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Late rally lifts Cards to state semis

Landrum point guard DeShaun Hall led the late-game charge with 12 points in the final quarter, finishing with 21 on the night. All-state center Alex Wilson and Jake McClure each had 15.

The Blue Devils (16-12) led by seven after the first quarter, when they hit 5 of 8 three-pointers, but made only one of their next 14 attempts from deep.

Landrum (25-1) trailed by two at the outset of the fourth quarter, but its tough defense and fast-paced offense eventually wore down the Blue Devils.

So the stage is set for the four remaining teams in the pursuit for this season&squo;s S.C. men&squo;s 1A basketball championship. It&squo;s a pretty big stage.

The Bi-Lo Center in Greenville, which&bsp; holds up to 15,000 spectators, will host the Upper State championship matchup on Saturday afternoon between the Cardinals and the Red Devils of Great Falls High School.

It&squo;s a familiar position for the Red Devils (22-1), a perennial powerhouse amongst the 1A ranks. They hold the record for most appearances in the state finals with 15, five of which ended in S.C. titles.

But the Cardinals are in the midst of arguably the best season in school history. They have won 25 games, a school record, with their sole defeat coming at the hands of a 4A opponent. It will be Landrum&squo;s first trip to the Upper State finals since 1984.

Saturday&squo;s game starts at 12:45 p.m. Advance tickets are available from the school at a discount rate.

The winner will take on either Calhoun County (24-1) or Hemingway (27-2) in the state finals, which are set for next Saturday in Columbia.