Mike Fields' high school notebook: Views from glory road in 2012

Herald-Leader Staff writerDecember 27, 2012 

Re-gifting a few highlights from Kentucky high school sports in 2012:

Best father-son moment: Woodford County baseball coach Jeff Parrett watched his son Logan pitch a complete game in the Yellowjackets' 4-0 victory over Henderson County in the state finals.

Best father-daughters moment: Tates Creek girls' soccer coach Bo Lankster watched his daughters Aaron, Arly and Bailey play key roles in the Commodores' win over Notre Dame in the state finals.

Burger's king: Covington Holy Cross won the boys' All "A" Classic basketball title in dramatic fashion when Jake Burger banked in a buzzer-beating three-pointer to give the Indians a 52-51 victory over Bardstown.

Fitting finale: The girls' Sweet Sixteen title game matched the best two teams in the state. No. 1 Manual, led by April Wilson, outlasted No. 2 Marion County 58-54 in a fierce championship showdown in Bowling Green.

Triple crown of hoops: Darius Miller helped Kentucky win the NCAA championship four years after he led Mason County to the Sweet Sixteen title and earned Mr. Basketball honors. "It doesn't feel real," Miller said after UK's victory over Kansas in New Orleans.

One-girl points machine: Kayla Day of Fairview scored her team's first 40 points in a 67-55 win over Prestonsburg in early February. She finished with 49. "I know I've never seen anything like it in my life, and I guarantee you I'll never see it again," Fairview Coach George Bellamy said.

Mat-inee idols: Trinity senior John Fahy became the sixth wrestler in state history to win four state titles. He took top honors at 138 pounds and was named the outstanding wrestler of the tournament. Johnson Central senior J.J. Jude repeated as 170-pound champ and had a two-year record of 105-0.

It's a baseball town: Bryan Station pitcher Ryne Combs was selected Mr. Baseball, the seventh Lexington player to win the honor. Preceding Combs were Lexington Catholic's Ben Revere (2007), Lafayette's Chaz Roe (2005) and Austin Kearns (2008), Henry Clay's Collin Cowgill (2004) and Scott Hodges (1997), and Paul Laurence Dunbar's Josh Ellis (2003).

Performing in a pinch: Lexington Christian won the All "A" Classic baseball title thanks to Lincoln Henzman's pinch-hit three-run homer that beat DeSales 4-1 at Whitaker Bank Ballpark. It was Henzman's first homer of the season.

Comeback Cougars: Morgan County won its first seven football games, a remarkable accomplishment considering what the Cougars went through earlier in the year. On March 2, a tornado leveled downtown West Liberty, and the school's football facilities were wiped out. The damage was not only physical, but also psychological. But Morgan County got its stadium lights back up the night before a pre-season scrimmage, and they went on to have one of the best seasons in school history.

TD Timmons: Franklin County star Ryan Timmons deserves a catchy nickname (like Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel's "Johnny Football"). Timmons scored a TD about one out of three times he touched the ball over the past three seasons.

Passing fancy: Nelson County quarterback Dylan Beasley broke a 21-year-old state record when he threw for 652 yards against Marion County on Aug. 31. Beasley's reign as record-holder was brief. Prestonsburg's Jarredd Jarrell passed for 676 yards against Pike County Central two weeks later.

Go West, young golfers: West Jessamine, led by medalist Fred Allen Meyer, won the boys' state golf title, five years after West Jessamine's girls captured a state title.

Six of one, half-dozen of the other: Highlands' dominance in football reached record proportions as the Bluebirds became the first school to win six consecutive state titles. Coach Dale Mueller said his team wasn't thinking about the streak, but rather concentrating on one title for this particular team.

Rolling Rocks gather trophies, not moss: Trinity became the first school to win state football and basketball titles in the same school year. Trinity was unbeaten (mythical) national champs in football, and was close to unbeatable in hoops. The Rocks' star was James Quick, who was not only a key player on the football and basketball teams, he also won an individual state track title by running the fastest 200 meters in state history (20.94).

Winning by a whisker: Bryan Station won a boys' state track title for the first time in almost 30 years. By finishing second in the 4-by-400 relay by 39 hundredths of a second, the Defenders edged five-time defending champ Male 66-65 to take the 3A championship.

Happy homecoming: After coaching basketball for 32 years on the college level, including an NAIA national title at Georgetown, Happy Osborne left his job as an assistant at Tennessee Tech to coach high school hoops at Montgomery County. "At the end of the day, I'm a Kentucky guy. I really, really love Central Kentucky, and I want to live here," he said.

Football's 300-club: Sam Harp's departure from Danville to take a job in Lebanon, Tenn., means that five of the six winningest football coaches in state history have left the Kentucky high school sidelines in recent years. Only Philip Haywood of Belfry, who's No. 1 with 362 career victories, will be back next season. Bob Schneider (345 wins) retired from Newport Central Catholic a couple of years ago. Dudley Hilton (345) left Bell County for the University of Pikeville. St. Xavier's Mike Glaser (336) retired at the end of this season. Harp (326) is leaving for Tennessee. Male's Bob Redman (317) crossed the Ohio River to coach at Jeffersonville, Ind., for the 2010 season. Besides Haywood, the only other member of the 300 club still active in the state is Russell's Ivan McGlone (309).

Gone but not forgotten: Former KHSAA commissioners Louis Stout and Billy Wise, who between them served that organization for 55 years, passed away within seven weeks of each other. Both left a legacy of championing young student-athletes across the state. Bob Wright, who coached Ashland to the 1961 Sweet Sixteen championship, also died, as did G.J. Smith, a high school basketball star and Hall of Fame baseball coach in Laurel County, and Jean Wright, a state championship track and cross country coach at Franklin County.

A gentleman's legacy: Johnny Owens, who passed away in October, was the most accomplished amateur golfer in state history. He first earned statewide notice by winning state high school titles at Henry Clay in 1943 and '44. Mr. Owens kept a connection with young golfers all his life. Two weeks before he died, Mr. Owens met with the Morton Middle School golf team. He showed them his invitation to the 1964 Masters, told them about the famous golfers he had met, and encouraged their generation to appreciate the game.

Mike Fields: (859) 231-3337. Twitter: @MikeFieldsNotes.Blog: fieldsnotes.bloginky.com

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