Mickey Wells, the winningest women's basketball coach in Morehead State history, died Monday at age 79.

The Eagles went 156-91 under Wells from 1975-84. Morehead State was 40-23 in Ohio Valley Conference play and won three league titles during that time. That includes a 28-4 record in 1978-79, which included 15 straight wins. Both of those achievements still stand as the best in program history.

Wells was inducted into the Morehead State Athletic Hall of Fame in 1995. His son, Kelly, went on to win a national title coaching the University of Pikeville's men and a state crown leading Mason County's boys. He is now UPike's athletic director.

"Mickey Wells set the tone for all the future successes of our women's basketball program," Morehead State athletic director Jaime Gordon said in a release. "In the early days of OVC women's basketball, his guidance led Morehead State to be an elite program. He had continued to be a loyal fan of all our teams and student-athletes and a cherished member of the Morehead community."

Hensley Making a Racket

Kierstin Hensley wasted no time making an impact on Shawnee State's women's tennis program.

The Russell alumna, in her first year as a Bear competing as a graduate transfer, is the Mid-South Conference Women's Tennis Player of the Week.

Hensley posted big wins at No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles in Shawnee State's victory over Mount Vernon Nazarene on Saturday.

Hensley is ranked as the No. 4 player in the NAIA's East Region and the No. 15 performer in the nation.

Pennington Making a Splash

Kenzie Pennington collected third-team all-Mid-South Conference swimming honors by virtue of a third-place finish in the women's 200-yard breaststroke at the conference championship meet on Saturday night in Kingsport, Tennessee.

The Ashland graduate recorded a 2:28.96 in the event, which topped her previous personal best by 10.26 seconds -- a veritable eternity in swimming.

Thornburg On the Run

Mary Alice Thornburg came in ninth in the Murray State Open for Morehead State's cross country team on Friday.

Thornburg, a sophomore, finished the course in 19:55.14 as the Eagles won the seven-team meet.

Isabella Copher, a Bath County product, was 17th for Morehead State in 20:30.31.

Cross country, typically contested in the fall, was postponed to the spring as a coronavirus-related measure.

Thornburg had previously finished third and Copher fifth in a dual 4K meet with Eastern Kentucky on Jan. 23.

Howard Gaining Speed

East Tennessee State's Bekah Howard posted her career best in the mile run in an indoor track meet on Sunday.

Howard's 1,600 of 5:25.41 was second overall, just 41 100ths of a second behind teammate and pacesetter Kiera Snyder.

Howard is an Ashland graduate.

Cross Flies High

Toledo freshman Promise Cross won the high jump at the Bowling Green State University Dual on Jan. 22, recording a mark of 1.62 meters.

Cross was third in the high jump on Saturday, leaping 1.60 meters at Central Michigan's Jack Skoog Invitational. That actually tied for the top mark, but Cross was awarded third based on the number of scratches.

Cross is a Rowan County alumna.

Perry Pulling Away

Bowling Green sophomore Kailee Perry ran the fifth-fastest mile in Falcons history to win the event in 4:53.78 Central Michigan's Jack Skoog Invitational.

That is the fastest time in the Mid-American Conference this year. Perry is among the top 60 in the country in the mile.

Perry is a Morgan County product.

Local Flavor in


West Virginia's football program is building quite a colony of northeastern Kentucky expatriates.

ShaDon Brown, Rowan County's coach from 2008-10, is joining the Mountaineers as a defensive assistant coach. His exact title and responsibilities are yet to be announced.

Brown heads to Morgantown from Louisville, where he coached the Cardinals safeties the last two seasons. Brown had previously coached at Colorado, Army, Wofford, Cumberlands and Campbellsville.

Lawrence County alumni Gerad Parker and Dontae Wright are also assistant coaches at West Virginia. Parker shares offensive coordinator responsibilities and coaches receivers. Wright leads the safeties.

Reach ZACK KLEMME at zklemme@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2658. Follow @zklemmeADI on Twitter.

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