Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local Sports

December 10, 2012


ASHLAND — All right, that’s enough. The procrastination must end.

It seems like everyone around me is on the ball, getting their Christmas shopping finished up early this year.

Most also have a head start on the PG in basketball-watching, too.

Meanwhile, I’m standing 35 feet from the hoop, just dribbling away as the clock ticks toward zeroes.

"”Do something!” The PG can hear the shouts, some erring on the side of unruly, from the crowd. “Pass the rock!”

It’s time for me to make a move and drive to the rim.

I’m hitting both the mall and the court this week.

We’re almost two weeks into the season (and two weeks away from Christmas) and I haven’t even witnessed my first high school tipoff, or my first foul, of the year. And I’m hearing there are plenty of those this season.

So, no more missing out.

The PG must show his face starting now.

I’ve got to show I’m worth a Dime ...

The Dime

‰Even though Fleming County finally knocked off Rowan County for the first time in its last nine tries, Rowan County took an equally large step last Monday. The Vikings, by sending the Panthers to double overtime and losing by just five at 81-76, showed they’re not exactly finished yet. The two-time defending champions still have a few tricks up their sleeve.

‰One is not so easily hidden. He's 6-foot-11 senior center Matt Brown. Rowan County coach Shawn Thacker and staff jokingly called Brown “One-and-Done” due to his tendency to not follow his shot, made or missed, last season. Brown is quickly shaking off that moniker. The big man tallied 16 points and 19 rebounds in the loss to Fleming County.

‰Ashland’s girls are so talented offensively that their defense is somewhat overshadowed. Through the first three games this season, the Kittens were turning teams over about 30 times a contest. On Saturday, they used a slightly different method against archrival Boyd County. They forced only 16 miscues but held the Lady Lions to 33 percent from the field.

‰First Boyd County, then East Carter. The Kittens are certainly going to find out where they stand and if they can surge to another 22-0 tear within the 16th Region, as they did a season ago. With one of two regular-season hurdles cleared against the Lady Lions, the Lady Raiders enter Anderson Gymnasium to challenge Ashland this Friday.

‰East Carter’s girls are coming off a 70-33 thrashing of Fleming County, not exactly a region doormat. The Lady Raiders are showing that competitive fire so much desired by coach Hager Easterling. Megan Stickler and Kelsey Stumbo offer good size both in the post and on the perimeter, respectively, and they have plenty of surrounding pieces. East Carter is the last 16th Region team to beat the Kittens during the regular season — Feb. 18, 2011, at East Carter.

‰Ashland's boys are off to a sizzling start. Unbeaten at 3-0, the Tomcats are coming off a rare defeat of Scott Humphrey-coached George Rogers Clark.

Newcomer Dikembe Dixson and sophomore Nick Miller combined to go 20 of 28 from the floor for 51 points and had 14 rebounds as the team tallied 92 points against the defending 10th Region champions Cardinals.

Ashland might have been happy to play the game at Clark. Humphrey is 16-0 inside Anderson Gymnasium against any opponent.

‰Under Mark Cantrell, Greenup County’s girls have struggled to get going. The Lady Musketeers nabbed that elusive first win, an important one at that, on Saturday. They beat Lewis County, a 63rd District foe.

Now, the PG still has Lewis County ranked in the Super Seven and Greenup County on the fringe. This is partly because of the full body of work and also the fact that Lady Lions point guard Emily Frye has been out.

‰Rowan County senior Taylor Conn notched her 1,000th point in a Lady Vikings win over West Carter on Saturday. The career total includes her time at Lakeside Christian Academy before she transferred to Rowan County prior to last season.

‰They’re five games in, and Fleming County's boys have already consumed a double dose of double OT. As long as they're earning double W’s, the Panthers won't mind.

After shooting 11 of 18, even though his “shot was off” according to Steward himself, in a 67-60 win over Russell (no OT) this past week, the junior wing racked up 28 points in a 79-75 2OT victory over Paducah Tilghman.

‰The first of several holiday tournaments for area teams is a much-anticipated one. Much of it organized by Boyd County girls coach Pete Fraley, the Boyd County Roundball Classic will tip off this Friday night with Boyd County-Huntington St. Joe girls and finish up Saturday night with Boyd County-Mason County boys.

What lies in between? A jam-packed schedule full of college basketball prospects, including those from Walnut Hills High School (Cincinnati), Huntington Prep Academy and Arlington Country Day (Jacksonville, Fla.).

Andrew Wiggins, a 6-foot-8, 200-pound senior forward for Huntington Prep, is one of a possible six Class of 2013 Division I recruits on his team's roster. Kentucky is among those in the hunt for Wiggins.

Johnson Central junior Shane Hall (6-8) will also be featured. He recently received an offer from Tennessee.

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