High School Basketball

Marion County tops girls' pre-season poll

Marion County junior guard Makayla Epps is one of the key reasons the Knights topped the coaches' pre-season girls poll.
Marion County junior guard Makayla Epps is one of the key reasons the Knights topped the coaches' pre-season girls poll. AP

Top 25 girls' teams

(based on a survey of coaches; first-place votes in parentheses; last year's record listed)

1. Marion Co. (28) 27-7Returns eight of nine players from last season's Final Four team; a tough defensive team that should be very good in transition.

2. Manual (29) 33-5Deepest team in Coach Stacy Pendleton's 13 seasons; nearly all key players have point guard-type skills; 2011 Sweet Sixteen finalist.

3. Perry Co. Central (3) 27-4Randy Napier's best team since 1994 state champs at M.C. Napier; size and length to go with quickness, shooting ability and depth.

4. Boone Co. 28-6Athletic with size, speed and depth; should be sharp on defense, in transition and on the boards; consistent outside shooting a question.

5. Mercy (3) 24-8 Length and quickness are team strengths, making for a balanced inside-out attack; chink in the armor could be inexperienced depth.

6. Madison Central (1) 23-10 Eight of top 10 players return for 11th Region champions, who nevertheless must replace their leading scorer and top defender.

7. Butler (1) 28-5 Lost only two seniors from balanced team that reached State quarterfinals last March, its 13th time in the Sweet Sixteen.

8. Ryle 23-7 Returns three starters and six others with at least three years of experience; athletic team with ability to shoot and handle the ball.

9. Anderson Co. 23-9 Hungry after one-point loss in 8th Region finals; has three of the top eight players in the 8th Region, according to survey of coaches.

10. Clay Co. 27-7 Deep squad has a 1-2 scoring punch inside and improved point guard play; led state in field-goal percentage en route to Elite Eight.

11. Lincoln Co. 22-7

12. Elizabethtown 29-4

13. Sacred Heart 23-6

14. Monroe Co. 24-7

15. Lexington Catholic 19-12

16. Scott Co. 19-11

17. Rockcastle Co. 36-1

18. South Oldham 22-6

19. Casey Co. 25-7

20. Montgomery Co. 15-16

21. Bryan Station 24-7

22. Bowling Green 25-2

23. Ashland Blazer 26-5

24. Assumption 15-15

25. Sheldon Clark 25-9

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