The sectional brackets for the IHSAA girls state basketball tournament are set by a blind draw. That's the only way a matchup like this can occur in the Tuesday quarterfinal at Lewis Cass instead of a championship on Saturday.
Pioneer and Rochester will play in tonight's lone game quarterfinal.
Pioneer (19-4), ranked tenth in the final 2A poll, is in the Lewis Cass sectional thanks to the tradition factor. The Panthers were bumped up a class after consecutive appearances in the 1A state title game including last year's championship win over Loogootee.
The Zebras (16-7) are the two-time defending sectional champs and have overcome numerous injuries to put together a third consecutive winning season for head coach Brian Jennings.
Rochester's defense gave up less than 40 points per game. Coach Jennings says they will depend upon that for another postseason run.
More specifically, Rochester anxious to see how senior Kamrynn Burkett can go folowing her leg injury. Back in the lineup, the Zebras were trying to get Burkett prepared in final regular season outings to help slow down Pioneer's junior Ashlynn Brooke (25.5 ppg) and senior Hailey Cripe (19.7 ppg).
The winner will play Wabash (9-13) in a Friday semifinal.
GIANT fm Sports pregame coverage is at 5:40 pm. Tip is at 6:00 pm tonight on 92.1, giant.fm and the GIANT fm app.
At the 1A North White sectional, Caston will open postseason play with a team the Comets beat a couple of weeks ago.
Caston (16-6), #13 in the final 1A poll, will play Frontier (9-12).
Head coach Josh Douglass says they won't take anything for granted despite a 59-30 win over Frontier on January 14.
The winner will play Tri-County (10-9) on Friday.
At the 3A Northwood site, the home team will look for revenge against Tippecanoe Valley (15-7).
The Vikings got by Northwood (3-21) on January 11, 46-33. Tippecanoe Valley head coach Chris Kindig says it wasn't easy.
Kindig says he hopes for a better start than the Vikings have had in recent games.