Greenville's BI-LO Center probably seemed a thousand miles away to three of the four local boys' basketball teams left in the Upper State playoffs.
But with each game, the distance to the championship game is getting shorter, and making the trip this weekend is one step away.
Would anyone have picked Indian Land, Lancaster and York to get so close to playing for Upper State championships when the 2010-2011 season began in late November?
The fourth team, Great Falls, is almost a lock to make it each year but must beat an old nemesis to get there.
In tonight's games, Great Falls (22-3) plays Calhoun County at Blythewood High School in Class A; York (18-6) is home against Southside (18-8) in Class AAA; and Lancaster (19-7) is on the road against Dorman (21-6) in Class AAAA.
Indian Land (21-8) hosts Eau Claire (19-7) on Wednesday in Class AA.
All four are among the elite eight in their divisions, a spot unfamiliar to all but Great Falls.
Among the four teams, Great Falls is the one with a strong tradition.
John Smith has been head coach since 1969 and is the winningest boys coach in state history with 863.
He has led the Red Devils to six state championships in 15 trips, including last year's loss to Hemingway.
According to Palmetto's Finest, the record book for the South Carolina High School League, York has never played for a state championship in basketball.
But this year's team, coached by Kendall McCarter, has the talent to get there, led by guard Jerry Holmes.
The Cougars got a gift of sorts in the second round from Southside.
While the Cougars were racing past Greer, Southside put the finishing touches on a victory over Daniel, giving York a home game tonight.
If Daniel had won, the Cougars would have been on the road.
Southside won Class AA state titles in 2008 and 2009 and moved to Class AAA this season.
Coach Ricardo Priester's Lancaster team mirrors York with its talented lineup of athletic players.
The Bruins are tall and fast and can put up points in bunches.
The team is led by Sindarius Thornwell, a 6-4, guard-forward regarded as one of the top sophomores in the state, and Ron Trapps, a 6-3 senior guard.
Indian Land's Warriors moved up from Class A to Class AA this season and have taken their new division by storm.
The Warriors were 9-2 in football and finished second in the region to state champ Central of Pageland. They won the region basketball championship at 10-0.
Coached by Nate Smith, the team will run the floor and put up the first shot available. Junior guard Terrell Rogers is averaging 29.7 points.
The Warriors are averaging 87 points in the playoffs. Eau Claire, a seven-time state champ, is averaging 62.5.
In the first round, Rogers and sophomore Hayden Sawyer each scored 31 points.
In the second round, Rogers had 35, and Sawyer had 20.