Archive for September, 2011

Friday football finals, week 7

Here are tonight’s final scores from around the Advoplex:

  • Bell County 47, Casey County 0
  • Garrard County 57, Powell County 27
  • Lexington Catholic 20, Boyle County 13
  • Lincoln County 54, Madison Southern 24
  • Mercer County 40, Nelson County 28

And here are next week’s area games (all games Friday, Oct. 7):

  • Garrard County at Bourbon County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Wayne County at Casey County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Marion County at Mercer County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Danville at Somerset, 7:30 p.m.
  • Lincoln County at South Laurel, 7:30 p.m.

A reminder: the Boyle County-at-Hancock County (Tenn.) game that appears on some schedules has been canceled.

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Friday football digest, week 7

I was in the press box last night at the Boyle County-Lexington Catholic soccer game, listening to some students who were part of Boyle’s online broadcast discussing tonight’s football game between the same two schools. I don’t recall their exact words, but their comments were pretty close to this:

“It’s a huge, huge rivalry,” one young announcer said.

“Lexington Catholic is (Boyle’s) biggest rival. It’s bigger than Danville,” his partner added.

Putting aside the average 16-year-old’s tendency toward hyperbole and lack of historical perspective, it raised an interesting question: Are they right?

Right or wrong, you didn’t have to spend long on the Boyle campus this week to realize that tonight’s game at Rebel Stadium is the talk of the school, and you don’t even need to be there to know that this is the Rebels’ most important biggest regular-season game.

LexCath and Boyle have developed a pretty intense rivalry through the course of 16 games in 14 years. Their first meeting back in 1997 went to overtime, and it’s been on ever since. And the fire has only been stoked by the fact that these two teams have met in both the regular season and the postseason in each of the last four years. Boyle has won the last six meetings over three years, and the Rebels lead the series 11-5.

Tonight’s District 4A-5 game is critically important for both teams, even though almost everyone who knows agrees that that will once again be only the first of two meetings. And tonight’s game finds the Rebels matched up against a team that has played really, really well in the first half of the season.

LexCath has acquitted itself well against a big-boy schedule with wins at Bell County and Lafayette and at home against Male, as well as a shootout loss to the same John Hardin team that gave Boyle a shutout loss. The Knights are still susceptible to giving up some points as they were last year, but Boyle will probably be better off if tonight’s game doesn’t turn into a track meet.

As I said during our online chat Thursday, I would have picked Boyle to win this game as recently as two or three weeks ago, but now I just can’t. The Rebels still have problems that need to be fixed, and an easy win over an inferior Taylor County team last week proved little. The Knights have their weaknesses, too, and their big win over Mercer County last week didn’t prove much, either. It might be a different story in mid-November, but LexCath looks a little better on the last day of September.

Not to be ignored is the District 3A-5 clash between Garrard County and Powell County in Lancaster. The Golden Lions could really build a head of steam with a home win over the undefeated Pirates, as well as move into the driver’s seat in their district.

Lincoln County has a good shot at a second straight district win in 5A-7 against Madison Southern, Casey County faces a road test like few others in a 3A-4 game at Bell County, and Mercer plays at winless Nelson County in a non-district game that could go either way.

And while you’re wondering what effect the outcome of the LexCath-Boyle game will have on the postseason, keep an eye out for the result of the Russell County-Rockcastle County game in Mount Vernon. It’s a battle of unbeaten teams who will likely finish 1-2 in District 4A-6, which is in the same region as Boyle’s district.

The predictions:

  • Bell County over Casey County.
  • Garrard County over Powell County.
  • Lexington Catholic over Boyle County.
  • Lincoln County over Madison Southern.
  • Mercer County over Nelson County.

Last week: 5-1; season 26-4 (.867).

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Checking football, soccer stats leaders

The KHSAA releases statistical leaders in football, boys soccer and girls soccer each Thursday through their regular season. Here’s a look at where some Advocate-area athletes and teams were ranked in the reports released today:

Football

  • Alex Bolin of Casey County is tied for 11th in rushing yards per game (170).
  • Tyler McCoy of Garrard County is tied for 11th in receiving yards per game (82).

Boys Soccer

  • Mercer County is tied for 10th in team defense (1.0 goals allowed per game) and is 12th in scoring margin (2.6 goals per game).

Girls Soccer

  • Samantha Sandidge of Danville is eighth in goals (25).
  • Boyle County is first in team defense (0.3 goals allowed per game), second in scoring margin (4.5 goals per game) and tied for sixth in scoring (4.8 goals per game).
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Regional golf tourneys teeing off

We’re only eight weeks into a new school sports year, the first fall postseason events are upon us with the arrival of regional golf tournaments today and Wednesday.

All six Advocate-area boys teams are playing in the 4th Region Tournament today at Danville Country Club. Drew Moore of Garrard County and J.B. Williams of Danville qualified for the state tournament from this region last year at The Pines at Lindsey Wilson. Williams was the individual runner-up.

The Boyle County and Mercer County girls are playing in the 7th Region Tournament today at Connemara. Rachel Pingleton of Boyle earned a state berth from this region last year at Juniper Hills.

The Casey County, Garrard County and Lincoln County girls play in the 9th Region Tournament on Wednesday at General Burnside Island State Park. There were no state qualifiers from those three teams last year.

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Friday football finals, week 6

Here are tonight’s final scores from around the Advoplex:

  • Boyle County 57, Taylor County 0
  • Casey County 41, McCreary Central 14
  • Danville 17, Green County 7
  • Garrard County 37, Bath County 8
  • Lexington Catholic 48, Mercer County 7
  • Lincoln County 49, Pulaski County 41

And here are next week’s area games (all games Friday, Sept. 30):

  • Lexington Catholic at Boyle County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Powell County at Garrard County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Lincoln County at Madison Southern, 7:30 p.m.
  • Mercer County at Nelson County, 7:30 p.m.
  • Casey County at Bell County, 8 p.m.
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Friday football digest, week 6

We’re told every year that the start of district play is what really matters in the regular season, and that day has arrived for almost all of the local teams. But while the five district games on tap for tonight are important, they really aren’t all that glamorous.

Not one of them jumps off the page as a must-see game, even though they might be must-win games. McCreary Central at Casey County (3A-4), Bath County at Garrard County (3A-5) and Boyle County at Taylor County (4A-5) look like easy victories for the Advocate-area teams, while the locals look to be clear underdogs in Mercer County at Lexington Catholic (4A-5) and Lincoln County at Pulaski County (5A-7).

The game that is clearly the most compelling on this week’s schedule is the lone non-district game between Danville and Green County at Admiral Stadium. The two teams will meet tonight for the fourth consecutive year, but the past three meetings have been in the second round of the Class 2A playoffs, with Green eliminating the Admirals in 2008 and ’09 and Danville felling the Dragons in 2010.

The first and third games were close, but the one that stands out is Green’s 61-22 victory in 2009 at Greensburg. It was the first (and still only) time Danville has lost a running-clock game, a nugget that was not forgotten by coach Sam Harp and the Admirals in their rematch last year and that will certainly be brought up again before the game tonight.

The most recent realignment means the teams probably won’t cross paths in the playoffs for at least the next four years — the only possible meeting would be in the state finals — so Harp and Green coach Mike Griffiths decided to move their series to the regular season.

It’s a good matchup between good teams — Danville is ranked No. 4 in Class 2A; Green is No. 9 — and one that could go either way. The Admirals will be at significantly less than 100 percent for the second straight week, and they’ll have their hands full with Green’s size and speed. On the other hand, they’ll also surely have the words of their coach reminding them of that 2009 game, and many of them will have their own memories of that night in Greensburg.

The predictions, coming off a week in which I tripled my loss total:

  • Boyle County over Taylor County.
  • Casey County over McCreary Central.
  • Danville over Green County.
  • Garrard County over Bath County.
  • Lexington Catholic over Mercer County.
  • Pulaski County over Lincoln County.

Last week: 3-2; season 21-3 (.875).

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Lincoln field to be named for former coach Leedy

I never saw Bill Ed Leedy coach a football game, but I have no doubt that he deserves more than anyone to have the field at Lincoln County named in his honor, and that will happen tonight during a ceremony at Lincoln’s game against Pulaski County.

Leedy was the last coach at Stanford and the first coach at Lincoln when the county’s schools consolidated in 1974, and he coached the two schools for a combined 14 years. Decades after his retirement, he still has a presence within the Lincoln athletic community as the clock operator at basketball games and as one of the biggest fans of all Patriot teams.

Congratulations to Leedy and his family — including his daughter, Interior Journal sports writer Nancy Leedy — on an honor that they and all Lincoln fans can be proud of.

Click here to read Larry Vaught’s column in Thursday’s Advocate on Leedy’s honor.

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KHSAA delegates vote to tweak spring sports seasons

There didn’t seem to be any top-of-the-page headliners among the proposals voted on by the KHSAA Delegate Assembly, which consists of athletic representatives from the member schools, at its annual meeting Thursday. All 12 proposals submitted for votes passed easily, and roughly half of them dealt with minor changes to eligibility rules, including the transfer rule.

The most noticeable change in KHSAA by-laws might result from a proposal to start the baseball, softball and tennis seasons a few days earlier. Those changes were recommended to lessen the impact of revisions in school testing systems on those sports that might otherwise make it difficult in coming years for teams to play the permitted number of games or matches.

If the proposal approved by the delegates is also approved by the Kentucky Board of Education, which is likely, baseball, softball and tennis teams would be allowed to hold their first competitions on the same day as the start of the first state basketball tournament beginning in 2014, or 12 days earlier than currently allowed. The maximum number of contests allowed would not change.

Click here to read all of the proposals that were voted on and approved Thursday.

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Danville names boys basketball coach

Danville has named Rowan County assistant coach Andrew Zaheri as its new boys basketball coach, Hal Morris reports in the Advocate today.

Zaheri has been an assistant at Rowan for the past nine seasons, including last year when the Vikings reached the finals of the Boys Sweet Sixteen.

He replaces Matthew Yates, who resigned just before the school year began to take the job at Frankfort.

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Report: Ex-Casey coach taking over at Southwestern

(Updated 10:50 a.m. Wednesday with link to Somerset newspaper story.)

Former Casey County coach Andy Stephens has been named the interim coach at Southwestern following the sudden resignation of Dale Anderson, according to a report from WYMT-TV in Hazard.

WYMT sports anchor Derek Forrest reported on Twitter earlier this evening that Anderson, the only coach in Southwestern’s history, has resigned and that Stephens has been named interim head coach.

Steve Cornelius’ story from today’s edition of the Commonwealth Journal in Somerset has further details on Anderson’s resignation.

Stephens went 35-71 in 10 seasons at Casey before resigning earlier this year and later taking a job on Anderson’s staff at Southwestern. His 2010 Casey team had the best season in school history with an 8-4 record and the school’s first postseason victory, and he was voted the Advocate’s Area Coach of the Year following the season.

Anderson was 108-98 in 19 years at Southwestern. The Warriors lost 47-46 to Danville on Friday in his final game.

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