No matter what happens the rest of the way in the 5A North Region girls and boys basketball tournaments, the Wakefield Warriors high school teams have already clinched state tournament berths.
Each did so Feb. 21 with second-round victories to advance the region semifinals. The four semifinalists move on to the state tournament.
In those wins, the Capitol Conference champion Wakefield boys (21-4, winners of six in a row) rallied to defeat North Stafford, 59-56, in Arlington; and the girls (23-4) improved to 2-0 in the region by routing host Mountain View, 79-53.
The teams play region semifinal games Feb. 23 on the road – the boys at Albemarle in Charlottesville and the girls at Tuscarora in Leesburg.
For the Wakefield girls, the region semifinal and state berths are their first in program history. The 23 wins are a single-season best.
In the win over Mountain View, the Wakefield girls led 16-6 at the end of the first quarter and 39-21 at halftime. Lyrin Hatcher had 24 points, Summer Matlack 16, Jami Tham 14 and Hailey Finlay nine.
Wakefield downed visiting Orange County, 55-31, a night earlier at Wakefield. Hatcher scored 17, Matlack 16 with three three-pointers, and Tham had eight points. Wakefield led 17-2 at the end of the first quarter.
Wakefield lost in the second round of the region tournament the past two seasons.
Entering the region semifinals, Wakefield has won six of its last seven games.
The Wakefield boys received a first-round region bye, then played North Stafford and trailed by three-points, 42-39, in the fourth quarter against the tall team.
Chris Warner had 16 points for Wakefield, Amari Cooper 15, Halil Parks 12 and Alan Treakle seven.