CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR 2018 KING OF THE BLUEGRASS ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM!!! Bob White Most Valuable Player Kadary Richmond - South Shore
Marcus Fitzgerald - Brentwood Academy Randy Brady - Brentwood Academy Ksuan Casey - Madisonville Ryan Bost - Evanston KyKy Tandy - University Heights Kyle Rode - Lexington Christian Dieonte Miles - Walton-Verona David Johnson - Trinity Walter Johnson Jr. - Ballard Jacob Seawright - Spencer County Isaiah Cozart - Madison Central Dayvion McKnight - Collins Marcellus Vail - Collins Isaiah Richards - South Shore Femi Odukale - South Shore
South Shore (Brooklyn, NY) 2018 King of the Bluegrass Champions
In a matchup of teams making their first appearance in the King of the Bluegrass Championship it was South Shore (Brooklyn, NY) that claimed their first tournament title becoming the fifth out-of-state champion in the last eight years.
Collins got off to a great start with Marcellus Vail connecting on the first of six three-pointers to give the Titans an early 3-0 lead. A putback by Dwight Davis Jr gave South Shore their first lead of the game at 5-3 two minutes into play. A three-pointer by the Vikings' Femi Odukale capped a 12-2 run by South Shore leading 12-5. Sam Edwards only basket of the game came at the perfect time for Collins tying the game at 12-12 with a minute to play in the opening quarter. Kadary Richmond ended the first quarter with three straight points to give South Shore a 15-12 lead at the quarter break. Dayvion McKnight tied the game for Collins on the first posession of the second quarter. A Kareem May basket two minutes later capped an 8-2 run for South Shore to put the Vikings back in control at 23-17. McKnight would get the Titans back on top with six straight points to push Collins ahead 26-25 with three minutes to play in the first half. The Titans would not trail for the remainder of the half with Darrian Crittenden's three-pointer in the final minute extending the Collins lead to 7 points. A last second dunk by South Shore's Davis Jr. would cut the lead to 34-29 at halftime.
The second half opened with five straight points for Davis Jr. and the Vikings as they tied the score at 34-34 less than a minute into the half. It took another two minutes though for the Vikings to take their first lead of the half with back-to-back layups by Richmond putting South Shore ahead 42-38 midway through the third quarter. The Titans wouldn't go away though with Vail connecting on another key three-pointer to tie the game 44-44 with less than two minutes to play in the quarter. A huge block by by Isaiah Richards led to a big dunk by Richmond on the other end putting South Shore back ahead with a 48-44 lead at the end of the third quarter. Collins opened the final quarter with a key spurt started by Darrian Crittenden taking a charge defensively and Vail connecting with another three-pointer. A 7-2 run by the Vikings was highlighted by a Kareem May three-pointer keeping South Shore ahead 55-49 three minutes into the final quarter. A key defensive stretch that held South Shore scoreless for two minutes was backed up by a pair of three-pointers by Vail to Collins their first lead of the quarter at 57-55 with 3:13 remaining in the game. A quick dunk by Richards on the next possession though would pull the score even at 57-57. A three-pointer for Dwight Davis Jr would give South Shore the lead for good at 60-59 with just over a minute remaining in the game. A pair of free throws by Richmond on the Vikings next possession extended the South Shore lead to the final margin of 62-59 with 32.5 seconds remaining. Marcellus Vail missed on a three attempt for Collins on their next possession and South Shore came down with the rebound before a foul on Tyson Turner stopped the clock with 1.9 seconds remaining. A foul on the ensuing in-bound pass sent Richmond to the free throw line with a chance to seal the victory for the Vikings. A miss on the free throw gave the Titans one last chance but a last second attempt by Dayvion McKnight sailed wide left as the clock expired.
Collins was led by Marcellus Vail with a game-high 22 points and Dayvion McKnight added 19 for the Titans. Both Vail and McKnight earned All-Tournament Team honors for their performance. South Shore was led by Kadary Richmond with 16 points which was enough to earn Richmond Bob White Most Valuable Player honors. Dwight Davis Jr added 15 points for the Vikings. All-Tournament Team selections Isaiah Richards and Femi Odukale added 9 points and 8 points respectively for South Shore.
In our second semifinal of the night it was South Shore (Brooklyn, NY) that overcame a double-digit halftime deficit to defeat four time King of the Bluegrass Champion Ballard. It was a pair of early turnovers by Ballard that got things going for South Shore who took as early 5-0 lead in the opening minute of play. Ballard tied the game at 7-7 on a three-pointer by Terrence McDaniels but the Vikings stingy defense forced turnovers on each of Ballard's next two possessions to push back ahead 12-7. It was an old-fashion three-point play the Bruins' Rashad Bishop that finally pulled them back even at 17-17 in the final minute of the opening quarter. Three minutes into the second quarter the Ballad run totaled 16-2 as the Bruins were firmly in control at 28-19. A three-pointer by South Shore's Kareem May pulled the Vikings within 8 points but they never got any closer in the first half. A 12-6 spurt for Ballard in the final three minutes sent them to the locker room with a 47-33 lead. South Shore opened the second half on a dominant 15-6 run cutting the Ballard lead to 53-48 four minutes into the third quarter. The Bruins reeled off six straight points including a three-pointer by McDaniels to extend their lead back to double-digits at 59-48. South Shore took complete control of the final 2:30 of the third quarter outscoring Ballard 11-2 to trail just 62-64 entering the fourth quarter. Less than thirty seconds into the final quarter Dante Spencer's three-pointer would give the Vikings a lead they wouldn't relinquish. Midway through the final quarter the Bruins used six straight free throws to tie the game one final time at 70-70. It was a 12-4 South Shore run punctuated by an Anthony Latty dunk in the final seconds that gave the Vikings the 82-74 victory and their first trip to a King of the Bluegrass championship. Ballard was led by Walter Johnson Jr. with 25 points. Terrence McDaniels added 13 points for the Bruins. South Shore was led by Femi Odukale with 16 points, Kadary Richmand with 15 points and Isaiah Richards with 14 points.
No.12 Collins pulls off the shocking upset of No.2 Trinity in our opening semifinal of the night to end the Shamrocks bid for a fourth consecutive tournament championship appearance. It did not take long for the Titans of Collins to get things going in their first ever King of the Bluegrass semifinals with an early steal and basket from Dayvion McKnight giving them their first lead at 4-2. The Titans lead quickly swelled to 14-4 as they held Trinity to just one field goal over the next six minutes. A late basket by Trinity's David Johnson cut the Collins lead to eight at the end of the first quarter. A basket by Collins' Dane Kidwell extended the Titans lead back to 10 points two minutes into the second quarter. An 8-4 run by the Shamrocks cut the lead to 16-22 on a Kolton Rice three-pointer. Seven straight points by Johnson pulled Trinity within 24-28 with two minutes to play in the first half. A Stan Turnier putback in the closing seconds of the half held the Shamrocks within four points at 26-30 at halftime. Despite losing University of Louisville signee Johnson to a knee injury in the opening minute of the second half, Trinity pieced together a 9-2 run to take an early 35-34 second half lead. The Shamrocks lead extended to as many of five points following a Kamari Kenemore bucket with 2:30 remaining in the third quarter. Colby Eades' three-pointer in the final minute of the quarter pulled the Titans even at 40-40. Midway through the fourth quarter Trinity got a pair of free throws from Zach Stahlman to push back ahead 51-47. A pair of quick buckets by Kidwell put Collins back ahead 53-51 with just over three minutes to play. The Shamrocks couldn't shake their offensive woes though as they went nearly five minutes without a field goal watching the Collins lead grow to 58-53. A Jamil Hardaway basket with 9 seconds remaining in play pulled the Shamrocks within a single possession. It was a pair of free throws by Kidwell with six seconds to play that put the game out of reach with Collins claiming the 60-58 victory and advancing to their first King of the Bluegrass championship. Trinity was led by David Johnson's 18 points, all in the first half, and Kolton Rice added 15 for the Shamrocks. Dayvion McKnight led Collins with an outstanding 26 points 11 rebound effort. Dane Kidwell added 12 points for the Titans.
In the final quarterfinal of the 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass it was No.2 Trinity who secured their fourth straight semifinal appearance with an impressive victory over No.11 Lexington Christian. A poor start for Lexington Christian saw the Eagles miss four of their first five shots as Trinity jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the opening minutes of the game. A three-pointer by Lexington Christian's Zeke Grier gave the Eagle some life as they took their first lead of the game at 8-6. As Trinity suffered through their own scoring drought for more than four minutes late in the first quarter the Lexington Christian lead grew to as many as six points. Trinity finally got things going offensively in the final minute of the quarter with Ethan Hodge cutting the Eagles lead to 12-8. Trinity's David Johnson scored the first nine points of the second quarter as the Shamrocks took a 17-12 lead. A Matthew Johnson three-pointer on the next possession got the Eagles within 2 points before Trinity reeled off a 16-4 run to lead 33-19 at halftime. Lexington Christian would never get closer than 14 points in the second half as Trinity outscored the Eagles 40-19. A Goldie Ashford steal and basket in the final minute would give Trinity the 73-38 victory and their largest lead of the game at 35 points. Kyle Rode led the way for Lexington Christian with 16 points and 12 rebounds. University of Louisville signee David Johnson led Trinity with a game-high 20 points and 8 rebounds. Miles Franklin and Kolton Rice each added 10 points for the Shamrocks.
In our third quarterfinal of the night it was No.4 Ballard with a dominant victory over No.13 Walton-Verona to advance to the King of the Bluegrass semifinals for the first time since 2013. Ballard took control of the game from the opening tip jumping out to a quick 5-2 lead a minute into play. A Trey Bonne free throw pulled the game even at 5-5 midway through the opening quarter. Walter Johnson Jr responded for Ballard scoring the final 10 points of the quarter to give the Bruins a 17-10 lead. A Jack Watson three-pointer jump started an 8-1 run for Walton-Verona to cut the Ballard lead to 24-23 with two minutes to play in the first half. The Bearcats couldn't maintain the momentum though as Ballard scored the final six points of the quarter to lead 30-23 at halftime. In the opening two minutes of the second half the Bruins lead grew to as many as 11 points. A steal and basket by Walton-Verona's Kam Pardee pulled the Bearcats within 27-34 midway through the third quarter but they'd never get any closer. Johnson continued his dominance late in the third quarter scoring 9 of the next 14 points for the Bruins who quickly saw their lead grow to 17 points. It was all Walter Johnson Jr again early in the fourth quarter for the Bruins as his quick four-point spurt two minutes into play extended the Ballard lead to a game-high 21 points. A pair of three-pointers by Walton-Verona's Jack Watson helped the Bearcats put together an 8-1 run to get as close as 44-58. The Bruins rebounded and extended their lead back to as many as 18 points on three more occasions as they advanced to the semifinals with the 69-52 victory. Kam Pardee led Walton-Verona in scoring with 14 points. Walter Johnson Jr. led the way for Ballard with a game-high 24 points.
In the second quarterfinal of the evening it was No.12 Collins holding on against No.24 Madisonville to secure their first trip to the King of the Bluegrass semifinals. It was a slow start to the game offensively for both teams before a putback by Collins' Dayvion McKnight gave the Titans a 4-2 lead three minutes into the game. It was McKnight who single handedly outscored Madisonville with nine first quarter points to give Collins a 13-8 lead at the end of the first quarter. The lead grew to 17-8 less than a minute into the second quarter following a steal and basket by McKnight. Kenny White finally got things going for the Maroons in the second quarter cutting the lead to 3 points minutes later. A basket by Madisonville's Cade Cunningham kept things close at 16-19 midway through the second quarter. The Maroons held Collins scoreless for the next four minutes with Cunningham giving Madisonville their first lead of the quarter at 23-22 in the final minute of the half. A buzzer beating three-pointer by Tyson Turner broke the scoreless streak and kept Collins on top 25-23 at the half. An old-fashion three-point play by Madisonville's Keshawn Stone capped a seven point swing to put the Maroons back ahead 30-27 midway through the third quarter. The teams would exchange the lead three times over the final four minutes of the quarter with Caleb Hawley's basket in the final minute giving Collins a 35-33 lead. Five straight points by Stone put the Maroons back in the lead with 3:38 remaining in the game. The teams exchanges the lead five more times over the next two minutes before Marcellus Vail finally put the Titans back in control at 47-45 with less than two minutes to play. Stone got Madisonville as close as one point on the ensuing possession before Collins put the game out of reach with an 8-2 run to close the game. The 55-51 victory sends Collins to the semifinals in just their second tournament appearance. Cade Cunningham led Madisonville in scoring with 13 points and Keshawn Stone added 12 points for the Maroons. Collins' Marcellus Vail led all scorers with 16 points and Dayvion McKnight added 15 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists for the Titans.
The first quarterfinal of the 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass was a battle of out-of-state foes as former champion Brentwood Academy's late run fell short against South Shore. The two teams battled early in the opening quarter with Femi Odukale's five early points giving South Shore the early 7-3 lead. Sophomore Randy Brady scored five of Brentwood Academy's next seven points pulling the Eagles within one point on three different occasions. A three-point basket by Marcus Fitzgerald tied the game at 13-13 with 2:39 remaining in the opening quarter. It was a 10-0 spurt by South Shore to end the quarter with the Vikings leading 23-13. The Viking lead grew to as many as 12 points early in the second quarter before Fitzgerald connected on a pair of three-pointers that led to a 8-0 Brentwood Academy run cutting the lead to 25-21. The South Shore defense came alive in the final four minutes of the half holding Brentwood Academy scoreless while forcing three late turnovers to take a 30-21 lead at the half. The Eagles never got closer than seven points in the third quarter as the stifling South Shore defense converted seven turnovers into 10 points while extending their lead to as many as 18 points. A pair of field goals by South Shore's Kadary Richmond grew the lead to a game-high 20 points two minutes into the final quarter. A late 11-3 run by Brentwood Academy was started by 6 straight points from Marcus Fitzgerald to cut the South Shore lead to 64-56 with a minute remaining in play. A missed free throw by Kareem May in the final minutes gave the Eagles an opportunity with Brady headed to the free throw line in the final 35 seconds. A pair of missed free throws looked to doom Brentwood Academy before an offensive rebound landed in the hands of Adam Wass who connected on a three-pointer to pull the Eagles within 65-59. It was too late though as Odukale connected on the first of two free throws sealing the 66-59 victory for South Shore. Brentwood Academy was led by Marcus Fitzgerald and Randy Brady with 27 and 22 points respectively. South Shore had a trio of players in double digits including Isaiah Richards (16pts), Kadary Richmond (15pts), and Femi Odukale (14pts).
In the final first round contest of the 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass it was No.11 Lexington Christian that was dominant against No.7 University Heights. Lexington Christian got off to a great start jumping out to an early 7-2 lead. The Blazers rebounded with a run of their own holding the Eagles scoreless for nearly four minutes as they University Heights took a 9-7 lead. The teams would exchange the lead four times in the final three minutes of the quarter with a pair of free throws by Kyle Rode giving Lexington Christian the 12-11 lead at the quarter break. Stout defense by the Eagles would force 10 straight missed baskets for University Heights as the Lexington Christian lead grew to as many as 15 points with two minutes to play in the first half. A pair of late baskets by Xavier signee KyKy Tandy cut the Lexington Christian lead to 26-16 at halftime. Drew McGowan pulled University Heights within 9 points on two seperate occasions in the opening four minutes of the second half but the Blazers got six straight points from Rode midway through the quarter to keep their lead comfortably at 13 points. The Eagles took a 46-33 lead into the final quarter but couldn't stop a final surge from the Blazers to cut their lead to 49-44 with five minutes to play in the game. A basket by Tandy held University Heights within five points before Lexington Christian constructed a late 12-5 run to clinch the victory 63-51 and advance to the quarterfinals. KyKy Tandy led the way for the Blazers finishing with 19 points. Lexington Christian was led by Kyle Rode with an outstanding 27 point, 15 rebound and 5 assist performance. Will Hacker added 13 points for the Eagles.
The third game of the evening saw 24th ranked Madisonville advance to the quarterfinals after escaping with a victory over host Fairdale. The opening three minutes of play were were packed with action as the teams swapped the lead four times with Fairdale's Stephen Moore scoring the first six points for the Bulldogs. A free throw by Moore gave Fairdale their largest lead of the opening quarter at 6-4. Madisonville's Kenny White and Keshawn Stone combined for eight of the next ten points as the Maroons took control with a 14-6 lead. The Bulldogs fought back to cut the lead to three points twice in the first three minutes of the second quarter. A pair of three-pointers by Stone were key in an 8-3 run for the Maroons to extend the lead to 24-16. A quick spurt by the Bulldogs saw them cut the lead back to three following a three-pointer by Isaac Tedford with three minutes to play in the half. The Madisonville defense held the Bulldogs to just one basket for the rest of the half as they led 33-25 going into the locker room. The third quarter opened with a 13-5 Madisonville run that gave the Maroons a game-high 16 point lead three minutes into the second half. Tedford gave the Bulldogs life just minutes later connecting on three long range baskets to cut the Madisonville lead to 48-42. Fairdale just couldn't maintain the momentum as the Maroons lead quickly grew back to 12 points in the opening seconds of the fourth quarter. The Bulldog's defense forced four quick Madisonville turnovers to as the cut the lead to four points on two different occasions midway through the final quarter. Fairdale was plagued by missed baskets in the final four minutes of play missing six straight baskets as Madisonville pushed back ahead 63-52. The Maroons advanced to the quarterfinals with a 67-56 victory. Fairdale was led by Stephen Moore with 15 points and Isaac Tedford with 12 points. Madisonville was led by Keshawn Stone with a game-high 25 points and Kenny White and Ksuan Casey each added a double-double for the Maroons.
In the second game of the evening it was South Shore (Brooklyn, NY) that used a fourth quarter surge to overcome the Wildkits of Evanston Township (Evanston, IL). The Vikings got off to a hot start behind Kadary Richmond, who scored eight points in the opening three minutes of play to give South Shore a 14-5 lead. Five straight points by Evanston's Ryan Bost helped the Wildkits pull within 18-20 with two minutes to play in the opening quarter. Richmond's hot hand continued as he added the final five points of the quarter for South Shore as the Vikings led 28-24. Two minutes into the second quarter a three-pointer by Blake Peters gave Evanston their first lead since 3-2. The Wildkits continued their success from beyond the arc with a pair a three-point baskets by Bost to hold onto the lead 38-37 midway through the quarter. Jaheim Holden's basket with two minutes to play in the half capped a 10-2 Evanston run to extend their lead to five points. The Wildkits held onto a 44-40 lead at halftime. South Shore opened the second half by cutting the Evanston lead to a 2 at 47-49 before the Wildkits reeled off an 8-2 run to push their lead back to eight points. It was the South Shore defense that stepped up late in the third quarter holding Evanston to just three baskets in the final five minutes of the quarter. Dwight Davis Jr's basket following a double technical foul gave South Shore their first lead of the half at 63-61 with a minute remaining in the quarter. The teams would find themselves knotted up three more times over the next three minutes before Kadary Richmond's three-pointer capped a 12-2 South Shore run to charge ahead 79-69. The Wildkits would never get closer than seven points in the final three minutes of play with South Shore claiming the 87-76 victory. Evanston was led by Ryan Bost with 27 points. Lance Jones added 15 points for the Wildkits. Kadary Richmond led South Shore with a game-high 29 points and Kareem May added 19 points.
Our opening game of action saw 2015 King of the Bluegrass Champion Brentwood Academy (Brentwood, TN) advance to the quarterfinals over South Miami (Miami, FL). The Eagles of Brentwood Academy cruised out to an early 14-4 lead looking firmly in control of the game. The Cobras regained their composure quickly though as Jeffrey Bujan added five straight points to help fuel a 10-0 run to tie the game at 14-14 with a minute to play in the opening quarter. A Lee Flenor three-pointer gave South Miami their first lead of the game on the opening possession of the second quarter. A trio of three-point baskets by the Cobra's Iann Segura extended the South Miami lead to 30-21 midway though the second quarter. Stifling defense by South Miami held Brentwood Academy scored just three points in the final five minutes of the first half as the Cobras led 34-24 at the break. The South Miami lead grew to a game-high 13 points on their opening possession of the third quarter. Brentwood Academy didn't go away though as the Eagles pieced together a 13-0 run to tie the game at 40-40 with two minutes to play in the quarter. Brentwood Academy took their first lead of the second half on a Randy Brady putback less than a minute later. A technical foul of South Miami's Flenor resulted in a four point swing that extended the Eagles lead to 52-44 with 5:46 remaining in the game. South Miami used a strong inside game to help them cut the lead to 51-56 following Toru Dean's putback with three minutes to play. An old-fashion three-point play by Dean helped the Cobras hold the lead at 60-55 with two minutes to play before Brentwood Academy reeled off eight straight points to take a game-high 13 point lead with less than a minute to play. The Eagles moved to 5-0 all-time in tournament play and advanced to the quarterfinals with the 70-58 victory. South Miami was led by Lee Flenor with 16 points and 8 rebounds. Toru Dean and Iann Segura added 14 points and 12 points respectively for the Cobras. Brentwood Academy was led by Randy Brady with a game-high 22 points. Marcus Fitzgerald added a double-double for the Eagles with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
The final game of opening night got off to an interesting start as both Spencer County and No.4 Ballard showed up in white uniforms. As the visiting team on the bracket Spencer County had to borrow jerseys from host Fairdale to wear for the game. Once the action got underway it was Ballard who jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead in the opening minute of play. Spencer County rallied to reel off 7 straight points jumping ahead 7-4 on a Sam Conley three-pointer. A steal and basket by Ballard's Isaac Womack put the Bruins back ahead at 8-7. The Bruins never trailed for the remainder of the first half after a 6-0 run gave them ta 16-10 lead at the quarter break. Two minutes into the second quarter the Ballard lead extended to double-digits at 23-12 following a Josh Minkins layup. Spencer County's Jacob Seawright converted an old-fashion three-point play to cap an 11-3 Bears run to pull within 23-26 midway through the quarter. Seawright and Womack exchanged three-pointers before a Ballard 5 point spurt cushioned the Bruins lead at 34-26. Four straight free throws by Spencer County's Lucas Hornback cut the Ballard lead to 36-33 with less than 30 seconds to play. Ballard's Rashad Bishop was assessed a technical foul following a dunk with 2 seconds to play sending Seawright to the free throw line. The Bears connected on both free throws but Seawright missed on a last second attempt to tie the game before the half. It was the Bruins who found themselves on the beneficial end of a 10-1 run pushing their lead to 54-42 midway through the third quarter. The Bears just would give up though as Jackson Cole connected on a three-pointer in the closing minute of the third quarter as part of a 7-2 run to cut the Ballard lead to 61-53. Just as it looked like the Bears may make a final run Ballard pieced together an 8-0 run to extend their lead to a game-high 18 points at 74-56 with three minutes remaining in the game. Jacob Seawright scored nine of the next eleven points for Spencer County as they made one last run to cut the lead to 76-67 with a minute and a half to play. Seawright added four more in the final minute but couldn't get any closer as the Bears fell 71-80 to the fourth ranked Bruins. Spencer County's Jacob Seawright led all scorers with 31 points and Sam Conley added 20 for the Bears. Walter Johnson Jr. led the scoring for Ballard with a 21 point and 11 rebound double-double. Josh Minkins Jr. also added a double-double for the Bruins with 12 points and 13 rebounds.
The 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass saw it's second upset of the tournament as No.13 Walton-Verona used a second-half surge to roll past No. 5 Madison Central in the opening round of action. A back-and-forth opening quarter of play saw the Indians and Bearcats exchange the lead six times throughout the opening eight minutes of play. It was the strong inside presence of Madison Central's Isaiah Cozart with a pair of dunks that helped the Indians take a 14-13 lead at the end of the opening quarter. The Bearcats took control early in the second quarter of action with a 11-0 run to push ahead 24-16. It was Cozart with four points and five rebounds in the final minutes of the half that pulled Madison Central back within 22-26 at halftime. A three-pointer by Madison Central's Kole Brown pulled the Indians within one point, but Walton-Verona's Trey Bonne and Kam Pardee combined for 12 points in the third quarter to keep the Bearcats ahead. A Garrett Jones three-pointer with less than two minutes to play in the quarter extended the Walton-Verona lead to 41-33. It was Jones with an old-fashion three-point play that gave the Bearcats their first double-digit lead of the game at 45-35 seconds into the final quarter. Quae Charlton scored four straight for the Indians to pull them within six points, but they'd never get any closer. A Dieonte Miles three-pointer capped an 11-2 run by Walton-Verona to put the game out of reach as the lead grew to a game-high 15 points at 56-41. A late three-pointer by Madison Central's Charlton cut the final score to 62-50. Madison Central was led by Western Kentucky signee Isaiah Cozart with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Kole Brown and Quae Charlton each added 11 points for the Indians. Walton-Verona's Kam Pardee led all scorers with a game-high 16 points and Garrett Jones added 14.
The Shamrocks of No. 2 Trinity got off to a hot start in their pursuit of a fourth straight trip to the King of the Bluegrass Championships. The Shamrocks were dominant in the match up with the 16th ranked Hawks of LaRue County. The opening four minutes of play were all Trinity as the jumped out to a 12-0 lead midway through the first quarter. The Hawks cut the Trinity lead to as few as 7 points in the closing minutes of the quarter, but never got any closer. Trinity got eight straight points from Stan Turnier midway through the second quarter to close a 12-2 Shamrock run and send Trinity to the locker room with a 32-16 lead. The third quarter was much of the same as Trinity remained firmly in control. A trio of free throws by LaRue County's Jeremiah Belton helped jump start a LaRue County run that would cut the lead to 43-32 less than a minute into the fourth quarter. An emphatic dunk capped a five point spurt by University of Louisville signee David Johnson to push Trinity's lead to 20 points with three minutes remaining in the game. A basket in the closing seconds by Trinity's Ethan Hodge pushed the final margin of victory to a game high 21 points at 67-46. LaRue County was led by senior Dailliss Cox with 14 points and highly touted junior Mark Goode added 7 points and 12 rebounds for the Hawks. Trinity was led by seniors Stan Turnier with a game-high 17 points and Jamil Hardaway with 16 points.
In the opening game of the 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass it was No.12 Collins pulling off the upset over No.9 Male. The Titans, favorites in the eight region, took a 5-0 lead in the opening two minutes of play and never looked back. Marcellus Vail led the way for Collins with eight first quarter points as the Titans led 14-9 at the quarter break. A 13-2 run for the Titans extended their lead to 27-11 in the opening minutes of the second quarter. An 8-2 burst for the Bulldogs got them as close as ten points midway through the quarter. Collins took a 41-28 lead into the locker room at half time. A quick start to the half pushed Collins back ahead 50-32 for their largest lead of the game. Male closed the third quarter on an 11-2 run to cut the Titans lead to 11 points at 56-45. A pair of free throws by Male's Tyren Moore cut the lead to single digits at 57-66 midway through the final quarter. Collins' Vail closed things out for the Titans with six late points pushing the final margin to 77-66. Male was led by Cameron Pope and Noah Courtney with 16 points apiece. Marcellus Vail led Collins with a game-high 24 points and Dayvion McKnight added a double-double with 23 points and 13 rebounds.
The 38th Annual Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass will
once again feature a field loaded with talent from across the Bluegrass state
and the country. Half of the Courier-Journal’s Kentucky Preseason Top 10 teams
will compete for the prestigious title. The event which annually hosts the
Kentucky’s top high school basketball teams features ten teams ranked in the
Top 25 in the state, including regional favorites from the second, fifth,
seventh and eighth regions. There’s plenty of individual talent as well with
five of the state’s top 10 players competing in the event. This year’s field
also includes six former King of the Bluegrass Champions. Former champions
Ballard, Brentwood Academy, Fairdale, Madison Central, Male and Trinity have combined
to capture 14 King of the Bluegrass titles
The 2018 Chad Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass will open
with a four-game slate on Wednesday. Former King of the Bluegrass Champion and
9th ranked Male will open play against the 12th ranked Collins. The Bulldogs,
making their first tournament appearance since 2010, are led by the junior duo
of Howard Fleming and Tyren Moore. The eighth region favorite, Titans, are led
by 6’1” guard Dayvion McKnight, one of the state’s top ranked juniors. In the
second game of theday, the 2nd ranked Shamrocks
of Trinity will take on16th ranked LaRue County. The Shamrocks, ranked 78th in
the country by MaxPreps and the favorite in the seventh region, are led by
University of Louisville signee and Mr. Basketball front-runner David Johnson.
Trinity will be looking to make their fourth straight trip to the KOB
championship. The Hawks, the favorite in the fifth region, are led by the trio
of TreVon Smith, Mark Goode and Anthony Adkins. The 7:30 game on opening night
will feature 5th ranked Madison Central taking on 13th ranked Walton-Verona in
a match-up of two of the state’s top seniors. The Indians, making their first
tournament appearance since 2012, are coming off a 25-8 finish last season and
were picked to finish second in a loaded 11th region. They are led by 6’8”
Western Kentucky signee Isaiah Cozart, the state’s fifth ranked player.
Walton-Verona, who finished last season with a 26-6 record and a Runner-up
finish at the Kentucky All A Classic, is led by 6’11” Xavier signee Dieonte
Miles. The final game of the evening will feature Kentucky’s 4th ranked Bruins
of Ballard taking on unranked Spencer County. The Bruins, who hold the record
for the most wins in tournament history at 56, return a talented roster led by
the senior duo of Walter Johnson and Alexander Holley. The Bears, making their
first ever King of the Bluegrass appearance, are coming off a 20-8 finish last
year and are led by 6’2” sophomore Sam Conley.
Thursday’s first round action opens with a pair of stellar
out-of-state match-ups. In the opener it will be 2015 King of the Bluegrass
Champion Brentwood Academy of Nashville, TN taking on South Miami of Miami, FL.
The Eagles of Brentwood Academy finished last season with a 25-5 record capturing
their fourth straight Tennessee Division II Class AA State Championship. The
former champions are led by junior guard Marcus Fitzgerald and Randy Brady, the
nation’s 19th ranked sophomore. The Cobras come into the event ranked 4th in
Florida’s Class 9A and are coming off a 20-5 record advancing to the state
quarterfinals last season. South Miami is led by Barry University signee Toru
Dean.The second match-up of the day
features South Shore of Brooklyn, NY taking on Evanston of Evanston, IL. The
Vikings of South Shore, ranked 71st in the country by MaxPreps, are coming off
a New York Class AA State Runner-up finish. South Shore is led by 6’9” Florida
International commit Isaiah Richards. The Wildkits are coming off a 27-6 record
and 3rd place finish in Illinois’ Class 4A last season. Evanston is led by
senior guards Lance Jones, a Southern Illinois signee, and Jaheim Holden.
Thursday’s 7:30 game will feature the host Fairdale Bulldogs taking on 24th ranked
Madisonville-North Hopkins. Fairdale is coming off their first 20-win season
since 2007-08 and is led by junior Tristan Bertrand. The Maroons will be led by
juniors Kenny White and Ksuan Casey. The final first round match-up will
feature 7th ranked University Heights and 11th ranked Lexington Christian. The
Blazers of University Heights, favorites in the second region, are led by
Xavier signee and Mr. Basketball contender KyKy Tandy. Lexington Christian, the
defending Kentucky All A State Champion, is led by 6’7” Liberty signee Kyle
The 2018 Gardner Law King of the Bluegrass will continue
with the quarterfinal round beginning at 4:30pm Friday with all 16 teams in
action. All 16 teams will return to the courts on Saturday for a full slate of
games beginning at 4:30pm with the semifinals scheduled at 7:30 and 9:00pm. The
final day of action will tip off at 3:00pm on Sunday with the Championship game
scheduled for 7:30pm.