The defending Division III state champion Africentric Early College girls basketball team is heading to the state tournament for the fourth consecutive year after defeating Findlay Liberty-Benton 56-36 in a regional final March 9 at Lexington.

Jordan Horston had 16 points and Arianna Smith scored 10 to lead the Nubians, who improved to 26-0 and advanced to face Berlin Hiland (26-2) in a state semifinal at 1 p.m. March 14 at Ohio State.

Waynesville (26-0) and Doylestown Chippewa (26-1) will meet in the other semifinal. The state final is set for 10:45 a.m. March 16 at Ohio State.

Alexia Smith and Sakima Walker added eight and seven points, respectively, for Africentric, which led only 13-10 after the first quarter before stretching its lead to 29-13 by halftime and 45-23 by the end of the third quarter.

Liberty-Benton finished 25-2.

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