Clark County vs. Oldham County
Winner plays Game 2 winner at noon Friday
CLARK COUNTY CARDINALS
Region: 10 | Record: 29-5 | Enrollment: 1,650
Scott Humphrey has a 317-111 record in 14 seasons as a head coach, including six years with Simon Kenton. He led Clark County to the Sweet Sixteen in 2007.
Bopper Stenzel6-0 Jr. 2.6 ppg
Robbie Stenzel6-4 Sr. 13.3 ppg
Jaylen Daniel6-6 Sr. 13.4 ppg
Corey Rogers6-5 Sr. 15.1 ppg
Vinny Zollo6-9 Sr. 11.8 ppg
With four senior starters, each averaging between 11.8 and 15.1 points a game, the Cardinals have plenty of weapons. Pace is not a problem, Humphrey said. "Our schedule has made us adapt to about every different style," he said. "A lot of teams really like to pressure us and get after us. We've had teams try to slow us down. I think our guys have done a great job of adapting to what we need to get done on that given night." Clark's "length" has been difficult for opposing offenses to deal with. The Cards mix in a variety of defensive looks and have held their opponents to 55.6 points per game this season.
Clark's four senior starters have combined for more than 5,000 career points. Robbie Stenzel, averaging 13.3 points a game this season, is the school's all-time leader, having surpassed 2,000 points in the 10th Region Tournament. Jaylen Daniel, averaging 13.4, surpassed 1,000 in the region. Also over 1,000 are Corey Rogers (15.1 ppg) and Vinny Zollo (11.8 ppg). Sixth man Travis Purvis, a senior averaging 7.5 ppg, probably would be over 1,000 if he hadn't lost his sophomore season because of an ACL injury.
Player to watch
Alan "Bopper" Stenzel, a 6-foot junior, is the lone non-senior starter. The younger brother of Robbie Stenzel "has really made the biggest difference in our team from last year to this year," Humphrey said. "He was out all last year with a knee injury. This year, he's started every game at point guard, and he just does a tremendous job out there. And it's allowed our other guys to slide to their natural positions. ... He's a really tough kid and really intelligent."
Clark County has made 21 previous trips to the Sweet Sixteen, winning the title in 1951. The Cardinals were runners-up in 1923 and 1950. Their most recent appearance came in 2007, when they made it to the quarterfinals.
OLDHAM COUNTY COLONELS
Region: 8 | Record: 25-7 | Enrollment: 1,400
Jason Holland is 37-21 in two seasons at Oldham County. A graduate of Red Bird and Berea College, he previously coached five seasons at Henry County and one at Wildwood in Florida. At Wildwood, his team went 29-4 and reached the Class 3A sectional (Final Four). His overall record over eight years is 137-91.
Tyler Wesely6-6 Jr. 8.8 ppg
Dylan Henderson6-0 Sr. 11.0 ppg
Kerry Smith6-2 Jr. 8.9 ppg
Blake Payne6-01/2Sr. 7.9 ppg
Nolan DeNise6-4 Sr. 10.7 ppg
Oldham County has been among the top 10 teams in the state in fewest points allowed nearly all season, yielding about 47 a game. The Colonels also have been strong on the boards, averaging 38 rebounds, and they've taken care of the ball — 6.8 turnovers per game. "That's why we've won the games," Holland said. "Even when we don't shoot it well, those three (categories) end up ... keeping us in the game anyway." Oldham plays man-to-man and a variety of zone defenses and has four presses for situational use.
Balancing act, part 2
If only the family checkbook could balance like this. Dylan Henderson leads Oldham's starters with an 11.0 scoring average. The other four average between 7.9 and 10.7. Henderson and Blake Payne earned All-District honors but not All-Region. Nolan DeNise, Tyler Wesely and Kerry Smith were named All-Region.
Player to watch
When junior forward Tyler Wesely is on his game, he makes the rest of the team play better, according to Holland. "He extends the defense. He's a 6-6 kid that can dribble, shoot the ball out on the floor. If you put a big kid on him, he can take him off the dribble, and if you put a smaller kid on him, he can post up. So he's got a good all-around game. He's a mismatch in high school a lot of times."
Oldham County has made 13 trips to the State Tournament, most recently in 2007. The Colonels have made it as far as the semifinals twice.