BluegrassPreps.com Trinity State Tournament Preview
Trinity comes into the state tournament as one of the favorites, and it is easy to understand why. Unfortunately, the Shamrocks play one of the other favorites, Scott County, in the first round. But that is what happens in a blind draw.
Trinity comes into the tournament with a record of 30-3. It is a good shooting team, averaging 50.2% from the field as a team. It shoots the three extremely well, averaging 41.3% as a team from three. It has good overall size, with its starters ranging from 6' 2" to 6' 5". It comes into the tournament playing well, as evidenced by its 68-53 defeat of Ballard in the Seventh Region championship game. They looked really good in that one.
Trinity is led by three of the best players in the state. Jay Scrubb, a 6' 5" senior, was named the Seventh Region player of the year after averaging 17.9 ppg and 7.1 rpg for the Rocks. Scrubb scores from both inside and outside; he is a 51.2% shooter from the field, and a 36.2% 3-point shooter. David Johnson, a 6' 5" junior, averages 13.9 ppg and is a 43.9% 3-point shooter (51.2% field goal shooter). Justin Powell, a 6' 4" sophomore, averages 11.3 ppg and is a 50.8% 3-point shooter (54.1% field goal shooter). While Scrubb will likely go to prep school next year, all three are high Division I players talent-wise.
Trinity's other two starters are solid. Stan Turnier is a 6' 3" junior who shoots 41.6% on 3's. He averages 7.8 ppg, most of which comes from 3-point shooting. Jamil Hardaway, a 6' 2" junior, averages 6.2 ppg and shoots 60.7% from the field. Hardaway is the only Trinity starter who is not a 3-point shooting threat.
Trinity's depth is a little suspect. The leading scorer off the bench is senior Robbie Springfield, who averages 3.9 ppg.
Depth (or lack thereof) played a role in two of Trinity's losses. Foul trouble limited Jay Scrubb's minutes in Trinity's 65-57 loss to Fern Creek in the King of the Bluegrass tournament. Justin Powell was sick and did not play in Trinity's 53-52 loss to Madison Central. In its third loss, a 52-50 loss to Lexington Christian, Trinity shot only 38.5% from the field, including making 8 of the 26 3-point shots they took (30.8%).
Thus, the keys for Trinity seem to be what they often are for good teams: shoot the ball well and stay out of foul trouble. Trinity has not had very many bad shooting nights, and I don't think they will be intimidated by playing in Rupp Arena. But Scott County will play some solid defense, so it will be interesting to see how they shoot.
As for staying out of foul trouble - teams from Louisville have been known to complain about how games in the state tournament are called. Of course, that is largely a result of officials from across the state officiating at the state tournament. Again, we will have to wait and see how it plays out.
I hope the Trinity-Scott County game lives up to the anticipation. If it does, it will be a great one.