One last week and round up across the state this week. This season has flown by, and what a season we have witnessed. The 8th region has some great players and coaches, that have made this year a wonderful experience to follow and watch. The 8th region could produce a Mr. Basketball, and with our draw at the state tourney a semi-final team?? We have a lot of balance in our top 3 teams, and our 4-10 could beat anyone on a given night. Makes it a fun tournament ride...

1. Owen County- The Rebels and Coach Duvall are approaching 30 wins and that milestone doesn't happen very often. They have welcomed all challengers this season, and upgraded their schedule along the way. Winning the region is in their grasp. The question to ask? Can they beat South Oldham and Oldham back to back? The draw is a BIG deal this season in my opinion, as it always is. Wins over South Oldham and Anderson, with only (1) game left, against our #2 team in the rankings the Oldham County Colonels.

2. Oldham County- The Colonels have been in my top 3 all year, and for good reason. They have lots of depth, play about 10 players. They are lead by (4) seniors, and a cast of younger kids. Coach Zerhusen knows he let one get away last year and will push these Colonels even harder to win this region. It appears they have got over their January funk and are clicking on all cylinders. Wins over Desales and CAL give them 6 in a row heading down the stretch.

2B. South Oldham- Had a couple head scratchers but every team does, especially in late January. Coach Simpson has the Dragons looking like a regional champion and winning 2 of the last 3 regions his Dragons have faith that they can. A win over Eminence, and a good showing at Owenton in front of a sell out, has them thinking a neutral floor it could be a different outcome than the 3 point loss.

3. Anderson County- This young team has to be driving coach Drury crazy, BUT he knows that all the experience they get now will be very beneficial come next season. They are very capable of knocking off any of these 3 teams above them, but also capable of getting beat by Spencer County in the first round of districts. Coach Drury knows how important it is to win the district and go into the regional draw as a winner, it keeps them away from 2 of these 3 above them in my rankings. A win over Simon Kenton and a loss to the Owen County Rebels this past week.

4. Shelby County- The Rockets are 9-2 in their last 11 games, Coach Couch has them playing better and Manica is looking like the best PG in the region. They have not been flashy in winning lately BUT they are finding ways to win. They could play spoiler in the tournament, and having a coach that has been to Rupp definitely bodes well for the Rockets. Wins over Henry County and Grant County this week.

5. Collins- They are still in my top 5, I know they have probably the worst record in the Gaither era, and sometimes make you wonder if they can still get it done. My thoughts are yes! They have encountered some injury's this season that really got them behind, but they are getting healthier and it is at the right time. They lost a heart breaker to Desales, but got a win against a very good GRC team on a neutral floor. 4 vs. 5 in my rankings next Wednesday for one not advancing to Roy Winchester gym. WOW

6. North Oldham-This team is in the same predicament as most of my 4-10 teams. They are capable of beating anyone, or losing to about anyone. They lost to Meade County, and Owen County this week, not two cupcakes that is for sure. The Mustangs hope playing that competition prepare them for the Oldham County Colonels first game of the district.

7. Henry County- After seeing this team live against Shelby County this week, I have a feeling on their floor with the right draw they can be a spoiler at the regional tourney. They are also a team that is very inconsistent but when playing well are dangerous. Losses to Shelby County and South Oldham this past week.

8. Walton Verona- The Bearcats are 17-7, but not against the best competition in the world, but this week the South Oldham Dragons pay them a visit, and they get them at Walton. A good measuring stick heading into district. They are capable of winning the 32nd that is for sure. Win over St. Henry this week, with a loss to Lloyd Memorial.

9. Simon Kenton- With 7 losses in a row and probably under dogs in the next 2 the Pioneers are looking forward to post season where those losses do not matter and they focus on winning the 32nd. The Pioneers play the hardest all around schedule in the region in my opinion. It prepares teams for post season, and the Pioneers can be dangerous in the tourney. They have also played (8) games in a row away from home, a recipe for losing, lost at Anderson this week.

10. Spencer County-Saw Coach Burns and he was happy that his Bears are improving and at the right time I might add. They lost to Shelby in 3OT at Shelby this week, proving how tough that district tournament will be next week. They got a win over Louisville Holy Cross this week as well.

11. Grant County-The Braves are the reigning district champs, and they will not go down without a fight. They lost to Scott County and Shelby this week. They were up 9 at the half against Shelby, really some ill advised shots and Shelby had the lead in 2-3 minutes of the 3rd. They are capable of making a run as they have shown us last 2 years.

12. Williamstown- The scrappy Demons show how mentally tough they are this past week. The get beat 40 by South Oldham, bounce back lost a tough one at Bracken County, come back and win 2 against Carroll County and Trimble. They are #4 seed in their district tourney but 32nd beware they can sneak up and beat you.

13. Carroll County- Someone please figure these guys out, inconsistent is the word that comes to mind. Go to Anderson and lost in OT, then get hammered at Williamstown. What?? They did a get win against Bellevue. I believe they get Henry County first round of the tourney and they are 1-1 against them.. Which Panther team shows up who knows.

14. Gallatin County-The Wildcats beat Villa Madonna this week. Coach Jones is dangerous come tourney time but when you have Carson Williams between you and the region, YIKES

15. Eminence- The warriors are scoring a lot of points, the problem is they are giving up alot of points as well. They got wins against Trimble, Evangel Chrisian, and Covington Latin, and played well against South Oldham in a loss. The warriors get Gallatin in the 4/5 match up and could beat the Wildcats.

16. Trimble County-The Raiders lost to Eminence and Williamstown this week. I know how hard it is for this coaching staff, players to endure this season and the community of Bedford. Be patient with Coach May, he will get the middle school right, and your younger program going, it will take time and hard work along the way, all that he is willing to do.