Prep Baseball Report

NCHSAA 3A Regional Finals Preview

Brandon Hall
NC / Mid-ATL Director of Scouting

The NCHSAA Tournament has entered its Regional Final stage.  There are 4 teams at each classification that can taste the championship dog pile.  Below we breakdown the 3A Regional Finals with a look at each club and our scout's thoughts on what could be coming this week.

NCHSAA 3A Regional Final Previews


TUE 5/21 -- Tuscola at East Rowan
THUR 5/23 -- East Rowan at Tuscola
SAT 5/25 -- Tuscola at East Rowan (if needed)


No. 1 Seed - East Rowan

The Mustangs are used to making runs through May.  This is expected from the time that fall workouts begin.  While the fire power at the front of the rotation is not what they have had in years past, there is tremendous balance in the offense and the Mustangs have played solid defense since February.  To advance, they just need to do what they have been doing, scoring more runs than their opponent, either by slugging or filling up the zone and catching the baseball at a high level.

Path to the Regional Final
+ West Mecklenburg - 11-0
+ St Stephens - 9-3
+ Central Davidson - 9-0
+ Oak Grove - 12-2

No. 10 Seed - Tuscola

At times, teams that are up the mountain do not get the love they deserve.  The far west area of the West Region has been very strong in past years, with two state champions in 2023.  Tuscola has played well, but this is far from a true Cinderella run.  The Mountaineers finished 2nd, by one game, in the Mountain Seven 3A with West Henderson.  They have talent and they have age.  The past two games they have faced a couple of the top arms in Noth Carolina. I doubt Tuscola is rattled entering Rowan County and they will present some issues for East Rowan to deal with throughout the series.

Path to the Regional Final
+ Stewart Cramer - 11-1
+ Rockingham County - 4-2
+ West Henderson - 7-2
+ North Davidson - 6-4

West Region Bracket


TUE 5/21 -- South Central at Terry Sanford
THUR 5/23 -- Terry Sanford at South Central
SAT 5/25 -- South Central at Terry Sanford (if needed)


No. 4 Seed - Terry Sanford

The Bulldogs were slotted fairly high in the initial Power 25 rankings for 2024.  Losing their first 3 games, and struggling to create offense dropped them out of the rankings.  Over the next several weeks, the schedule got easier, as two of those losses were to other Power 25 teams.  Ripping off 13 wins in their 14 games put the Bulldogs on the radar and set them up for this late run.  Of their 5 losses, 3 are to teams that were in the Power 25 at the time of the game.  The one thing the adversity has set is the Bulldogs can win in a variety of ways.

Path to the Regional Final
+ Havelock - 4-2
+ Williams - 19-3
+ Orange - 4-0
+ Lee County - 9-8 (8)

No. 14 Seed - South Central 

The eastern side of the state, especially the pocket of schools in and around Greenville, NC have traditionally been good areas for high school baseball.  That area can be tough for our scouts to get to at times and we rely on information from coaches, who in that area, can be tight lipped, not wanting to give away any advantage.  We have slept on South Central and they have made this run, waking us up.  At 22-4, the Falcons have bludgened some of their opponents.  Their only losses on the year are to 3 teams in the Prep Baseball Power 25.  While they only have 1 Power 25 win, they have smashed some teams that were on the verge of making the list.  Watch out if this offense gets it rolling this week.

Path to the Regional Final
+ Person - 4-0
+ Cape Fear - 3-2
+ Currituck County - 6-2
+ Croatan - 10-0

East Region Bracket



Below is what our team of scouts wrote prior to the tournament.  We have underlined areas where they were on to something and crossed out areas that were way off.  See how they did.

Brandon Hall, NC/Mid-ATL Scouting Director:

This is an interesting bracket as I do not think there is a ton of seperation between top seeds and lower seeds.  The biggest thing has been consistency through the year.   Teams that have really challenged themselves with their schedule could see a couple of regular season losses really pay off in the post season.  Keep an eye on #24 Carson, who always tend to play well late.  #21 Oak Grove made an unexpected run last year and knows how to navigate the bracket. They are matched up with No. 12 East Lincoln who can score runs. Look out for the winner of that 1st round matchup.  Also Ledford at No. 11.  Their pitching needs to hold up, but they are a club that can score on anyone that is on the bump.   

Patrick Johnson, NC Asst Scouting Director:

West Bracket is for grabs as any team can win any night. Most teams have that top arm to control a game but lack of depth on the mound will be the deciding factor in who takes control. Look for Hibriten to make it a tough game in the first round against AC Reynolds. If Ledford and Fred T. Foard can pull off first round wins, the winner of the second round match up could make a deep run to the Finals. 

Zach Boraski, NC Asst Scouting Director:

This is a challenging bracket as the field of 32 alot will depend on matchups. I like Ledford not many lineups are as deep espically in 3A. They will have the ability to put on runs on high end arms. Tuscola has had a really good season, playing some good competition. A couple extra innings can only help, building on the experience and in playoff baseball experience is key.


Brandon Hall:

No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 21 Oak Grove
No. 2 West Henderson vs. No. 3 North Davidson

Region Championship 
No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 2 West Henderson

Region Champion
No. 2 West Henderson

Patrick Johnson

No. 2 West Henderson vs. No. 6 Fred T. Foard
No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 4 South Point

Region Championship
No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 2 West Henderson

Region Champion
No. 1 East Rowan

Zach Boraski:

No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 4 South Pointe

No. 2 West Henderson vs. No. 3 North Davidson

Region Championship 
No. 1 East Rowan vs. No. 2 West Henderson

Region Champion
No. 1 East Rowan


From our team of scouts, a look at the bracket to see if any teams outside the Top 10 seeds could make a run.

Brandon Hall, NC/Mid-ATL Scouting Director:

No. 16 First Flight has a true ace in Isaac Miles.  Do they hold him for a potential round 2 matchup with JH Rose? Williams is getting healthy on the bump and could see their late season surge continue in the tournament.

The bottom half of the East Region is wide open... Throw away all the seeds... Most of these games from round 1 on could go in any direction.

Patrick Johnson, NC Asst Scouting Director:

No. 15 CB Aycock could be the team in the east that surprises everyone makes a deep run. No. 16 First Flight is a team that has showed flashes of brilliance throughout the year and can beat anyone on any give day. 

Zach Boraski, NC Asst Scouting Director:

The East has a bunch of diverse teams who will be tough outs for everyone. I think First Flight is the true cinderella story if the pitching matchups can work out for them. They can mix and match enough to make each game incredible tough for opponets.  I think Harnett Central may also be able to win a few games. A gritty group who is learning how to win at the right time. South Central is also hot and battled tested with the split conference playing some of the top teams in 4A.


Brandon Hall -- East Rowan in 3 and Terry Sanford in 3 with game 3 going 15 innings.

Patrick Johnson -- East Rowan in 2 and South Central in 2

Zach Boraski -- East Rowan in 2 and South Central in 3