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Collins vs. Walton-Verona Predictions/Updates (8th Region Round 1)

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Who:  Collins (12-8) vs. Walton-Verona (15-14)

What:  8th Region Round 1

Where:  Henry County HS, New Castle, KY

When:  Monday, 3/22/21

Broadcast:   Free live video coverage begins at 8 pm ET on www.pegasussportsky.com

Perhaps the stingiest defense in the 8th Region powered Collins to the 30th District crown.    The Titans are giving up less than 50 points per game, and have held even the most powerful of opponents well below their season average.   The last team to score over 60 points against the Titans was #13 Oldham County way back on 2/2/21.   Since then, 9 teams have faced the Titans, and only two - #5 Desales (53 points) and #12 Trinity (55 points) have eclipsed the 50 point barrier.   Anderson County managed just 39 in the district 30 title game.     The Titans feature a guard-oriented attack and their offense is largely predicated upon getting to the rim.    A transfer from Butler, sophomore guard Kenyon Goodin, leads the team in scoring at 11.9 ppg.    

Walton-Verona will try to overwhelm the Titans' defense with a wide-open, free-wheeling offense based on great shooting from all points on the floor.   Mike Hester's second Bearcat team returns to the region tournament after a one year absence with an exciting offense that generates 66.5 ppg.    Four Cats average in double figures:   junior Brant Smithers leads the way with 19.5 ppg, but he gets solid support from sophomore Carter Krohman (11.5 ppg), junior Cameron Christy (10.9 ppg), and senior Conner Davis (10.2 ppg).    Smithers, who has made 86 threes at 40%, is a tremendous outside threat, but he isn't alone.    Krohman (44.8%) and Davis (43.0%) are both prolific outside shooters.     

Neither team enjoys a large average margin of victory.   Collins is allowing very little (49.5 ppg), but scoring very little (51.8 ppg).    Walton is scoring a lot (66.5 ppg), but also allowing a lot (64.4 ppg).     

Collins won the regular season matchup at Walton, 51-44.

I'll post updates as I can from New Castle.

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I see Collins winning this one over Walton-Verona.  Collins has played well of late, and 5 of their last 6 losses have been to teams in the BGP top 20.  

I think Collins may pose the biggest challenge to Oldham County in the 8th region tournament.  Playing Collins is like going to the dentist . . . they make it hard to score!  Ultimately I think OC's size and experience will wear down the Titans.

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