8th Region Showdown in the Roy

  1. #1
    by 8th Region Warrior is offline Premium Member
    Well all the marbles are on the table, lines have been drawn, hay is in the barn, you name it whatever your favorite slogan is this time of year, expect some great games this week across the Bluegrass. You don't have to go very far to New Castle Ky, this week for some great basketball action and coaching. Whoever wins this region will definitely have earned it.

    Instead of breaking down teams, I am going to look at each match-up and bracket, giving a preview of what we can expect. But only doing the first round games. It will give us a chance to catch our breath this weekend, and I will do a Final 4 preview next week.

    Wednesday March 2nd GAME #2

    7:45 Owen County vs. South Oldham

    This game has the makings of a classic, great players and coaches will be on the floor and on the sideline. Lets start with Owen County. We all know about the mayor of Owenton, Carson Williams, a Mr. Basketball candidate and just a pleasure to have watched over his 5 year career. But don't overlook his teammates, they have another all region type post player in Dunaway. The Rebel guards in Toftness, and McDonald most overlooked kids in the region pre-season, ask coaches now if they can play? They both can stretch the floor, and that just opens up the post play so picking what you are willing to give up is tough. I really believe that the Rebels like an uptempo game, I don't blame them, it gives people less time to double and worry about Carson. I was told by an old coach once that if you are better you want the game faster, totally believe that statement about the Rebels. The (3) lowest scoring output came in the 3 losses, averaged 50 ppg in those games. Mind you it came against teams that could be at Rupp Arena 2 weeks from now.
    Then there is the opponent the district runner up the South Oldham Dragons. All they have is a coach that has been coach of the year 2 of the last 3 seasons, and 2 regional titles in 2 of the last 3 seasons. Not to shabby I would say. But coaching only takes you so far and the Dragons have players that are very unselfish, pass the ball as good as anyone around and lot of ball handlers on the floor. Not to mention they like this 3 point shot thing. The Dragons have won 25 games, by shooting the 3 and making the extra pass. It is the (4) losses that concern me, in those 4 losses they gave up 75ppg, and as I mentioned earlier I think uptempo favors the Rebels in this match up. Talk about unselfish players, check this out
    Bray, Bouvet, Williams, Isaac, Griffin, Young, all average 9-12 points per contest, so you never know who is going to hurt you. The Dragons have made (328) 3 pointers, just incredible. They will need to make a bunch in order to have a chance.

    Prediction Owen 78 South 74
    One of the best games a fan wants to see. There will be tons of lead changes, and up tempo basketball. I think the size is to much for the Dragons in this one. Dragons were out rebounded the first match up by about 25 BUT it was a 1 possession game with (20) seconds left because of the 3 point shot. If the Dragons make (12) 3 pointers in this one then you can flip flop that score.

    Game #2 Start Time 6:00 pm.

    Match up Simon Kenton vs. Collins

    The Pioneers come into the regional tournament after winning the 32nd District, and playing alot better defense lately. Something we are accustomed to seeing from a Trent Steiner coached team. As I said all year in my reviews, this team is dangerous. Post season everyone is 0-0 and regular season is a wash. Now everyone is 0-0 again and districts are over. After all Owensboro lost their district tourney and won the big prize a couple weeks later last season. Simon is led by Fries, Hawkins and Cantrell, all capable of double digits. What impresses me about them is their length, and size. They can step out and shoot 3's and if they can grind you in a half court they can beat you. They only gave up 43ppg in the district tourney and is completely opposite of the two teams in their bracket.
    Their opponent the Collins Titans are playing better and Coach Gatiher has them back into the regional tourney. Last years Regional champion is capable of winning 3 in a row and getting back to Rupp I believe. Beating Shelby to get to where they are was a trait of this team, down early found away to hang around and win it in the 4th quarter. The Titans beat Simon in December at the HCIT, also played at Roy Winchester Gym. They held the Pioneers to 41 points, even though Fries went for 14 points and 10 rebounds. Clarkson is back for the Titans, and they seem to be improving because of it. Clarkson, Test, and Turner all average 10-11ppg, so it give the Titans 3 guys that can hurt you. I believe the people in attendance will love how Turner plays and will be in consideration for a POY next season as he is a junior.

    Prediction Collins 50 Simon 48
    This game will put you to sleep in comparison to the South and Owen game, however great match up with similar styles. Both want the game in the 50's. I think Simon playing man to man will benefit the Titans. The Titans have a ton of man to man sets that they execute well. However if Simon can make some (3)'s and get Collins out of that match up zone they will be there at the end. I see a close game with it being decided late. Can the Pioneers get to the offensive glass? Can the Titans make (3)'s on the horse shoe end of the gym? Those 2 questions are huge in this matchup.


    Thursday March 3rd Game #1
    Oldham County vs. Henry County


    The other bracket features the 29th District Champions the Oldham County Colonels. Coy Zerhusen has his team poised to win this region. They are getting after people on defense and its jump starting their offense. After the loss to Owen County they seem to have a different look to them. They are led by (4) seniors in Jacob Bates, Griffin McLarty , Brandon Johnson, and Clayton Wirth, all capable of 15-20 point games. Don't forget the junior's Ishmael Jones, and Ryan Heelen, coupled with some talented sophomores and the Colonels can come at you in waves. A lot of talk about their rotation and allowing to many kids to play. I do not but into it as much, who Coy puts on the floor with 4:00 minutes left mark however is important. The region can be won or lost with (1) possession.

    They are playing the host school the Henry County Wildcats, who made a come back against the Rebels to fall short Saturday but showed a lot of grit and toughness, cutting a 25 point deficit to 6 late. The Wildcats are led by Gavin Jamison, who I had on my preseason all region team, committed to Thomas More. He is super athletic and is a double/double machine. Dont forget about an old Colonel in Trey Wills, who transfered from Oldham his sophomore year he is averaging 11 ppg. He can stretch you and hit the 3. Hinkle whose brother Cody Hinkle led Henry to the regional semi's against the winner of the 29th that season vs. South Oldham, is right around 10ppg game as well. The Wildcats are hoping that match up zone can mess with the Colonels and make them into jump shooters. My concern is handling the pressure the Colonels can dish out defensively. If the Colonels get easy points off T/O it will be a long night.

    Prediction Colonels 70 Wildcats 52

    This game will be interesting for a little while, but if the Wildcats have to dip into their bench it will benefit the Colonels. Being at home will help the Wildcats but the Colonels depth and pressure will be too much. Colonels ease into the semi-finals, if the Wildcats do not handle pressure. If the Wildcats can turn it over 10 or less times they could make this game interesting.

    Game #2 7:45 Anderson vs. Walton Verona Bearcats vs. Bearcats
    The Bearcats won the 30th District, in 2 close contests. The first round game vs. Spencer was as good a high school game that you want to watch. With Garmon making a shot at the buzzer in OT. The Bearcats have grown, over the last couple weeks. Drury has been there done that, winning a couple regions along the way in doing so. His teams will compete for 32 minutes and get after the opposition. The Bearcats are led by Sophomre Cobe Penny (20)ppg, POY candidate next season. He is capable of a 30 point game and keeping the Bearcats in any game. A win over South Oldham in convincing manner makes me think this team can win this region as my dark horse. Throw in Harper, Gillis, and Garmon who all can score 12-15 points on a given night and you have a dangerous team for sure. Three of these Bearcats are under class men, making them maybe the preseason #1 team for next season.

    Their opponent is the Walton Verona Bearcats, runner up in the 32nd district. They are back into the regional tournament after about a 4 year lay off. They lost to North Oldham that season by 1 point in a great game. This team and coaching staff are different since then. The Bearcats are coached by Grant Brannen. He has worked hard at turning this program around. The Bearcats are thinking what could of been, after losing 2-3 kids on transfers, all which have turned out really good players, but lets not take away from these kids who have busted their butt to get to Henry County. They are led by Clinkenbeard, Kinmon, and Sullivan. Those 3 seniors have re-energized the program and have them poised for a regional run. all of these kids parents are coaches so they know they game and will compete to the end.

    Prediction Anderson County 62 Walton Verona 55
    This game will be close throughout in my opinion with Anderson making plays down the stretch to win. This game is one of the most intriguing games of the region, these 2 teams did not meet in the regular season. You have 1 coach that has been to the 8th region tourney countless times vs a coach that is going for the first of many in my opinion.
    Last edited by 8th Region Warrior; Feb 29, 16 at 10:15 AM.

  2. #2

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    Good analysis of all the games. Should be a great 8th Region tourney! The best place to watch a high school regional in this state is at Henry County.

  3. #3

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    Just noticed that the Boy Simon vs Collins, and Anderson vs Walton, is the same first round match ups as the Girls. Just weird....Thanks Oldham Oldie

  4. #4
    ColonelMike's Avatar
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    Gotta agree with your analysis Warrior.

    Please remind everyone who can't come to listen via the Voice of the 8th Region - Pegasus Sports. ALL GAMES will be broadcast LIVE at The Pegasus Sports Network - PSN. My voice is a little ragged due to spring allergies right now - but we will be there!!! (for those who want to relive the games - all broadcasts are also ARCHIVED on my site indefinitely!)

    Some miscellaneous thoughts:

    - Owen has ever won the region, but this is arguably the best Rebel team to put on the Owen uniform. Devin Duvall's team is on a mission and will be tough to stop. Everything has been building for this moment for the Rebels.
    - For those who think it's a shame Owen has to deal with such a tough opponent in round 1, don't be. Since Oldham and South - arguably #2 and #3 in the region - are in the same district, they had to be in opposite brackets. So, barring a major upset, Owen was going to have to defeat both Oldham schools. I guarantee you Devin Duvall would rather play one in the first round instead of potentially having to play them back-to-back in the semis and finals.
    - If Owen doesn't win, Oldham County sure made a case for themselves the other night in dismantling South in a convincing 29th district final. Oldham County is finally starting to play Coy Zerhusen basketball - the defense is fueling the offense. The pieces all seem to be coming together at the right time for Oldham.
    - South Oldham may have become "#3" in a lot of folks' eyes at this point, but underestimating the Dragons would be a mistake. South - after winning the region in 2013 and 2014 - suffered through injuries that held them to 11 wins in 2015. Steve Simpson has his kids playing hungry; with a chip on their shoulder. And this South team has already set the state record for most threes in a season. South is a shooting machine, pure and simple, and they're playing with a grudge. And they just might be the team in the tournament with the style of play that has the best shot at upsetting the Rebels.
    - Everyone else seems to be forgotten this year. Hmmm. Could someone outside of the Big Three rise up as a dark horse and win it? I'm not betting on it, but if I were to pick a dark horse candidate, I would pick Anderson County. Glen Drury - who won his 500th game this year - is the Dean of 8th Region coaches, and he's worth 6-7 points by himself. The Bearcats have a legitimate star in Cobe Penny, and a decent young supporting cast. A little luck, some good shooting, and the always good AC defense could put the Bearcats in the finals - and anything can happen on the last night. Remember, defense wins championships - and Drury is as good as any at coaching defense.
    - Team I wouldn't want in the first round: Simon Kenton. Trent Steiner always seems to be able to get a little more out of his team in the post-season. SK has been a strange team this year, a head-scratching team that passes the look test, but just hasn't translated that into wins. But they came alive in the district and come back to the Roy....remember two years ago, when Steiner took another underperforming SK squad and rode them all the way the finals? Can this squad do the same? They have the talent, and good grief, they have the size!

    Good luck to all the teams!! Enjoy the tournament!




    ColonelMike

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by ColonelMike View Post
    Gotta agree with your analysis Warrior.

    Please remind everyone who can't come to listen via the Voice of the 8th Region - Pegasus Sports. ALL GAMES will be broadcast LIVE at The Pegasus Sports Network - PSN. My voice is a little ragged due to spring allergies right now - but we will be there!!! (for those who want to relive the games - all broadcasts are also ARCHIVED on my site indefinitely!)

    Some miscellaneous thoughts:

    - Owen has ever won the region, but this is arguably the best Rebel team to put on the Owen uniform. Devin Duvall's team is on a mission and will be tough to stop. Everything has been building for this moment for the Rebels.
    - For those who think it's a shame Owen has to deal with such a tough opponent in round 1, don't be. Since Oldham and South - arguably #2 and #3 in the region - are in the same district, they had to be in opposite brackets. So, barring a major upset, Owen was going to have to defeat both Oldham schools. I guarantee you Devin Duvall would rather play one in the first round instead of potentially having to play them back-to-back in the semis and finals.
    - If Owen doesn't win, Oldham County sure made a case for themselves the other night in dismantling South in a convincing 29th district final. Oldham County is finally starting to play Coy Zerhusen basketball - the defense is fueling the offense. The pieces all seem to be coming together at the right time for Oldham.
    - South Oldham may have become "#3" in a lot of folks' eyes at this point, but underestimating the Dragons would be a mistake. South - after winning the region in 2013 and 2014 - suffered through injuries that held them to 11 wins in 2015. Steve Simpson has his kids playing hungry; with a chip on their shoulder. And this South team has already set the state record for most threes in a season. South is a shooting machine, pure and simple, and they're playing with a grudge. And they just might be the team in the tournament with the style of play that has the best shot at upsetting the Rebels.
    - Everyone else seems to be forgotten this year. Hmmm. Could someone outside of the Big Three rise up as a dark horse and win it? I'm not betting on it, but if I were to pick a dark horse candidate, I would pick Anderson County. Glen Drury - who won his 500th game this year - is the Dean of 8th Region coaches, and he's worth 6-7 points by himself. The Bearcats have a legitimate star in Cobe Penny, and a decent young supporting cast. A little luck, some good shooting, and the always good AC defense could put the Bearcats in the finals - and anything can happen on the last night. Remember, defense wins championships - and Drury is as good as any at coaching defense.
    - Team I wouldn't want in the first round: Simon Kenton. Trent Steiner always seems to be able to get a little more out of his team in the post-season. SK has been a strange team this year, a head-scratching team that passes the look test, but just hasn't translated that into wins. But they came alive in the district and come back to the Roy....remember two years ago, when Steiner took another underperforming SK squad and rode them all the way the finals? Can this squad do the same? They have the talent, and good grief, they have the size!

    Good luck to all the teams!! Enjoy the tournament!




    ColonelMike
    Great analysis, ColonelMike! Your network does a great job for the entire 8th Region! Keep up the great work as always!

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