The N.C. High School Athletic Association basketball playoffs are in the Sweet 16 in each class and nine Mecklenburg County teams on Saturday will try to punch their tickets to the Elite 8 round:
▪ At Butler, the Sweet 16 No. 1 Bulldogs (28-0) will play Southwestern 4A conference rival Rocky River for the fourth time this season. Butler beat Rocky River 79-56 in December, 75-58 in January and 73-68 in the Southwestern 4A conference tournament this month. Rocky River (18-10) has won four of its past five games, making a surprising postseason run.
▪ No. 2 North Mecklenburg (24-3) travels to West Forsyth (26-2). The Vikings have won 11 straight and are trying to move toward a second straight N.C. 4A Western Regional championship, or state semifinal berth. North Meck lost to eventual state champion Charlotte Catholic in the regional final in 2016. West Forsyth has won 14 straight and has lost once at home all season.
▪ In Huntersville, Lake Norman Charter (21-7) is in the Sweet 16 for the fifth straight year. The Knights have won seven straight and will play host to Shelby in a 2A third-round game. Shelby (23-5) is led by guard Quay Kimble.
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▪ In 1A, Community School of Davidson (21-8) will play at Winston-Salem Prep (24-3), which has won four state championships, including in 2015.
▪ On the girls’ side, four Mecklenburg 4A teams are still alive. They all play Saturday. Sweet 16 No. 1 Mallard Creek (27-0) will play No. 8 Rocky River at home. The Ravens have won six in a row. At Ardey Kell, the Knights (23-6), ranked No. 7, will face 10 Hough (23-5).