The Kentucky high school basketball postseason is underway! Region tournaments continued across the state on Friday night. Below you’ll find links to scores, selected game recaps and our coverage of the postseason so far.
South Warren 63, Glasgow 46 (Fourth Region): The Spartans advanced to the finals for the first time in program history. They’ll play Bowling Green, which defeated Logan County, 72-39. The Purples advanced to their fifth title game in the last six seasons.
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Elizabethtown 50, Nelson County 39 (OT, Fifth Region): The Panthers held Nelson County scoreless in the overtime period to advance to their fifth consecutive championship game. E-town had won three straight region titles before the Cardinals knocked it off in last year’s finals.
The Panthers trailed by five points with 1:45 left in regulation. Whitney Hay hit a runner, Morgan Gattis got a steal and Karson Knight drilled a triple to knot the game to force overtime in the waning seconds. Leikyn Walker led the Panthers with 18 points; she was 8-for-8 from the free-throw line.
Bardstown 46, John Hardin 41 (Fifth Region): The Tigers advanced to the finals for the first time in program history; they’d only won one region tournament game before this season (that came in 1996). They’ll meet E-town — whom they defeated 66-58 in the regular season — in the title game 7:30 p.m. at Central Hardin.
Simon Kenton 66, Oldham County 41 (Eighth Region): Northern Kentucky University signee Ally Niece led the Pioneers with 14 points. Simon Kenton reached the finals for the sixth straight season and for the 10th time since joining the Eighth Region in the 2005-06 season.
Anderson County 58, Walton-Verona 54 (Eighth Region): The Bearcats connected on seven of their 10 three-point makes in the second half, including one by Amiah Mason, a freshman, to give Anderson County a 56-54 lead with 26.5 seconds left (per John Herndon of The Anderson News). Jaclynn Ruble hit two free throws to finish off Walton-Verona. Anderson County is in the finals for the first time since 2015.
Holmes 55, Conner 43 (Ninth Region): Laila Johnson led with 17 points while fellow senior Tyrah McClendon-Englemon had 12 for the Bulldogs, who reached their fourth straight title game. They’ll try for their third straight championship when they meet Ryle Sunday afternoon at NKU’s BB&T Arena.
Ryle 66, Dixie Heights 59 (Ninth Region): Maddie Scherr, a sophomore who’s been offered by the University of Kentucky, scored a game-high 24 points for the Raiders. Lauren Schwartz had 21 for Ryle, which will play in its second title game in the last three years. The Raiders have never played in the Sweet Sixteen.
Clark County 51, Campbell County 48 (10th Region): The defending region champion knocked off the No. 1 team in Dave Cantrall’s Rating the State, leaving Seventh Region favorite Sacred Heart as the top-ranked team alive in the postseason. Junior Maleaha Bell had 10 points and 10 rebounds and senior Shemaya Bahanan also finished with 10 points to lead the Cardinals.
Some play-by-play courtesy of The Ledger Independent’s Evan Dennison: Campbell County pulled to within 49-48 with 5.8 seconds left when Miss Basketball finalist Taylor Clos connected on two of three free-throw attempts after she was fouled on a three-pointer. The Camels fouled Clark County sophomore Kennedy Igo, who hit both free throws of a one-plus-one with 3.6 left. Clos’ game-tying three-point attempt went left at the horn; the NKU signee finished with a game-high 25 points and was 5-for-12 from beyond the arc.
The Cardinals will play Scott in the region finals 7 p.m. Saturday at Mason County.
Scott 65, Mason County 63 (2OT, 10th Region): Anna Clephane, a Ball State signee, hit two of her four free-throw attempts inside the final 30 seconds to make the difference for the Eagles. She finished with 18 points and five rebounds. Teammate Summer Secrist had a game-high 23 points on 10-for-14 shooting.
Victoria Brooks led Mason County with 21 points and four steals.
Casey County 65, Southwestern 49 (12th Region): Sophomore Gena Cravens had 23 points to lead the Rebels, who reached the finals for the first time since 2013. Lauren Lee and Natalie Duggins, also sophomores, had 14 apiece.
Casey County is led by second-year head coach Tara Weddle, who as a player helped the Rebels reach the 2008 region championship before an All-American career at Kentucky Christian University, which won four National Christian College Athletic Association titles during her tenure.
Mercer County 67, Lincoln County 64 (12th Region): Miss Basketball finalist Seygan Robins, a University of Louisville signee and the reigning Sweet Sixteen MVP, had 30 points to help keep the defending champion’s season alive. Toni McCombs, a junior who’s averaged only 5.5 points for the Titans, had 21 points in the back-and-forth affair.
Matt Overing of the Danville Advocate-Messenger provided ample play-by-play of the final minute on Twitter: McCombs hit two free throws with 43 seconds left to give Mercer a 65-61 lead before Lincoln’s Trinity Shearer hit a spinning layup to cut the Titans’ lead back to two with 26.5 seconds remaining. Robins hit two free throws with 23.9 remaining; Shearer went 1-for-2 at the line with 14 seconds left, Lincoln County won a jump-ball call but then was whistled for traveling with 10.1 seconds to play.
Emma King, a junior who’s committed to the University of Kentucky, had 32 points, four rebounds and three steals for the Patriots.
Harlan County 68, South Laurel 62 (13th Region): University of Kentucky signee and Miss Basketball challenger Blair Green had 38 points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals to lead the Black Bears, who will try to win the title for the first time. Harlan County is 0-for-3 in finals trips; it’ll look to break that streak against North Laurel, a 64-44 winner over North Laurel, at 7 p.m. Saturday at Corbin Arena.
Hazard 74, Lee County 50 (14th Region): Senior Haley Turner had 27 points for the Bulldogs, who are playing in the region tournament for the first time since 2005. They reached the finals for the first time since 2001. Hazard went on to win the state title the last time it won the region, in 1997. The Bulldogs will play Knott County Central, 69-36 winners over Powell County, at 7 p.m. Saturday at Estill County.
Hannah Kash had 32 points for Lee County.
Johnson Central 43, Shelby Valley 42 (OT, 15th Region): Morgan Hopson’s only made field-goal of the game was a three-pointer at the buzzer to send the Golden Eagles to the finals for the second straight year. Johnson Central had lost 12 straight games to Shelby Valley, its last win in the series coming in the first round of the 2008 region tournament, and beat the Wildcats for only the third time in the history between the programs.
Hopson, a junior finished with five points — she hit two free throws — in six minutes, most of which came in the overtime period as Johnson Central battled foul trouble. Alaina Castle, also a junior, had 17 points (7-for-10 shooting) and 10 rebounds to lead the Golden Eagles.
Shelby Valley, this year’s All “A” Classic runner-up and the 15th Region favorite, was outscored 8-0 in the fourth quarter. It was only the second in-state loss for the Wildcats this season. Kayla Newsome had 12 points to lead Shelby Valley. Eighth-grade standout Cassidy Rowe had 10 points, four rebounds and three steals for the Wildcats.
Pikeville 61, Floyd Central 42 (15th Region): Alivia Gearheart, Leslie Stewart and Kelsey Jo Tackett each scored 11 points for the Panthers, who will meet Johnson Central in the finals 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Eastern Kentucky Expo Center. Kirsten Cole-Williamson had 10 points for Pikeville; she and Stewart both grabbed seven rebounds.
Grace Martin had 10 points on 5-for-5 shooting for Floyd Central, which ended its inaugural season with a 16-10 record.
Ashland Blazer 69, West Carter 61 (16th Region): Mykasa Robinson, a U of L signee and Miss Basketball finalist, had 32 points, nine rebounds and six assists for the Kittens, who made the finals for the first time since 2015. West Carter eighth-grader Allie Stone led the Comets with 24 points.
Boyd County 56, Russell 50 (16th Region): Marshall commit Savannah Wheeler had 20 points to lead the Lions. The victory set up a rematch with Ashland Blazer, whom the Lions defeated in the 64th District finals last week in two overtimes. They’ll play 7 p.m. Saturday at Morehead State University.
No. 6 Ballard 92, Central 54 (Seventh Region): Tyron Duncan led the defending region titlist with 19 points. The Bruins used an 18-0 run early to close the door on an upset bid.
No. 7 Trinity 62, St. Xavier 41 (Seventh Region): Justin Powell had 16 points to lead the Shamrocks. Mr. Basketball finalist Jay Scrubb had 10 points and star junior David Johnson scored 12 for Trinity, which outscored their rivals 30-13 in the semifinals matchup. Trinity’s win guaranteed that either it or Ballard will win the region for the seventh straight year.
2018 postseason coverage
Region highlights: Lafayette bounces back, 10th Region games go to wire
Region highlights: Motivated district runner-up starts game on 24-2 run
Region highlights: Pair of top-10 girls’ teams continue title hunt with big wins