Archive for November, 2012

Mercer boys hosting hoops showcase

Five 12th Region teams, including three from this area, will be featured this weekend in the inaugural Farmers National Bank 12th Region Showcase at Mercer County.

The showcase includes one game tonight and four games Saturday pitting the 12th Region teams against five teams from other regions. Some of the matchups are pretty interesting, and it should make for a good early-season event.

Here’s the schedule:

Friday

  • Bryan Station vs. Pulaski County, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday

  • Riverside Christian vs. Burgin, 2 p.m.
  • Woodford County vs. Boyle County, 3:45 p.m.
  • Western Hills vs. Mercer County, 5:30 p.m.
  • Central Hardin vs. West Jessamine, 7:15 p.m.
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Following the football finals

The state football finals will go on without any Advocate-area teams for the second straight year, so there probably isn’t a great deal of interest among casual fans in this audience in what will play out Friday and Saturday in Bowling Green.

But many of the football fans among you will be paying attention to the six games, which feature six of last year’s 12 finalists  (defending champions Central, Highlands, Bowling Green and Trinity, as well as Mayfield and Belfry) and four first-time finalists (Fairview, Collins, Cooper and Pleasure Ridge Park).

That could make for another weekend of one-sided games. Five of last year’s six games were decided by an average of 28.2 points, with Central’s one-point win over Belfry in the 3A final being the only close game. Central and Belfry will play for that title again in what again figures to be a close game, but if power ratings such as The Courier-Journal’s Litkenhous Ratings are to be believed, the only other game that looks like it might be a close one is the 2A game between Caldwell County and Newport Central Catholic.

If you want to keep tabs on the action, this KHSAA web page offers links to audio (live) and video (delayed by four hours) streams and live statistics from the games, as well as rosters and pregame stats for all 12 participating teams. In addition, all six games can be heard locally on Lexington-based WVLK-FM (101.5).

My picks for the weekend:

  • 1A: Mayfield over Fairview.
  • 3A: Central over Belfry.
  • 4A: Highlands over Collins.
  • 2A: Newport Central Catholic over Caldwell County.
  • 5A: Bowling Green over Cooper.
  • 6A: Trinity over Pleasure Ridge Park.

Last time: 2-0; season: 47-16 (.746).

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Running clock reminder

In case you missed it, the KHSAA adopted a running-clock rule for basketball blowouts last spring similar to the one used in football, and the rule is in effect this season.

The short version is that the running clock will kick in any time the margin reaches 35 points or more after halftime, with stoppages only for timeouts, injuries or instances in which there is blood on a player or on the court and for free throws. For the full details, click the link above.

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Basketball begins again

“Hoosiers” is playing on TV this morning, so it must be time to start another basketball season. The KHSAA season opens tonight with three girls games — Anderson County at Casey County, Somerset at Garrard County and Lincoln County at Pulaski County — and every area team will tip off sometime this week except the Danville boys, who open Dec. 4.

The season covers 12 weeks between now and Feb. 16, and the postseason begins Feb. 18 with the start of district tournament play.

Danville Christian, which plays outside the KHSAA, opened its season about 10 days ago. Here are the opening games for Advocate-area KHSAA teams:

  • Boyle County: boys, Saturday vs. Woodford County at Mercer County; girls, Friday at Southwestern.
  • Burgin: boys and girls, Tuesday vs. Lynn Camp.
  • Casey County: boys, Thursday vs. Burgin; girls, tonight vs. Anderson County.
  • Danville: boys, Dec. 4 vs. West Jessamine; girls, Tuesday vs. Lafayette.
  • Garrard County: boys, Tuesday at Grant County; girls, tonight vs. Somerset.
  • Kentucky School for the Deaf: boys and girls, Tuesday at St. Francis.
  • Lincoln County: boys, Tuesday at Russell County; girls, tonight at Pulaski County.
  • Mercer County: boys, Tuesday vs. Marion County; girls, Thursday at Sacred Heart.

“Now boys, don’t get caught watching the paint dry.”

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Alcorn, Bolin receive district player of the year awards

Running backs Devonta Alcorn of Danville and Alex Bolin of Casey County have been named the players of the year in their respective districts by the Kentucky Football Coaches Association.

Alcorn and Bolin, the only two Advocate-area honorees among the KFCA player and coach of the year award winners, will receive their awards this weekend at the state finals in Bowling Green.

Here are the winners for each district that includes area teams, with the player of the year listed first, then the coach of the year:

  • District 2A-7: Devonta Alcorn, Danville; Ray Graham, Lexington Christian.
  • District 3A-4: Alex Bolin, Casey County, Shawn Thompson, Wayne County.
  • District 3A-5: Kentayvous Hopkins, Bourbon County; Reed Fields, Bath County.
  • District 4A-5: Kyle Bolin, Lexington Catholic; Bill Letton, Lexington Catholic.
  • District 5A-7: Damien Harris, Madison Southern; Jonathan Clark, Madison Southern.

 

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Garrard girls basketball coach on the mend

The Garrard County girls basketball team could open the season without coach Scott Bolin, who is on the mend after undergoing an emergency appendectomy Wednesday.

“Went to the doctor yesterday and was immediately admitted to the hospital for appendicitis surgery. Less than two hours after walking into the doctors office the appendix was out and I was in my room to recover. Looking forward to being released and getting back home! Very thankful for the nurses, doctors and family that have taken care of me and the many friends and family offering up prayers and support!” Bolin wrote Thursday on his Facebook page.

The surgery went well, and Bolin is recuperating at home. The Lady Lions open their season Monday at home against Somerset.

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New winter sports coaches

Football season moves on without us tonight, as there are no Advocate-area teams among the 24 teams playing in semifinal games across Kentucky. So it’s full speed ahead into the winter sports season in the Advoplex.

A new basketball season opens Monday, swimming season is just getting started and wrestling season is getting under way as well.

The most recent coaching change came earlier this week at Burgin, where girls basketball coach Chris Myers resigned and former assistant coach Ray Daniels, a longtime friend of Myers, was named to replace him. Here’s a look at all the new winter sports coaches at the eight area schools:

  • Burgin: Brian Kirk, boys basketball; Ray Daniels, girls basketball.
  • Garrard County: Dennis Pardue, boys basketball.
  • Kentucky School for the Deaf: Lisa Morse, girls basketball.

 

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Friday football finals, week 14

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

  • Class 2A, Region 4: Somerset 31, Danville
  • Class 4A, Region 3: Lexington Catholic 27, Boyle County 16

Football season has ended early in the Advoplex. This is the first time since 2007 that no local team has reached the semifinal round.

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Friday football digest, week 14

It’s regional finals week, but it might as well be called second-chance week in Danville.

The only two Advocate-area teams still alive in the state football playoffs will be playing in long-anticipated rematches tonight with regional championships on the line. And for all the talk about taking it one game at a time, these are the games that Boyle County and Danville have been working toward ever since they lost to Lexington Catholic and Somerset.

Both the Rebels and Admirals hit the road tonight for those rematches — Boyle at Lexington Catholic in the Class 4A, Region 3 final, and Danville at Somerset in the Class 2A, Region 4 final — and both will be trying to do what they could not do in their first district games.(Follow these links for a refresher course on Lexington Catholic’s 24-21 win over Boyle on Sept. 28 and Somerset’s 24-7 win over Danville on Oct. 5.)

Can they do it? Well, yes, if …

If Boyle’s defense can play as well as it played last week in its win at Russell County. If the Rebels can rattle Reese Ryan, the quarterback who has been starting for Lexington Catholic since all-star Kyle Bolin was injured in the Boyle game and who will face the biggest game of his life tonight. If the offense can limit its mistakes, at least to a number smaller than that of its opponent. If the Rebels can run the ball more consistently than they did at Russell.

If Danville can regain the control of the line of scrimmage, both on offense and defense, that yielded to Somerset in their first meeting. If the Admirals can keep Somerset’s passing game from running wild. If they can establish at least a little bit of a passing game of their own after going 0-for-Prestonsburg last week. If a team that doesn’t seem to be convinced that it can beat Somerset — a team that is completely confident it can beat Danville, by the way — somehow breaks through that wall.

Will they do it? Well, it’s possible. No one would be stunned if Boyle or Danville or both of them come home with regional championship trophies. To do so, Boyle will have to end a three-game losing streak to Lexington Catholic and Danville will have to end a five-game losing streak to Somerset. Both teams are good enough to do it, but my gut tells me neither one will.

The picks:

  • Lexington Catholic over Boyle County.
  • Somerset over Danville.

Last week: 2-1; season: 45-16 (.738).

* * *

Tonight’s two games match teams that are rivals within their respective districts, something that is not uncommon in tonight’s round of regional finals. Playoff regions are typically made up of four teams each from two districts, but of the 24 regional finals being contested tonight, 10 are between teams that finished first and second in the same district and three others include No. 3 seeds.

That leaves only 11 games matching two No. 1 seeds, which means that form held less than half the time statewide. All four Class A finals are 1-vs.-1 games, while none of the games in 6A and only one game each in 2A and 5A are.

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Advocate basketball previews under way

The start of basketball season is just 11 days away, and we at the Advocate sports department are roughly halfway through our series of season previews on area teams.

We’ve already published boys and girls previews on Casey County, Burgin, Kentucky School for the Deaf and Garrard County this week in the Advocate and at amnews.com, and Danville will be featured Friday. The previews for Lincoln County, Mercer County and Boyle County are scheduled for Monday through Wednesday next week (subject to change), and information on Danville Christian is coming soon as well.

The season opens Nov. 26.

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