But now in its fourth year, this DCSAA tournament might feature the highest stakes yet after brackets were officially released Thursday, with a couple of the city's public powerhouses on the verge of ending the season on an historic note if they can get past some of the area's top private school teams.
First-round games begin Monday and the top four seeds earned a bye. With that in mind, here is a preview of what's to come.
DCSAA boys' basketball tournament
- 12 teams
- Semifinals: March 3 at Verizon Center, 5 and 9 p.m.
- Final: March 6 at George Washington’s Smith Center, 3 p.m.
- Defending champion: St. John’s (Story)
No. 1 seed: St. John's (28-3)
Potential games to watch:
Friendship Collegiate at St. John's — quarterfinals, Tuesday, 7 p.m.
H.D. Woodson vs. Gonzaga — semifinals, March 3, 5 p.m.
The main storyline surrounding the boys' tournament will be whether No. 1 H.D. Woodson can become the first city public school to finish the season undefeated since Spingarn accomplished the feat in 1985. But since Woodson is the No. 2 seed, the two-time defending DCIAA champions will likely need to beat both Gonzaga and St. John's to win a state title. Everyone around the Washington area has been itching to see Woodson face off against a top WCAC team and they may get their wish at Verizon Center next week. How will star Antwan Walker and emerging Division I recruit Kiyon Boyd fare against Gonzaga star Chris Lykes and the Eagles? It's a hypothetical question that could get an answer.
Coming off its first WCAC title since 2000, St. John's will face a challenge in the quarterfinals if it goes against Friendship Collegiate, which faces Thurgood Marshall in a first-round game Monday. The game would feature a battle between two of the area's top point guards in Maryland recruit Anthony Cowan of St. John's and Friendship Collegiate All-Met Alani Moore (Temple). IDEA and Theodore Roosevelt also have a good shot at making a run to the semifinals next week, where they would face the winner of St. John's and Friendship Collegiate/Thurgood Marshall.
DCSAA girls' basketball tournament
- 12 teams
- Semifinals: March 3 at Verizon Center, 3 and 7 p.m.
- Final: March 6 at George Washington’s Smith Center, 1 p.m.
- Defending champion: Georgetown Visitation (Story)
No. 1 seed: Georgetown Visitation (22-3)
Darkhorse: Friendship Collegiate (20-5)
Potential games to watch:
Friendship Collegiate at Wilson — quarterfinals, Tuesday
Georgetown Visitation vs. St. John's — final, March 6
Georgetown Visitation and St. John's met in a back-and-forth DCSAA championship game last season and the two teams appear to be on a collision course to do the same this year. The two top seeds, from the Independent School League and WCAC, respectively, will be heavy favorites in every game leading into the final. But there are some pesky public school opponents that could pose issues. Wilson is coming off its first DCIAA title since 1993, although it might have to get through Friendship Collegiate to reach the semifinals at Verizon Center. With a long enough run, Friendship Collegiate star Kieche White could pass the 2,000 career points mark. Don't forget about Anacostia, either. Though the Indians had a disappointing showing in the DCIAA championship game earlier this week, two-time DCIAA player of the year Asisha Greene and sophomore Mya Moye are two of the city's best talents.
NUMBER CRUNCH: 27
Points scored by IDEA senior Kierell Green as the Timberwolves advanced to their second straight D.C. Public Charter School Athletic Association championship game with a 78-76 win over Cesar Chavez Thursday night. IDEA will face Friendship Collegiate, which defeated Thurgood Marshall in the semifinals, in the PCSAA championship game Saturday night at Trinity University.
- T.C. Williams sprinters Noah and Josephus Lyles are really fast and bolting towards the Rio Olympics.
- Deng Nhial and Wakefield are back in the 5A North region final after a win over Potomac Falls Thursday night.
- Edison’s Jada Graves leads the Eagles past Tuscarora and into the Virginia 5A North girls’ basketball region final.
- Check out our region-by-region breakdown of the Maryland state boys’ basketball tournament, which begins tonight.
- Here’s a region-by-region preview of the Maryland state girls’ basketball tournament, which also begins tonight.
- Here’s a look at how the Virginia 6A North and 6A South boys’ basketball semifinals are shaping up.
- Maret’s Luka Garza is keeping the family basketball tradition going.
PHOTOS OF THE DAY
Here's a pictorial look at Wakefield's 5A North semifinal win …
VIDEO OF THE DAY
Want a closer look at just how the Lyles brothers came to be so fast? Check out this video.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: NVSHL and MSHL finals in ice hockey, 7 p.m.
It's a busy weekend of track and field championships and basketball playoff games around the Washington area, but Friday night the action on the ice will take center stage. Churchill and Annapolis/Old Mill will face off in the MSHL finals in Laurel and The Post's Eric Goldwein (@EricGoldweinWP) will be there chronicling the action on Twitter. Down at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Arlington, Stone Bridge and Woodbridge will battle it out for the NVSHL title. The Post's Dillon Mullan (@DillonMullan) is your man for updates on Twitter.