Friday, November 15, 2013

Kentucky High-school Football, Second Round of Playoffs

I was up at the Madisonville Community College library yesterday, and I checked out a book called Kentucky Transportation. It came out in 1992, and I think it was published by the state transportation cabinet, but it has four of those official welcome-to-the-book letters with the signatures of important people--one each from the governor (Brereton C. Jones at the time), the transportation secretary (Don C. Kelly), UK's president (Charles T. Wethington Jr.) and the director of the Kentucky Transportation Center (Calvin G. Grayson). So this book is really, really an official deal. Its tagline, on the cover, is, in (almost) all capital letters:

A 200 YEAR CALENDAR OF HISTORY--1792 to 1992

And its first sentence is, "Kentucky has always been a State of Transportation." That's not in all capital letters, but, even still, you know a book's going to be a big, official deal when it opens with a sentence like that one. 

For this week's preview of the second round of the KHSAA-football playoffs, I'm just going to hurry up and type in all the games and post this, and then it seems like it will be fun to read at this book in context of thinking about all of these places and these games. I don't know. We'll see. Anyway, I'll just put whatever I learn from this book in the comments over today and the weekend. 

And you thought all I did was sit around watching Trapper John, M.D. reruns.

Louisville Holy Cross (6-5) at Mayfield (10-1, No. 1 in the most recent Associated Press poll for Class A, defending state champion)

Russellville (8-2, No. 3) at Bardstown Bethlehem (10-1, No. 9)

Bellevue (7-4) at Frankfort (8-3, No. 7)

Paris (9-2) at Fort Mitchell Beechwood (7-4, No. 5)

Pineville (7-4) at Williamsburg (8-2, No. 10)

Campbellsville (4-7) at Hazard (10-1, No. 6)

Paintsville (8-3) at Raceland (9-2, No. 4)

Allen Central (2-8) at Pikeville (10-1, No. 2)

Union County (9-2, No. 8) at Caldwell County (11-0, No. 1)--Way back on Aug. 31, the Union County Braves lost to the Caldwell County Tigers, 57-20, in the Kentucky National Guard Warrior Bowl in Marion. Since then, the Braves have won nine of 10--the only loss being 27-26 at Owensboro Catholic on Oct. 18. Last week, Union whipped Barlow Ballard Memorial by 42-7. Now they get what Michael Stinson in Henderson's Gleaner called "roughly the equivalent of a rematch with a grizzly bear.Union coach Steve Carter told Dan Schumerth with The Union County Advocate that his primary emphasis is eliminating a series of special-teams mistakes that plagued the Braves in the August game with the Tigers in Marion. Caldwell is the defending state runnerup for Class 2A, and the headline in Princeton's Times Leader on the game story after the first-round, 55-6 win over Hancock County read, "NEXT!" This is my fan-bus road trip of the week.

Murray (7-4) at Owensboro Catholic (9-2, No. 5)

Louisville DeSales (10-1, No. 3) at Glasgow (10-1, No. 4)

Bardstown (9-2, No. 7) at Christian Academy-Louisville (9-1, No. 2)

Carroll County (6-5) at Gallatin County (9-2)

Walton-Verona (9-2) at Newport Catholic Central (7-4, No. 6, defending state champs)

Somerset (6-4) at Middlesboro (9-2, No. 9)

Danville (6-5) at Prestonsburg (6-5)

Monroe County (8-3) at Paducah Tilghman (6-5, No. 9)

Fort Campbell (5-6) at Bowling Green South Warren (10-1, T4)

Bell County (7-4) at Louisville Central (8-3, T4, defending state champs)

Corbin (9-2, No. 7) at Wayne County (11-0, No. 1)

Russell (7-4) at Bourbon County (11-0, No. 3)

Garrard County (7-4) at Mason County (11-0, No. 6)

Pikeville Pike County Central (6-5) at Breathitt County (7-4)

Lawrence County (8-3) at Belfry (10-1, No. 2)

Class 4A

Bowling Green Warren East (7-4) at Owensboro (8-3, No. 8)

Madisonville-North Hopkins (6-5) at Franklin-Simpson (7-4)

Nelson County (8-3) at Shelbyville Martha Layne Collins (9-2, No. 5)

North Oldham (8-3) at Louisville Western (6-5)

Mercer County (7-4) at Boyle County (11-0, No. 2)

Lexington Catholic (8-3, No. 6) at Russell County (10-1, No. 7)

Ashland Blazer (8-3) at Fort Thomas Highlands (10-1, No. 1, defending state champs)

Covington Catholic (9-2, No. 4) at Paintsville Johnson Central (11-0, No. 3)

Class 5A

Bowling Green Warren Central (6-5) at Graves County (9-2, No. 10)

Christian County (5-6) at Bowling Green (10-0, No. 1, defending state champs)

Shelby County (6-4) at Elizabethtown John Hardin (9-2, No. 3)

Grayson County (5-6) at Bullitt East (10-1, No. 8)

Franklin County (10-1, No. 6) at South Oldham (8-3)

Hebron Conner (8-3) at Anderson County (9-2, No. 5)

Hazard Perry County Central (6-5) at Pulaski County (11-0, No. 2)

Berea Madison Southern (9-2, No. 4) at Harlan County (8-3, No. 7)

Cecilia Central Hardin (10-1, No. 8) at McCracken County (9-2, No. 7)--Coach Orville J has been trying to win a state championship for a long, long time.

Henderson County (9-2) at Meade County (9-2, No. 9)

Campbell County (8-3) at Louisville Butler (9-2)

Edgewood Dixie Heights (8-3) at Independence Simon Kenton (11-0, No. 3)

Louisville Manual (9-2, No. 4) at Louisville Trinity (5-5, No. 5, defending state champs)

Louisville Saint Xavier (7-4, No. 6) at Louisville Male (10-1, No. 2)

Lexington Bryan Station (5-5) at Scott County (11-0, No. 1)

Lexington Paul Laurence Dunbar (6-5) at Lexington Henry Clay (8-2, No. 10)

Previous reports:

-- 2012 wrap;

-- Week 10 roundup and GoHeath's western-Kentucky wrap, standings and lookahead to the first round of the playoffs;

-- first-round roundup and GoHeath's western-Kentucky wrap and lookahead to the second round.


  1. Hey, in Class A, Pikeville and Allen Central played last night--Pikeville won, 49-14.

  2. I'd like to know more about how songs are picked for radio stations. Mayfield and Maysville both have these AM stations that play old pop songs, and there's a good bit of overlap--Maysville's WFTM just played "You're the One That I Want," and this song was on Mayfield's WYMC just a couple of hours ago. But I really don't think you'd ever hear "I've Never Been to Me" on the Maysville station, and I don't think I've ever heard "Smokin' in the Boys Room" on the Mayfield. It played in Maysville immediately before the Grease song.

  3. Maysville right now: "Magic Man" by Heart.

    Mayfield: "Roses Are Red, My Love" by ... hmmm ... don't remember ...

  4. Mayfield: "The Watusi."

    Maysville: "Play That Funky Music, White Boy."

  5. In the Class A tournament, Frankfort last night beat Bellevue by 24-14. That 10-point margin is the closest of the 23 games thus far, with the second-closest being a 25-point decision in Round 1. The final eight teams were all ranked in the last AP poll of the season. Only No. 8 Fairview, which was disqualified from competition before the tournament began, and No. 9 Bethlehem, which lost, 50-14, to No. 3 Russellville last night, from the top 10 have been eliminated. Here are next Friday's games:

    Russellville (10-2, No. 3) at Mayfield (11-1, No. 1)
    Fort Mitchell Beechwood (8-4, No. 5) at Frankfort (10-2, No. 7)
    Hazard (11-1, No. 6) at Williamsburg (9-2, No. 10)
    Pikeville (11-1, No. 2) at Raceland (10-2, No. 4)

    1. Poor old Russellville. But at least they get two shots at Mayfield. When I was at Heath, we only got one shot.

  6. We've got a fantastic tournament underway in Class 2A.

    We had four close games among eight good teams in the upper half of the bracket last night ...

  7. Playing at home, No. 1 Caldwell County opened a 21-6 lead, only to see it whittled to two points by half as No. 8 Union County's punt team once pinned the Tigers at their own 2 and later snuffed a Caldwell punt before it ever started. Todd Griffin of Princeton's Times-Leader Tweeted at the half that it felt like Caldwell was behind, and, indeed, a few minutes into the second half they were--after holding the Tigers on the opening possession of the third quarter, Union struck with a 49-yard touchdown pass to take a 26-21 lead. But in the next two minutes of game time, Caldwell's miraculously named junior quarterback, Elijah Sindelar, threw for touchdown passes of 65 and 11 yards sandwiched around a blocked Braves punt. Caldwell went on to win, 56-34.

    1. I knew this would be an entertaining game. I really respect Union County.

  8. On the game's opening play from scrimmage at No. 5 Owensboro Catholic, a Murray defender stripped the ball from a runner and raced for a Tiger touchdown. Murray extended its lead to 17-7 by half. But with 5:06 to go, OweCath lined up for a field goal that would've tied the game at 23. Instead, the Tigers blocked the kick and returned it for a touchdown. With about a minute to play, the home-standing Aces were finished off with an interception, and Cole Claybourn of Owensboro's Messenger-Inquirer pointed out in a Tweet that Murray's "DesJahvanni Miles, who returned the blocked field goal for a score, got the pick and takes it in." The final score was 37-20.

    1. That's a huge win for Murray; I had them losing that game.

  9. At home, No. 4 Glasgow tied the game at 21 in the third quarter on a 92-yard touchdown run, took a 28-21 lead with 9:05 to play in the game and then recovered a fumble three plays later. But No. 3 Louisville DeSales prevailed, as Nathan Roush scored on two quarterback sneaks. Here's a fantastic photograph from after the game by Jeff Brown in the Glasgow Daily Times.

  10. At No. 2 Christian Academy of Louisville, No. 7 Bardstown led 12-0 early and then 18-7 at the half. With 41 seconds to play in the third quarter, CAL took its first lead on a 37-yard touchdown pass, but the Centurions missed the extra point to make the score, 19-18. Bardstown tried to convert a fourth-and-11 midway through the fourth quarter, but a pass was returned 70 yards to set up another CAL touchdown and produce the final score, 26-18.

  11. The bottom half of the 2A bracket lacks the firepower, but there are some interesting stories down here, too. For one, the defending state champ, No. 6 Newport Central Catholic, pitched the only shutout of this tournament's second round, 36-0 over Walton-Verona. For another, unranked Somerset went to overtime to win, 19-13, at No. 9 Middlesboro--a week after it went to No. 10 Betsy Layne and won, 29-20.

  12. So, next week's 2A regional championships pit:

    Murray (8-4) at Caldwell County (12-0, No. 1)
    Louisville DeSales (11-1, No. 3) at Christian Academy of Louisville (10-1, No. 2)
    Newport Central Catholic (8-4, No. 6, defending state champ) at Gallatin County (10-2)
    Somerset (7-4) at Prestonsburg (7-5)

  13. On its way to the Class 3A state championship last season, Louisville Central beat Bell County, 14-10, for the Region 2 title. Last night in the regional semis, Central beat Bell, 14-11. That was the closest of the second-round games in the 3A tournament. Here are next week's games:

    Bowling Green South Warren (11-1, T4) at Paducah Tilghman (7-5, No. 9)
    Wayne County (12-0, No. 1) at Louisville Central (9-3, T4, defending state champ)
    Mason County (12-0, No. 6) at Bourbon County (12-0, No. 3)
    Pike County Central (7-5) at Belfry (11-1, No. 2)

    1. I think whoever wins between South Warren and Central will go all the way.

  14. The Class 4A tournament appears to be grinding toward another state championship for Fort Thomas Highlands. The No. 1 Bluebirds took down No. 9 Ashland Blazer by 56-6 last night. Meanwhile, the No. 2 (Boyle County) and No. 3 (Johnson Central) teams lost. The next-highest-ranked team remaining in the tournament is No. 4 Covington Catholic, and Highlands won at CovCath by 42-6 on Sept. 28.

    This class did produce last night's most notable upset: unranked Mercer County 31 at previously unbeaten Boyle 30, as the home-standing Rebels missed what would've been a game-tying extra point with 24 seconds remaining. Up next for Mercer is a trip to Lexington Catholic, which beat the Titans, 34-6, on Sept. 27. Given that the fun might well be over soon for Mercer, here's hoping the Titans remember to have a happy week in Harrodsburg. Mercer upset No. 10 Knox Central in the first round; it beat Boyle County for the first time since 2007 last night, and now it has advanced deeper into the playoffs than in any year since winning the Class 2A championship in 2006.

    Next week's 4A games:

    Franklin-Simpson (8-4) at Owensboro (9-3, No. 8)
    Goshen North Oldham (9-3) at Shelbyville Martha Layne Collins (10-2, No. 5)
    Mercer County (8-4) at Lexington Catholic (9-3, No. 6)
    Covington Catholic (10-2, No. 4) at Fort Thomas Highlands (11-1, No. 1, defending state champ)

    1. The KHSAA should force Highlands into 5A, or maybe even into 6A.

  15. Class 5A has felt like a name-your-score situation for Bowling Green all season, and, so far in the state tournament, that score has been 48.5-7. The Purples beat Owensboro Apollo, 49-7, in the first round and Christian County, 48-7, in the second. Neither opponent was ranked, and both games were at Bowling Green's El Donaldson Stadium. So maybe things get tougher for the defending state champs this week at No. 10 Graves County?

    It's a pretty balanced 5A third round coming up, otherwise:

    Bowling Green (11-0, No. 1, defending state champ) at Graves County (10-2, No. 10)
    Mount Washington Bullitt East (11-1, No. 8) at Elizabethtown John Hardin (10-2, No. 3)
    Franklin County (11-1, No. 6) at Anderson County (10-2, No. 5)
    Berea Madison Southern (10-1, No. 4) at Pulaski County (12-0, No. 2)

  16. And then there's the Class 6A tournament, from which McCracken County was eliminated Friday with a 32-23 loss as home to Central Hardin ...

  17. Last season, how this tournament worked out in retrospect was:

    -- the "super district"--District 4, with Trinity, St. X, Male and Manual--boiled itself down to one very close game in Round 3 of the state tournament (Trinity beat St. X by 15-14);

    -- then, after cruising through three rounds, Scott County got its big shot in the state semifinals by facing Trinity to decide the winner of the bottom half of the bracket (Trinity prevailed, 21-14), and

    -- finally, in the championship, Trinity met the best of the Louisville teams that are lucky enough to play in the upper bracket of the state tournament (Pleasure Ridge Park succumbed, 61-7).

    So, if that same plot plays out this season, we're talking about this Friday's Trinity/Male winner outlasting Scott County again in two weeks and then vanquishing Butler in the championship in Bowling Green ...

  18. But is the "super district" as dominant relative to the state as it was in 2012? Trinity lost at Male, 24-14, on Oct. 18. Has Male risen to Trinity 2012's quality? Has Trinity slipped? Have those two met somewhere in the middle?

    Is Scott County better than it was last season? The Cardinals was 11-1 at this point in 2012, and their 12-0 now. Of course, Highlands was not on this year's schedule, and that's who accounted for Scott County's one regular-season loss last season.

    And what's the deal with Simon Kenton? The Pioneers are 12-0, but they were challenged closely early in the season by both Collins and Conner of Class 5A ...

    1. The Cardinals "were" 11-1, and "they're" 12-0, of course. Sorry.

  19. Here are 6A quarters:

    Cecilia Central Hardin (11-1, No. 8) at Meade County (10-2, No. 9)
    Independence Simon Kenton (12-0, No. 3) at Louisville Butler (10-2)
    Louisville Trinity (6-5, No. 5, defending state champ) at Louisville Male (11-1, No. 2)
    Lexington Henry Clay (9-2, No. 10) at Scott County (12-0, No. 1)

    1. Wait, you mean Trinity beat Manual, even though Manual was ranked ahead of them?

      I'm shocked, shocked that this would happen.

  20. Finally, before next season, I hope Paducah Tilghman merges into McCracken County High.

    1. Why stop there? Let's also add Ballard and Marshall County. We'll call it the Northern Jackson Purchase Regional Secondary School, or NJPRSS for short. The school colors will be red, white, and blue, and the mascot will be the Eagles.