12th Region Tournament fields set
Both draws for the 12th Region Tournaments are complete. Here are the pairings:
BOYS at Lincoln County
Wednesday, March 4
Rockcastle County (13-16) vs. Wayne County (16-14), 6 p.m.
West Jessamine (23-8) vs. Danville (12-13), 8 p.m.
Thursday, March 5
McCreary Central (19-11) vs. East Jessamine (20-10), 6 p.m.
Lincoln County (19-9) vs. Casey County (9-19), 8 p.m.
Monday, March 9
Upper-bracket semifinal, 6 p.m.
Lower-bracket semifinal, 8 p.m.
Tuesday, March 10
Championship, 7:30 p.m.
GIRLS at Pulaski County
Monday, March 2
Mercer County (17-13) vs. Boyle County (17-11), 6:30 p.m.
Casey County (24-3) vs. Southwestern (19-10), 8:15 p.m.
Tuesday, March 3
Lincoln County (24-5) vs. East Jessamine (12-12), 6:30 p.m.
Wayne County (18-10) vs. Rockcastle County (24-6), 8:15 p.m.
Friday, March 6
Upper-bracket semifinal, 6:30 p.m.
Lower-bracket semifinal, 8:15 p.m.
Saturday, March 7
Championship, 7 p.m.
General admission is $6 nightly at both tournaments.
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By way of a little background, here are the results of games this season between the teams paired in first-round games, in bracket order:
- Rockcastle County 70, Wayne County 69, OT, Jan. 20 at Mount Vernon
- West Jessamine and Danville did not play; last meeting: West Jessamine 62, Danville 59, Dec. 15, 2007 at Nicholasville
- McCreary Central 78, East Jessamine 58, Jan. 16 at Nicholasville
- Lincoln County 69, Casey County 56, Feb. 20 at Stanford
- Mercer County 61, Boyle County 56, Feb. 10 at Danville
- Casey County 62, Southwestern 54, OT, Jan. 29 at Liberty
- Lincoln County 42, East Jessamine 32, Dec. 12 at Stanford
- Rockcastle County 57, Wayne County 55, Dec. 2 at Monticello
- Rockcastle County 51, Wayne County 36, Jan. 20 at Mount Vernon
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Now for a few thoughts on the brackets:
The West-Jessamine-Danville boys game matches Admirals coach Matthew Yates against a school he used to coach. The two teams played a close game in Yates’ fourth game as Danville’s coach last season, but the series was discontinued this year.
There weren’t really any good options available for the Casey County boys in their first regional draw since 1998, but the Rebels can’t relish the idea of playing Lincoln County in its own building just 13 days after they last met. Casey coach Todd Carman does like the fact that his team is playing in the lower bracket, though; he wants the players to come to the Wednesday night session to get a feel for the atmosphere before they take the floor Thursday.
Yes, I was wrong in predicting an early demise for McCreary Central last week. The Raiders not only survived Southwestern but won the 48th District, and their first-round draw in the regional isn’t bad, considering they won by 20 at East Jessamine near midseason
From the strange coincidence department, there will be back-to-back games between Rockcastle County and Wayne County, as the two schools meet in the last girls first-round game Tuesday and the first boys first-round game Wednesday.
Two of the three powerhouses in the girls regional had to fall into the same bracket, and the unlucky ones are Lincoln County and Rockcastle County, who will meet in a Friday semifinal if both win Tuesday. Meanwhile, Casey County sits alone in the upper-bracket but with a challenging first-round game against Southwestern, which took the Lady Rebels to overtime in January.
Look for another interesting game between Mercer County and Boyle County to open the girls tourney Monday. The first meeting was actually four games in one, with Boyle getting the jump on Mercer at the start, the Titans’ reserves clawing their way into the lead after coach Chris Souder benched his starters, the starters returning in the third quarter to stretch that lead to 15 points and Boyle making a furious charge in the fourth quarter that came up short.
It seems that most regionals around the state usually include at least one team with a losing record, but the 12th Region girls bracket has none. East Jessamine has the lowest winning percentage at .500, while Rockcastle, Lincoln and Casey are all at .800 or better. The boys bracket, however, has three sub-.500 teams, Casey, Rockcastle and Danville.
Finally, a weather forecast: It will be warm inside Lincoln County’s gymnasium even when the Patriots aren’t playing, and it’ll be downright hot when they are. This is no accident. If you’re going to the boys tournament, leave the sweatshirts at home. Wear short sleeves and thank me later.