Archive for August, 2008

Football schedule changes

If you have the schedules that appeared in the Advocate on the same day as our prep football preview, or some of the other schedules distributed around our coverage area, you need to know of a few changes and corrections:

  • Casey County: The Rebels’ season opener against Trimble County in Henry County’s bowl is Saturday night, not tonight.
  • Garrard County: The school has announced that its Sept. 12 game against Jackson County has been moved to Lancaster because Jackson’s field is still under construction. The school began football in 2006 and began building its field this spring. This could also affect Jackson’s game against Casey on Sept. 26, which is also scheduled to be played in McKee, but there’s no word on that yet.
  • Lincoln County: The Patriots will play Tates Creek in the Governor’s Bowl Sept. 6 at Woodford County. The date and time (5:30 p.m.) are unchanged, but the opponents changed after the schedule was originally set. Woodford will now play Bardstown. In addition, the schedule in weeks 3-5 was listed incorrectly on our flyer thanks to a typo by yours truly. Lincoln is open on Sept. 19, plays at Southwestern on Sept. 26 and host Rockcastle County on Oct. 3.

The corrected schedules are listed on the Advocate’s prep football page, along with directions to road games.

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Game day, better late than never

Football season could have started two weeks ago and should have started one week ago, but at least it’s finally here. Unless I’m getting forgetful, It’s the latest opening day in at least 20 years. But on the plus side, it is a tad cooler than it was at the start of last season, when some games were delayed due to high heat indices. Still not cool enough, just cooler.

* * *

After a “success” rate of 72.3 percent last season, I’m going to take another run at picking the winners of each week’s area games. There’s no mystery in the first week’s picks, as I’m sticking by the preseason predictions that appeared in print last week (see story, chart) until each team develops a body of work or its circumstances change.

So the Week 1 picks are:

  • Bell County over Garrard County
  • Lincoln County over Washington County
  • Madison Central over Mercer County (Sat.)
  • Boyle County over Warren Central (Sat.)
  • Danville over Russell County (Sat.)
  • Trimble County over Casey County (Sat.)

See you tonight at the Death Valley Bowl and tomorrow at the Bob Allen Pigskin Classic.

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Counting down to kickoff

We’re over 24 hours from a new football season, and each of the six local teams has its own reasons to look ahead with enthusiasm. Two of those teams — Garrard County and Lincoln County — will kick off their seasons Friday night in the Death Valley Bowl, while Boyle County, Casey County, Danville and Mercer County open Saturday in various bowls.

Looking own the road, we still have to live with the cumbersome six-class system introduced last year, but at least some sanity has returned to the postseason with the elimination of the much-loathed intradistrict games in the first two rounds of the playoffs.

But for now, most teams are simply hoping to start the season in a better fashion than last year, when Garrard County Mercer County was the only one of the six squads to win its first game. And we’re all hoping the heat index is much more manageable than it was on last year’s kickoff weekend.

Before you go to the games, here are some other places you can go to get ready for the season:

Now for some out-of-town links specific to the Week 1 matchups:

  • Bell County-Garrard County: No game or team preview is available yet, but here’s a feature on highly recruited Bell kicker Monte Merrick from the Middlesboro Daily News.
  • Washington County-Lincoln County: Something of a preview from The Springfield Sun, though it focuses mostly on Washington’s scrimmage last week.
  • Boyle County-Warren Central: A story from the Daily News of Bowling Green on Warren Central running back Tabarus Mitchell.
  • Russell County-Danville: A Russell team preview from The Times Journal of Russell Springs.
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Remembering Tom Hurt

I bid a sad farewell to Tom Hurt, who was a fixture on the local high school sports scene for decades before I came to know him as the crack statistician for football and basketball teams at Garrard County and later at Lincoln County. Hurt died on Saturday, fittingly while working over another set of stats.

I relied on Hurt’s numbers for countless game stories for the Advocate, and I quickly realized just how much he enjoyed charting those numbers and everything they led to, from the nuts and bolts of another forgettable game to the ingredients of a catalog of records the likes of which most schools will never have.

Hurt’s passion for sports — as well as that for his family — was on display at Hurt’s visitation earlier tonight at the Lincoln gym. And I cannot say much more about the man that wasn’t better said in Larry Vaught’s column on Hurt in today’s newspaper. Please read that column here, and Hurt’s obituary can be found here.

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Golfing with Garrard

The boys golf regional for area teams will be at Dix River Country Club in Stanford for the second straight year, and Garrard County, one of the club’s home teams, is making sure that its rivals have a chance to play 18 holes on the regional track — and perhaps making a little money, too.

Garrard will host a 20-team tournament Saturday that will include at least 17 teams from within the 5th Region. Local schools Boyle County, Danville and Mercer County are scheduled to play in the tournament, which begins with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. Some of the region’s other top teams from outside this area that are scheduled to play include Adair County, Anderson County and Mercer County.

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Boyle girls soccer team ranked

Soccer season begins with one area team ranked among the state’s best. The Boyle County girls are No. 20 in the preseason coaches’ poll, while Danville also received votes but was not ranked. Both teams open the season tonight: Boyle hosts Taylor County and Danville plays Lafayette at Paul Dunbar.

No boys preseason poll was released. Update: The preseason boys poll includes no local teams.

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State football finals set

Make your travel plans now, because the KHSAA has set the schedule for this year’ state football finals. It’s basically the same as last year, except the starting times have been moved up 30 minutes.

Friday, Dec. 12

  • Class 1A, 11 a.m.
  • Class 3A, 3 p.m.
  • Class 5A, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 13

  • Class 2A, 11 a.m.
  • Class 4A, 3 p.m.
  • Class 6A, 7 p.m.

The 11-week regular season begins Aug. 29 and ends Nov. 7, and the first four rounds of the playoffs are Nov. 14, 21 and 28 and Dec. 5.

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Roll call of new coaches

Every time a new school sports year begins, there are always a number of teams under new management. Here’s a nearly complete list of the new coaches at local schools:

  • Boyle County: Steve Adams, boys basketball; Larry French, football; Cate Guthrie, volleyball; Alex Jarman, boys golf.
  • Burgin: Jacqueline Coleman, girls basketball.
  • Casey County: Neal King, baseball.
  • Garrard County: Scott Bolin, girls basketball; Michael Gaffney, boys soccer; Ed Rall, baseball; Mark Scenters, football.
  • Lincoln County: Erika Cole, girls soccer; David Ledford, boys golf; Cassandra McWhorter, girls golf; Wendy Peters, boys soccer; Mike Settles, football. (The baseball and softball positions are currently vacant.)
  • Mercer County: Todd Davis, athletic director; Lynn Flach, volleyball; Dianna Richmond, girls golf.
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