12th Region Tournament pairings

One of the two girls teams that figure to have the best chance to take down defending champion Rockcastle County will be eliminated in the very first game of the girls 12th Region Tournament.

Meanwhile, the Danville boys got no reward at all for winning their first district title in five years last night, as they drew favorite Wayne County for the final first-round game of the boys 12th Region Tournament.

Pairings for both tournaments were drawn today — (full schedules are below) — and the most interesting of several good first-round matchups is the opening game Monday between the Lincoln County and Casey County girls. The two teams are ranked just below Rockcastle in the major power ratings, and one or the other of them has played the Lady Rockets in the regional finals in each of the last three years and four of the last five years.

Forty-fifth District champion Lincoln and 47th District runner up Casey played one of the best games of the season just eight days ago, when the Lady Patriots won 72-69 in double overtime after two Casey buzzer-beaters at the end of the fourth and fifth periods extended the game.

Two other Advocate-area teams, Mercer County and Garrard County, will also face off in the first round rematch of a game the Titans won 53-46 at home 11 days ago, and Burgin will face Southwestern in its first regional appearance since 2006.

In the boys tourney, Danville and Wayne are one-half of a stacked lower bracket that also includes Pulaski County and East Jessamine, who will meet in Thursday’s first game.

There’s also a matchup of two area teams on Wednesday night, as Mercer will play Lincoln in the second game after Southwestern and Rockcastle, the only two teams in the field with sub-.500 records, face off in the opener. Mercer and Lincoln have already met twice this season, with the Patriots winning 62-46 on Dec. 23 in Mercer’s Christmas tournament and the Titans winning a rematch 77-71 on Feb. 4 at Lincoln.

The boys regional will be played at Lincoln, and the girls will play at Pulaski. Admission is $6 per session at both tournaments. Starting times for the second game in the first round and semifinals are approximate; those games will actually begin 25 minutes after the first game in each session ends.

Here are the schedules for both tournaments, in bracket order:

BOYS

At Lincoln County

First Round

Wednesday, March 2

Southwestern (14-16) vs. Rockcastle County (7-22), 6 p.m.

Mercer County (21-8) vs. Lincoln County (15-15), 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, March 3

Pulaski County (25-6) vs. East Jessamine (22-7), 6 p.m.

Danville (19-9) vs. Wayne County (27-4), 7:30 p.m.

———

Monday, March 7

Semifinals

Southwestern-Rockcastle County winner vs. Mercer County-Lincoln County winner, 6 p.m.

Pulaski County-East Jessamine winner vs. Danville-Wayne County winner, 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 8

Championship

Semifinal winners, 7 p.m.

* * *

GIRLS

First Round

Monday, Feb. 28

Lincoln County (22-6) vs. Casey County (23-6), 6 p.m.

Southwestern (23-7) vs. Burgin (11-15), 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 1

Mercer County (20-8) vs. Garrard County (15-8), 6 p.m.

Rockcastle County (29-1) vs. Wayne County (16-13), 7:30 p.m.

———

Friday, March 4

Semifinals

Lincoln County-Casey County winner vs. Southwestern-Burgin winner, 6 p.m.

Mercer County-Garrard County winner vs. Rockcastle County-Wayne County winner, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 5

Championship

Semifinal winners, 7 p.m.

Times are approximate for the second game in the first round and semifinals. Those games will begin 25 minutes after the first game ends.

Admission is $6 per session at both tournaments.

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