Boys Hoops: New Cath, Beechwood Advance in All A Classic; Holmes Crushed at Mason
The two quarterfinal games of the Ninth Region All A Classic tournament played at Holy Cross High School proved to both be blowouts, one of monumental proportions.
Beechwood 56, Bellevue 34
In the first game, Beechwood pulled away in the second half to beat Bellevue, 56-34.
Bellevue started things out well, hitting a three-pointer in their first possession, but in what would become a theme, senior guard Jacob Huff answered with his own three. He then hit another one on their next possession, giving Beechwood a lead they would possess throughout. Huff is a big guard with a good shooting touch and a gritty chip on his shoulder. He rebounds well and knows how to find his spots on the floor. He finished with a game-high 22 points on the evening in the win.
After the first quarter, and down 16-10, Bellevue really dried up from the field, only able to score seven more points on the quarter. They were also getting beaten badly on the glass, unable to secure any kind of second-chance opportunities, while Beechwood began to pull away with the three-pointer.
The second half was somehow even worse for Bellevue as they allowed Beechwood to form a 17-1 run in between the third and fourth quarters with Huff scoring 13 second-half points. By the time Bellevue could settle things down, the score had grown out of hand and their run in the All A Classic was over.
Beechwood improves to 8-7 and will play Newport Central Catholic on Friday at 6 p.m. at Holy Cross High School in the tournament's semifinal round.
Newport Central Catholic 82, Heritage 25
The second game was even uglier as the high-powered New Cath Thoroughbreds sped past Heritage in the other quarterfinal game of the evening. Even before the tip, anyone could notice the stark height advantage NCC had over the Eagles and once the action got started, it was basically already over.
Heritage from the get-go was not able to find quality shots against the New Cath defense, throwing the ball away carelessly and being rushed into poor turnovers. Each time the Breds got the ball, they would pass the ball down court to an open player who scored an easy lay-up over and over and over again. In what seemed like a flash, senior forward Drew McDonald had 10 points, junior forward Ben Weyer had 7, and the Thoroughbreds found themselves up 24 points in the first quarter.
New Cath head coach Ron Dawn took his starters out after only five game minutes of playing time. Heritage was unable to score a single point in the first quarter and the period ended with the score 29-0. Needless to say, the rest of the game became an exercise for Coach Dawn and gave all of his reserves ample playing time in the blowout. The Breds made similar mincemeat out of Villa Madonna the night before, beating them 84-29. Both wins come after their tough loss to Covington Catholic last week at The Bank of Kentucky Center. New Cath is 13-3 and plays Beechwood on Friday night against Beechwood in one of the two semifinal games that evening at Holy Cross.
Mason County 70, Holmes 46
Holmes had its 11-game win streak snapped on Tuesday night at Mason County with a resounding loss on the road. The Bulldogs shot the ball very poorly, totaling a 33 percent performance from the floor with their best shooter, senior guard James Bolden going 1-10 from beyond the arc on the evening. Bolden still finished with a team-high 12 points. Add in junior guard Markel McClendon missing on all five of his long-range attempts and you've created the perfect combination for a Bulldogs loss. Holmes had a bad shooting night all around, even struggling from the charity stripe, making only 8-18 free-throws.
The Bulldogs (15-4) need to shake off their shooting woes soon as they face Covington Catholic at The Bank of Kentucky Center on Fridaynight.
Covington Catholic 77, Conner 63
In a game that was close and competitive in the first half, the Colonels put the clamps on the Cougars and limited them to only seven points in the third quarter. The advantage during that period was all the head coach Scott Ruthsatz's team needed as they propelled forward for their third win a row.
The Conner combination of Jared Barnes, who had 29 points, and Michael Scott who had 15, was impressive enough, but they were outdone by Cov Cath senior forward Bo Schuh and sophomore guard Cole VonHandorf who finished with 28 and 19 respectively. It was a season-high for Schuh who also had 14 rebounds and four blocks on the night. The Colonels out together 43 points in the second half.
Cov Cath (14-4) gets ready to take on Holmes at the Bank of Kentucky Center on Friday night.
Written by Bryan Burke, associate editor