Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

February 24, 2014

AARON SNYDER: Cutting right to the action

Aaron Snyder
The Independent

ASHLAND — Have you ever been on a date and all you really want to do is fast-forward to that first kiss?

Well, lucky for you, the Monday Morning Point Guard aims to please.

Why wade through a bunch of words when all you really want is the PG’s picks for district tournaments?

Let's just hope I’m not delivering the kiss of death.

The Dime

‰64th District boys: Nick Miller’s return has drastically changed the complexion of the district from what it was just a few days ago. The PG was perfectly satisfied with sliding the Tomcats just behind Boyd County, despite the 2-0 record for Ashland in head-to-head battles, but it now appears Ashland could be back on track. Nonetheless, the Lions have impressed me entirely too much with the completeness of their team. PG’s pick: Boyd County.

‰64th District girls: Even with very little rest and not a ton of depth, Boyd County prevailed over Rowan County in an impressive win on Friday night — it was the Lady Lions’ sixth game in seven days. Both Ashland and Boyd County have several of the top players in the region, including Boyd County’s new all-time scoring leader (Taylor Wheeler). It might be a less familiar name who proves pivotal for the titleholder on Thursday. Forward Destiny Goins, for example, has played well of late. PG’s pick: Boyd County.

‰63rd boys: While I don’t see Russell upsetting Lewis County on Tuesday, the likelihood did increase a bit with the return of senior point guard Ramsey Mullins. Plus, the Red Devils are at home. If Lewis County and Greenup County meet in the finals, which I expect, the Musketeers will finally knock off the Lions in their fourth attempt. PG’s pick: Greenup County.

‰63rd girls: Can anyone really challenge Lewis County here? Well, yes, of course. Russell nearly beat the Lady Lions on Jan. 20 in the same building in which they could match up for the crown on Thursday. Still, the inside-out game of Lewis County is too much. PG’s pick: Lewis County.

‰62nd boys: What happens in West Liberty, stays in West Liberty. Some crazy things can certainly happen here. West Carter could upset Elliott County and Morgan County could easily top East Carter even though the Cougars have suffered six straight losses. Jordan Perry, the region’s leading scorer at 24.3 points per game, is the difference as Morgan County moves on to meet West Carter — yes, you read that correctly — in the finals. PG’s pick: West Carter.

‰62nd girls: Well, duh! It’s gotta be the Lady Raiders. It’ll be the Carters in the finals, as the Lady Comets get revenge for an All “A” loss to Morgan County. And the East side will claim the title and its 29th victory of the season. PG’s pick: East Carter.

‰61st boys: Fleming County rolls, but the Panthers shouldn’t look too far ahead after this. Another meeting with Rowan County could lie in the region tournament, where it could be much different. PG’s pick: Fleming County.

‰61st girls: Each team has a very strong leader in production. Fleming County has Martina Lytle, Rowan County Faith Conn, Menifee County Ashton Woodard and Bath County Sarah Price. If nerves don’t get the best of Bath, the Lady Cats will be in the finals against the piping hot Lady Panthers. Fleming County hasn’t lost in February. PG’s pick: Fleming County.

‰57th boys: Lawrence County is exceptionally skilled, but the Bulldogs are still young in age, although not experience. The PG sees the Dawgs eking one out against Sheldon Clark, but they’ll fall to the mighty Golden Eagles in the championship game. PG’s pick: Johnson Central.

‰57th girls: Magoffin County hasn’t dropped a game since Jan. 10. The closest to stinging the Lady Hornets was Johnson Central. The Lady Eagles claw one out this time. PG’s pick: Johnson Central.

And a Nickel

‰Former Lawrence County standout Taylor Porter is shining at Murray State. The Racer freshman notched a career-high 25 points in a win over Southeast Missouri State on Wednesday. She drained four 3-pointers in the contest. She is currently ranked 13th in 3-point field goal percentage in the Ohio Valley Conference and is averaging 29 minutes a game as a starter.

‰Elliott County boys basketball coach Greg Adkins is now a proud father of three. The latest addition to the Adkins family is Lia Jade, who was born on Thursday morning. Lia’s sisters are twins Lake and Madi.

‰Johnson Central boys coach Tommy McKenzie set a school record for most 20-win seasons with five. He surpassed Mike Castle, who had four between the years of 1983-89. McKenzie is the Golden Eagles’ seventh-year coach.

‰East Carter junior Megan Stickler recently eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for her career. She is one of the leading scorers on an extremely balanced offense for the state-ranked Lady Raiders.

‰With Thursday’s 66-57 triumph, Mason County’s boys now own a 16-game winning streak over the Panthers.



Snyder's NEKY Super Seven

BOYS

1. Johnson Central (20-6)

2. Fleming County (19-9)

3. Rowan County (20-9)

4. Ashland (19-8)

5. Boyd County (17-13)

6. Lawrence County (19-9)

7. Lewis County (15-12)

Look who’s knocking (next two in): Elliott County, East Carter.



GIRLS

1. East Carter (27-2)

2. Ashland (20-7)

3. Boyd County (21-8)

4. Lewis County (18-10)

5. Fleming County (17-10)

6. Bath County (15-8)

7. Johnson Central (17-11)

Look who’s knocking (next two in): Russell, Rowan County.

30-Point Club

Bath County’s Blake Maze nearly dropped 30 in the first half against Fairview. He had 29 at the break en route to a 34-point performance.

Hunter Holbrook was sizzling beyond the arc as he hit six 3-pointers on his way to 30 points. The Elliott County Lion’s hot hand was crucial against West Carter.

Fleming County’s Troy Steward, certainly no stranger to this section, accumulated 30 in a Panthers’ win over Campbell County.

Tweet the PG

Follow the Point Guard on Twitter, @DindependentQB, for local sports news and scores. You can also find sports writer Zack Klemme roaming around in Twitter-land, @zklemmeADI.

And the Oscar goes to…

Make sure to check back next week for the annual Academy Awards of 16th Region basketball, a totally fake production with no real red carpet but plenty of nominees and hardware winners! OK, fine, there are no actual trophies even though I lobbied for The Independent to make life-size gold duplicates of my face to give to the chosen few.

See you next week!

AARON SNYDER can be reached at asnyder@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2664.