By DOUG EADS
Both Somerset and Pulaski County beat each other this season on the other team’s home floor, and both clubs finished with identical, 5-1 records in district play.
That meant at Monday’s 47th District Tournament meeting at Rockcastle County High School, the two clubs had to await a coin flip to determine the district’s number one seed.
Pulaski County head coach John Fraley got to call the flip, and he chose heads, but the quarter landed on tails, meaning Somerset was given the top seed, and will face Casey County next Tuesday evening, February 25th at 7:30 p.m. at Rockcastle County High School in the first round of the boy’s tourney.
“It really is the scariest game of the year, because everybody’s record goes back to 0 and 0,” stated Somerset head coach Jeron Dunbar.
“You’re going to get everybody’s best shot, and when we played Casey County the last time, they came out and punched us in the mouth early in that game, and they got up six or eight points and we had to battle back,” added the Somerset head coach. “We’ve got the experience, and I think we’ve got a little more physical players than they do, but it’s going to be a battle. You take no one for granted at this time of the year.”
The Briar Jumpers are 21-5 headed into the final week of the regular season — a week that will see Somerset play on Tuesday night at Garrard County, while finishing out the campaign on Thursday night with a home game against Danville.
Somerset will be a prohibitive favorite against Casey County, but as Dunbar said, anything can happen when it comes to the post season in Kentucky hoops.
Meanwhile, John Fraley’s Pulaski County Maroons — thanks to that coin flip — will have to play Rockcastle County in a loser goes home game on the Rockets home floor in round one of the tourney.
Pulaski County handled The Rock fairly easy this season, winning game one at Rockcastle County 85-56, and winning the game at The PC Gym 74-46.
This time — next Tuesday, February 25 at 6 p.m., the stakes will be much higher, with a berth to the 12th Regional Tournament — which will be held at Pulaski County High School on the Maroons home court — on the line for both teams.
While most coaches might cringe at the thought of having to play a team on its home floor in an elimination game in the first round of a district tourney, coach Fraley says that he can’t worry about Rockcastle County — his focus headed into the post season is on his own ballclub, the Pulaski County Maroons.
“We’ve just got to play the team that’s in front of us, and worry about us and not them,” stated the PC head coach.
“We’ve got to worry about us and try to get healthy, and we need to shore up some things defensively, and just keep working and be ready when the ball goes up next Tuesday,” Fraley added.
The Maroons are 22-5 on the season headed into Monday night’s regular season finale at home against Boyle County, and will be a big favorite to advance to the district championship game which will be held next Thursday night at Rockcastle County High School.
The Girl’s 47th District Tournament will kick off post season play next Monday night, with the Pulaski County Lady Maroons facing Rockcastle County at 6 p.m., with Somerset taking on Casey County in the nightcap at 7:30 p.m.
The girl’s championship game will be played next Wednesday night, February 26th.