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As we draw near to the end of the regular season, the usual issues and questions begin to percolate. Will Mason County be able to take advantage of that nearly insurmountable home-court edge? Will this be Bracken County's year to finally capture that elusive 39th district crown? Who is poised to take the 40th district title? Is popcorn superior to bbq? Can Scott upset Campbell in the 37th? Who will capture player-of-the-year honors?

For now though, we focus on the previous week and the ramp-up to the postseason.

1. Campbell County (23-2, 9-1 region). Don't look now, but the Camels are on another win streak, taking five straight after the loss to CovCath. Coach Russell's squad made easy work of Harrison County, Bellevue and Newport (connecting on nine threes in this one), with lots of minutes from the reserves. This week will give us a better opportunity to gauge Campbell's post-season readiness as they take on Simon Kenton, Pendleton County and Cooper.

2. Paris (20-7, 11-1 region). The Hounds tore apart the Indians of Montgomery County by the score of 72-25 before falling to a pack of Hounds of a different color in the form of state-ranked Corbin, 92-74. Jekobi Wells and Eric Johnson continues to put up all region-worthy numbers. Paris hosts Clark County and Bourbon County this week in an effort to cement the #1 district seed.

3. Scott (15-9, 5-1 region). The Eagles had a rough week but look to benefit from the tough scheduling come tourney time, falling to CovCath, Conner and Lafayette (a cliffhanger). Ryle and Bishop Brossart provide the competition this week.

4. Clark County (17-9, 8-2 region). Clark pulled away from Mason County 79-61 in their only action last week, led by Ryan Cooper's 24/8 and a 10/14 double-double from Will Philpot. Clark plays three games this week - Bath County, the crucial district tilt at Paris, and Bracken County.

5. Bracken County (11-12, 8-6 region). Austin Crawford is getting big-time help from Brady Jones, Cooper Engnes and the Fishers as they climb into the top 5. A loss at West Carter was followed up by an exciting 82-74 win at the Igloo over Pendleton County. Bracken could vault into the top 4 with a win over visiting Clark County on Saturday, but will fatigue be a factor as they first square off against Montgomery County, Williamstown and Newport?

6. Pendleton County (15-9, 7-3 region). Coach Belcher's Cats dispatched Calvary Christian and Bishop Brossart before falling at the Igloo to Bracken. Soph sensation Dontaie Allen picked up his 1500th career point and 600th career rebound in the win over Brossart, and scored 32 (or 35) with 18 boards in the loss to the Polar Bears. Williamstown, Campbell County and Montgomery provide this week's competition.

Then there's a dropoff.

7. Bourbon County (12-14, 5-6 region). No coincidence that the Colonels have reeled off four straight wins upon Ameryon Blackburn's return, handling Western Hills, Franklin County and Owen County last week. At Madison Southern and Paris this week.

8. Mason County (13-15, 5-6 region). Tyrion Fox (13/6) has added muscle to the Royals' frontcourt, but the cast of characters is still fluid. The undermanned Royals had enough firepower to dispatch Montgomery County and Western Brown (OH), with a loss to Clark County in between. Harrison County away is the only game on the schedule this week.

9a. Bishop Brossart (9-16, 6-4 region). "Stangs are 9a because they're ahead of NC alphabetically. Took care of Augusta early in the week before falling to Pendleton and NewCath. Coach Code's young squad has taken their lumps this season, but watch out next year. As for next week, Bellevue and Scott are on tap.

9b. Nicholas County (11-11, 6-6 region). The Jackets split a pair of out-of-region affairs last week, falling to Sayre and beating Berea. Busy week on tap with Augusta and St. Patrick among this week's four foes.

The rest:

11. Montgomery County (6-19, 2-8). Five-game tailspin for Coach Daniel's Indians. Bracken and Pendleton on the road this week.
12. Augusta (11-11, 6-6). The second of our 11-11/6-6 teams, coach Kirk's Panthers lost their only two games last week, falling to Bishop Brossart and showing well against West Carter (down a handful with less than 4 minutes to play). Nicholas and Bath this week.
13. Harrison County (4-22, 2-11). And 6 losses in a row for the Breds, all against very good competition. Mason County at home this week.
14. Robertson County (13-10, 3-6). St. Patrick was one of the Devils' wins last week, and they play again on Tuesday.
15. Calvary Christian (11-12, 4-6). Cougars came from way behind to down St. Patrick on Saturday as they posted a 2-1 week. Three games again this week.
16. St. Patrick (7-19, 1-9). Up 14 against CC only to see it slip away. Swolsky's return gives the Saints a fighting chance against Robertson and Nicholas this week.
17. Silver Grove (4-18, 0-6). Trains snapped a 6-game losing streak last week.

Player of the week:

Austin Crawford (Bracken County) and Dontaie Allen (Pendleton County); largely for the show they put on in the Igloo last week.

Games to watch this week:

Campbell County vs. Cooper, 2/10
Clark County @ Paris, 2/9
Scott @ Ryle, 2/7
Bourbon County @ Paris, 2/11
Clark County @ Bracken County, 2/11