Chattanooga while Dmitri Thompson (6-4) is mulling offers.

Key matchup: Christian Prep point guard Damon Harge is one of the top freshmen in the nation. AATL guard Malik Hall averages more than 20 points and was the driving force in Tuesday's 69-53 win over Bayshore Christian with four first-half 3-pointers. He and other outside threats, such as Ethan Haslam, must be on their game from the perimeter.

Darek Sharp, Times correspondent

Region final capsule: Nature Coast vs. Eastside 02/20/14 [Last modified: Thursday, February 20, 2014 11:20pm]
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