By DOUG EADS
The Pulaski County Maroons came into Monday night’s 12th Regional Tournament semi finals with a 25-6 won-loss record on the season, and a homecourt advantage over West Jessamine.
When all was said and done, none of that mattered.
West Jessamine used a 15-2 run in the first quarter to take a 20-12 lead over John Fraley’s club at the end of the first period — and despite more than one comeback attempt from Pulaski County — it would be the visiting Colts moving on to the tourney’s championship game, with an 82-68 victory over the Maroons.
Garrett Heath — playing in his final game of an outstanding prep career at Pulaski County — hit a three-pointer just before the horn sounded to end the first half, helping the Maroons get back in this one only trailing West Jessamine 35-30 at the intermission.
However, despite two or three comeback attempts in the second half, every time the Maroons got the deficit down to a working margin, it was the Colts who would have an answer.
Nate Breeden killed Pulaski County all night long from downtown, as he hit six three’s in the game on his way to a game-high 27 points.
Pulaski County meanwhile was led by Colton Fraley — also playing in the final game of an outstanding career — with 18 points, while Zach Travis added 15 points for the Maroons.
With the loss, Pulaski County finished its season with a 25-7 record, while West Jessamine moved on to Tuesday night’s championship game of the tournament, which will tip off at Pulaski County High School at 7 p.m.
By DOUG EADS
Way back last October in the weeks leading up to the start of the 2019-’20 high school basketball season, both Pulaski County and Lincoln County were widely favored to collide in March to settle a champion inside the 12th Region.
Yet on Wednesday night at Pulaski County High School on the opening night of the Boy’s 12th Regional Basketball Tournament, there stood the Patriots and Maroons staring at each other as they met in the first round of the tourney, instead of the title game.
And for the second time this season, Pulaski County had Lincoln County’s number.
John Fraley’s club used an 8-0 spurt to begin the second half to take this game by the throat, and the Maroons got a game-high 21 points from sophomore forward Zach Travis, helping Pulaski County to move on to the semi finals of the tourney with an impressive, 62-49 win over the Pats.
This game was a low-scoring affair in the first half — much like the first game this season between the two regional powerhouses, in a game won by PC 56-50.
On Wednesday night however with the stakes much, much larger, it was the Maroons that clearly made their case that they’re going to be a tough out in this tourney on their home court.
PC led the Patriots at the half 22-17, but took firm control of this one with a modest, 8-0 spurt to begin the third frame, taking a 30-17 lead over Lincoln County.
The Patriots — held without a three-point basket in the opening half of play — finally got on track from downtown after that PC spurt, as Baylor Mattingly knocked down a couple of treys for Lincoln County, as did Elijah Frye.
However, it was Pulaski County that led this affair 41-28 through three quarters oif play.
In the final stanza, the Patriots eventually trimmed that deficit down to seven points and had the ball, with momentum on their side.
However on that possession, PC’s Colton Fraley came up with a steal, and Travis drained a three-pointer from the corner on a nice dish from Fraley, and just like that, the Maroons were back up by 10 points, and closed it out from there.
KJ Combs also hit for double figures with 12 points for PC, and Fraley added 10 points, as the Maroons moved to 25-6 on the season with the win and onto the semi finals.
The Maroons will meet West Jessamine next Monday night in the first semi final game at Pulaski County High School at 6:30 p.m.
The Colts punched their ticket to the semi finals, with an 84-56 win last night over Southwestern.
By DOUG EADS
The 12th Regional Tournament draws were held earlier this morning at Pulaski County High School, and both the boy’s and girl’s tourneys are now set, and WOW, what a tournament they’re both going to be.
Simply put, both tournaments will see monumental matchups in round one.
On Monday night, the Girl’s 12th Regional Tournament will get things started at Lincoln County High School, and right out of the gate, fans are going to get to see the two prohibitive favorites — Casey County and defending 12th Regional champion Southwestern — square off against each other in round one of the tourney; a rematch of last year’s 12th Regional Tournament title game.
On the boy’s side, another matchup of two bonafide regional contenders will take place to kick off the tournament, as homestanding Pulaski County will square off against the 12th Region’s defending champion Lincoln County.
Here’s a complete rundown of the games, times, and dates of both regional tournaments.
GIRL’S 12TH REGIONAL TOURNAMENT AT LINCOLN COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL
MONDAY, MARCH 2ND
Danville vs. East Jessamine 6:30 p.m.
Casey County vs. Southwestern 8:00 p.m.
TUESDAY, MARCH 3RD
Mercer County vs. Wayne County 6:30 p.m.
Rockcastle County vs. Garrard County 8:00 p.m.
FRIDAY, MARCH 6TH — SEMI FINALS AT 6:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
SATURDAY, MARCH 7TH — FINALS AT 7 p.m.
BOY’S 12TH REGIONAL TOURNAMENT AT PULASKI COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4TH
Pulaski County vs. Lincoln County 6:30 p.m.
Southwestern vs. West Jessamine 8:00 p.m.
THURSDAY, MARCH 5TH
Somerset vs. East Jessamine 6:45 p.m.
Wayne County vs. Danville 8:15 p.m.
MONDAY, MARCH 9TH — SEMI FINALS AT 6:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
TUESDAY, MARCH 10TH — FINALS AT 7:00 p.m.
By DOUG EADS
Kade Grundy scored 22 of his game-high 31 points in the first half, and Somerset withstood a furious, fourth quarter rally by Pulaski County, as the Briar Jumpers posted an 80-69 victory over the Maroons on Thursday night to claim the Boy’s 47th District Basketball Tournament championship.
Thanks to Grundy and the Briar Jumpers hot start out of the gate, Somerset led this one wire to wire against the Maroons.
Grundy hit two three pointers, and Gavin Stevens added another trey, and just over a minute into the contest, Jeron Dunbar’s club led PC 9-0.
The Briar Jumpers methodically built up the lead, taking advantage of cold shooting by the Maroons in the opening half of play, as well as the fact Somerset hurt PC on the offensive boards, getting several 2nd chance point opportunities.
The Jumpers led the Maroons 40-25 at the half, and eventually built up the lead to as much as 19 points in the third quarter.
However, that’s when Pulaski County finally got on track and tried to get off the mat.
Held scoreless in the opening half, Colton Fraley helped lead the Maroons charge back, scoring his team-leading 19 points after the intermission.
And, thanks to Colton Fraley’s hot shooting in the second half, John Fraley’s club almost made it all the way back.
A steal and dunk by PC’s Zach Travis whittled the Somerset lead down to just three points at 68-65, with less than two minutes left to play in the contest.
PC at that juncture had all the momentum on its side, and Somerset was reeling somewhat.
No worries however for the Briar Jumpers. On the next trip downcourt, Grundy hit another three pointer in front of the Somerset bench to extend the lead to 71-65 over the Maroons, and PC would not threaten again.
The win by Somerset stopped a three-year slide against PC, as the Maroons had defeated the Briar Jumpers in the previous three 47th District Tournament title games, dating all the way back to 2017.
Grundy led everybody with 31 points, Kaiya Sheron added 15 points, while Stevens and Jase Bruner each added 11.
Pulaski County meanwhile was led by Fraley with those 19 second half points, Travis added 14 points, KJ Combs tallied 11 points, and Grant Oakes chipped in with 10 points.
The Briar Jumpers moved to 25-5 on the season with the win, while Pulaski County fell to 24-6 on the year.
Both teams will move on to the Boy’s 12th Regional Basketball Tournament at Pulaski County High School, which gets underway next Wednesday night, March 4th.
Check out The Doug Out Sports Blog tomorrow afternoon for the brackets, times, and dates of both the Girl’s and Boy’s 12th Regional Tournaments.
By DOUG EADS
Playing in their post season opener on Tuesday night at Rockcastle County High School against the homestanding Rockets, the Pulaski County Maroons couldn’t seemingly buy a basket in the opening night of the Boy’s 47th District Basketball Tournament.
John Fraley’s club went almost four minutes without scoring a single point, but ‘The Rock’ couldn’t take advantage of that slow start out of the gate by the Maroons, as Rockcastle County only led PC 2-0 midway through the first period.
However, once John Fraley’s club got things going offensively, the Maroons got going.
KJ Combs tallied 16 points, Zach Travis and Caleb Sloan each added 10 points, and reserve big man Logan Bates gave PC a big-time lift off the bench scoring a dozen points, helping the Maroons erase that slow start and taking a 33-15 lead over the Rockets by the intermission.
And, the Maroons didn’t let up in the second half either, outscoring ‘The Rock’ in the second frame 42-30.
As a result, it was the Maroons improving to 24-5 on the season with a 75-45 win over Rockcastle County.
The win punched Pulaski County’s ticket into tomorrow night’s championship game of the 47th District Tournament.
That game is set to get underway at Rockcastle County High School at 7 p.m.
By DOUG EADS
For the Pulaski County Lady Maroons, it was a win-win-win scenario on Friday night in the regular season finale for Chris Adkins and crew at Boyle County.
Number one — Pulaski County’s win meant the Lady Maroons will take some much-needed momentum into next week’s Girl’s 47th District Basketball Tournament at Rockcastle County High School, coming into the tourney riding a modest, four-game winning streak.
Number two — The 55-41 over the Lady Rebels Friday night improved PC’s record to 18-11 on the season — the sixth best mark inside the 12th Region.
Number three — In the second quarter on Friday night in the win over Boyle County, Pulaski County senior Heidi Thompson scored the 1,000th point of her prep career.
Not a bad night indeed.
PC raced out to a quick lead in Friday night’s affair, leading the Lady Rebels 21-10 after the first period of play.
In the second frame — while Thompson was scoring her 1,000th point of her outstanding prep career — the Lady Maroons got things done on the defensive end, limiting Boyle County to just three points in the frame.
Thanks to that performance, Adkins and crew led this one at the intermission by a score of 32-13, and basically never looked back on their way to win number 18 of the season.
Pulaski County will begin post season play on Monday night at Rockcastle County High School, taking on the homestanding Lady Rockets in the first round of the Girl’s 47th District Basketball Tournament.
That game is set to get underway at 6 p.m.