Regional review, Monday 3/2
News and notes from day 1 of the girls 12th Region Tournament at Pulaski County:
- Mercer County defeated Boyle County 52-43; Casey County defeated Southwestern 50-41. Mercer plays Casey in Friday’s first semifinal.
- Mercer essentially buried Boyle by holding the Lady Rebels scoreless for almost 12 minutes at the start of the game. It was 10-0 at the end of the first quarter and 14-0 before Karlie Neal scored Boyle’s first basket. The Titans led by as many as 18 points in the first half and by 15 at the start of the fourth quarter, but Boyle battled back — just as it had done in its regular-season loss to Mercer — to within seven points in the final minutes.
- Leah Flora led Mercer with 14 points, including 11 in the second quarter, and Cawood Dedman added 12 points off the bench. Boyle’s Kendra Ross led all scorers with 19 points, while Hayley Hellyer scored 16 points in her final game before moving on to Campbellsville University, including 11 of her team’s 19 points in the third quarter.
- Casey got exactly the kind of tester it expected from Southwestern, which had taken it to overtime in the regular season. The Lady Rebels led throughout the last three quarters but couldn’t shake Southwestern until the last 2 or 3 minutes.
- Lauren Hatter led Casey with 18 points, including 12 in the second half; Megan Pittman added 15 points and had 11 of those in the first half. Sisters Danay and Devin Fothergill led Southwestern with 16 and 14 points, respectively; Ashley Fowler, who had rained 3-pointers on Casey in their regular-season meeting, scored only four points.
- Casey had by far the largest fan following of the first session, easily outdrawing de facto home team Southwestern in the late game. But there was plenty of room for all in Pulaski’s spacious gymnasium, and there probably will be all week.
- The first round concludes Tuesday night when Lincoln County plays East Jessamine at 6:30 p.m. and Wayne County plays Rockcastle County at 8:15 p.m. The second game could again be interesting: Rockcastle won two regular-season meetings, by 15 points at home in their most recent matchup but by only two at Wayne on opening night.
- The Other 15 (noteworthy scores from the rest of the state): Two of the state’s top teams advanced to a semifinal meeting in the girls 5th Region when Elizabethtown defeated Hart County 55-40 and tourney host Nelson County beat Adair County 74-46. … In the 7th, Mercy was upset by Assumption 68-61. … Crosstown rivals North Laurel and South Laurel met in the opening game of the 13th (remember, they’re in separate districts now), with South winning 40-35. … There were no boys games tonight, and only one region, the 3rd, plays on Tuesday. Eleven more regions open up on Wednesday.