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LARGO, Md. – The Prince George's men's basketball team begins its quest for its fourth consecutive and seventh overall National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region XX Division III Basketball Championship at the MC-Rockville Gymnasium on the campus of Montgomery College on Saturday at 7 p.m. The Owls will face the winner of No. 3 Westmoreland County and No. 6 Butler County contest that takes place on Friday at 8 p.m.
General admission tickets are $5 per person while college students with a valid ID and children under 12 will be admitted for free. Fan unable to attend the contest can follow @pgccowls on Twitter for live updates throughout the tournament.
On the other side of the bracket, fourth-seed CCAC-Alleghany (16-5) battles fifth-seed Penn Highlands (16-5) in the quarterfinals on Friday at 6 p.m. with the winner moving on to battle top-seed and host Montgomery College (18-9) in the semifinals on Saturday at 5 p.m. The semifinal winners will square off in the championship game on Sunday at 4 p.m.
Prince George's (20-8) is led by freshman Mykal Johnson (Landover, Md.), who leads the team with 17.6 points and 3.2 rebounds per game. Fellow freshman Alex Morales (Patterson, N.J.) ranks second on the squad with 13.5 points and 10.1 rebounds per game while sophomore Jaylin Johnson (Detroit, Mich.) boasts 9.7 points and 2.9 rebounds per game and sophomore Kenneth Pettaway (Bowie, Md.) ranks fourth with 9.6 points and 3.9 rebounds per game.
Westmoreland County (13-12) is powered by sophomore Jordan Johnson, who is averaging 19.5 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. Freshman Daniel King ranks second on the squad with 18.4 points and 4.0 rebounds per game while Jalen Stevens (15.6 ppg.) and sophomore Joseph Griffin (12.4) are also averaging double figures for the year.
Butler County (9-19) boasts five players in double digits in points and are led by freshman LaJuan Hardy with 15.1 points and 3.0 rebounds per game. Jacolby Harris is second on the squad with 14.2 points and 2.8 rebounds per game while sophomores Johnnathan Lindsey (13.0 ppg.), Will Adler (11.2 ppg.) and Ken Perkins (10.4 ppg.) are also scoring at least 10 points a game.
Prince George's and Westmoreland were scheduled to face off on the hardwood on Dec. 17, but the contest was cancelled due to impending weather scheduled to hit the Youngwood, Pa., area. The Owls and Butler County did not play in 2016-17. If Butler County advances to the semifinals, it would mark the first meeting against Prince George's in the regional since the Owls downed the Grizzles 112-103 on Feb. 22, 2015.
Prince George's is coming off its fourth Maryland Junior College Tournament Championship on Sunday after winning a thrilling 63-62 decision against Baltimore City when Morales drained a jumper with six seconds left. The freshman finished with 20 points and 17 rebounds while Mykal Johnson registered 20 points off the bench in the winning effort. The Largo team also won the Maryland JUCO crown in 1971-72, 1979-80 and 1980-81.
The Owls are looking for their eighth Region XX title after winning the championship in 1990-91, 1992-93, 2007-08, 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2015-16.
Head coach Brian Johnson is in his first season in Largo and has guided Prince George's to its first 20-win campaign since the 2013-14 campaign.