1. Holmes (22-0)
Why: The Bulldogs stayed perfect with two wins this week.
1/22: Holmes 68 Ryle 47 - Ryle led at the half 29-26, but it was all Dogs in the second half as they slowly pulled away to notch their 21st victory of the season. Holmes was led by BJ Coston (18 pts), Chris Englemon (16 pts, 14 rbs), James Bolden (15 pts, 7 ast), and Quan Palmer (11 pts).
1/25: Holmes 88 Beechwood 62 - In another Holmes blowout, it was the James Bolden show as Holmes improved to 3-0 in the 35th district standings. Bolden finished the game with 25 pts, 7 ast, 6 stls, and 4 rbs. Nine Holmes players got in to the scorebook, with BJ Coston (13 pts, 7 rbs), Chris Englemon (13 pts, 5 rbs), and Quentin Chames (12 pts, 8 rbs, 4 blks) also reaching double figures in scoring.
Overall: Holmes continues to win, but the most impressive thing about their 22 game winning streak, which ties the 2009 state title team win streak, is that on any given night they can have a different starter lead them in scoring. The biggest key for them going forward is the emergence of BJ Coston who is finally playing like most expected him to at the beginning of the season. Since the Covcath game, Coston has been on a tear. With him playing like a top 10 player in the region and Quentin Chames consistently at or close to a double double, this Holmes team is becoming more complete with each week.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 v Dixie Heights; Friday 2/1 v Highlands
2. Newport Catholic (22-2)
Why: The Breds went 5-0 this week and won the All A State Championship.
1/22: Newcath 59 Highlands 22 - The Breds put on an absolute defensive clinic in this one as they held a 49-9 lead through 3 quarters and held Highlands without a field goal in the 3rd quarter. Sophomore Zach Pangallo led the Breds with 12 points, with Jake Schulte also reaching double digits with 11 points.
1/24: Newcath 47 Somerset 33 - In the first round of the All A state tournament, it was another Breds defensive effort that led them to victory. The Breds trailed by one at the half but outscored the Jumpers 28-13 in the second half. Newcath was led by Drew McDonald (19 points), Jake Schulte (13 points), and Michael Beuter (11 points).
1/25: Newcath 60 Lou. Holy Cross 46 - It was the underclassmen in the front court that led the Breds in to the All A semiís as Drew McDonald put up 17 poits, 7 rebounds, while Jake Schulte finished with a double double at 14 points, 10 rebounds. Senior Michael Beuter also finished in double digits with 12 points.
1/26: Newcath 49 Knott Co Central 44 - Big time players step up in big time situations and that was exactly what Michael Beuter (20 points) did in the semiís of the All A state tournament. Jake Schulte was the anchor in the post with 12 points, 8 rebounds.
1/27: Newcath 75 Bardstown 54 - The Breds won their second All A State Championship in school history behind MVP Drew McDonald and Michael Beuterís 21 points apiece. Jake Schulte chipped in 12 points, and Nick Seibert finished with 11 points in one of the most balanced offensive outputs for the Breds to date.
Overall: After losing back to back games, Newcath has won 10 straight and brought home the All A Classic State Championship. The Breds move up to #2 in the rankings this week for the simple fact that they are playing so well right now. With Nick Seibert now back and showing in the championship game that he is his normal self, the Breds are primed and ready for a deep post season run.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 at North College Hill, OH ; Friday 2/1 at Bishop Brossart
3. Covington Catholic (19-4)
Why: The Colonels went 2-1 this week.
1/23: Covcath 69 Boone County 54 - The Colonels went on the road and picked up a win, despite playing without senior Nick Fredrick, who was serving a two game suspension. Covcath outscored Boone 19-10 in the third quarter to break a halftime tie and pull away. Zack Tobler and Nick Ruthsatz led the Colonels with 16 points each, while Bo Schuh chipped in 9 points and pulled down 12 rebounds. Sawyer Pauly and Mark Schult also got in double figures scoring with 10 points apiece.
1/25: Withrow, OH 60 Covcath 52 - In a game that featured 6 lead changes and 5 ties, the Colonels came out on the losing end. Ben Heppler and Zack Tobler led Covcath with 15 points each, while Nick Ruthsatz contributed 10 points.
1/26: Covcath 77 Ryle 62 - Nick Ruthsatz (21 points), Zach Tobler (15 points), and Nick Fredrick (13 points) all reached double digits in scoring for the Colonels in the win. Junior guard Nick Ruthsatz also scored his 1,000th career point in the game.
Overall: The Colonels fell one spot in the rankings this week, but it had nothing to do with the loss to Withrow, and more to do with how well Newcath has been playing lately. With them getting Nick Seibert back and winning the All A state championship, they dropped Covcath down one spot. Still, the solid play of Ben Heppler recently has to make Colonels fans feel good.
Next: Monday 1/28 at Scott ; Friday 2/1 v Holy Cross
4. Cooper (15-4)
Why: The Jags went 2-0 this week in district play.
1/23: Cooper 59 Conner 48- In a 33rd district contest, the Jags went on the road and picked up the W behind 15 points from Zach McNeil. Cooper jumped out to an 11-0 lead and never looked back. Also reaching double figures in scoring was senior AJ Collins with 13 points.
1/25: Cooper 60 Ryle 24- It was another defensive clinic for the Tim Sullivan led Jags. In the nkysports.com game of the week, Cooper jumped out to a 41-7 lead at the half, limiting Ryle to just 7 free throws, and not allowing a field goal until the 7:13 mark of the third quarter. AJ Collins took home the player of the game honor with 19 points ; 13 coming in the first half. Zach McNeil also finished in double figures with 17 points.
Overall: Cooper has lost 4 games but won 8 of their last 9, with the only loss coming on the road by 6 to #1 Holmes. With the team defense that they are playing right now, they will be a tough out come tournament time. This is a team that is really hitting their stride at the right time, despite dealing with an injury to senior big man Lou Maniacci.
Next: Wednesday 1/30 at Pendleton County, Friday 2/1 v Simon Kenton
5. Newport (14-5)
Why: Newport won their only game of the week.
1/23: Newport 92 Augusta 79 - All 5 Newport starters reached double figures in scoring, but it was the Cody Pearson show as he finished with a career high 30 points in the win. JaSean Short (20 points), Marquis Commodore (18 points), Arroyal Wright (12 points), and JaSean Short (12 points) were the other Wildcats to reach double figures.
Overall- This Newport team continues to win and are quietly holding steady at the #5 spot in the rankings. Newport has now won 10 of their last 12 with those two losses coming to #2 Newcath.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 at Boone County ; Wednesday 1/30 v Riverview East Academy, OH
6. Holy Cross (11-8)
Why: The Indians only played one game this week but went on the road and got the W.
1/23: Holy Cross 72 Frankfort 38 - 11 Holy Cross players got in the scorebook, as Holy Cross dominated from start to finish. Tony Campbell (18 points, 11 rebounds) led the way for the Indians, while freshman Markel McClendon also reached double figures with 14 points.
Overall: Holy Cross continues to be a team that will go as far as Tony Campbell takes them. The biggest key for them going forward is consistency from Markel McClendon. When he is playing well to take pressure off Campbell and the other seniors, Holy Cross is a very dangerous team and extremely tough to beat. This coming week will let us know if the loss to Newport in the All A semiís took away some of their momentum or not, with two tough road games.
Next: Friday 2/1 at Covcath ; Saturday 2/2 at Dixie Heights
7. Dixie Heights (12-10)
Why: Dixie went 1-1 this week.
1/22: Dixie 68 Lloyd 36 - It was all Colonels in this one as Brandon Hatton led the way with 21 points. Sophomore Andrew Hedger contributed 11 points in the win.
1/25: Simon Kenton 85 Dixie Heights 66- A rough first quarter for the Colonels ended up being the difference as Dixie was outscored 30-13. Brandon Hatton had 31 points, but junior Adam Daria was the only other Colonel to reach double figures with 10 points.
Overall: Dixie is a lot better than their 12-10 record. They have easily played one of the toughest schedules in the area. Dixie is maybe a year away from being a top 3 team in the region, but with the youth they have getting more experience each week, they are going to be a tough out come region tournament time.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 at Holmes ; Saturday 2/2 v Holy Cross
8. Boone County (12-10)
Why: The Rebels went 2-1 this week.
1/23: Covcath 69 Boone Co 54- The Rebels were able to hang with the Colonels for a half, but were outscored 35-20 in the second half. Brett Mayberry led Boone with 21 points, while Brannnen McDonald finished with 11 points.
1/25: Boone Co 72 Conner 58- Sophomore Brendan Stanley led the way for Boone with a 21 point performance. Jesse Schultz (12 points) and Brannen McDonald (11 points) also reached double figures for the Rebels in the win.
Overall: Boone is moving up in the rankings each week. The win over Conner lands them one spot ahead of the Cougars at #8.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 v Newport ; Friday 2/1 at Ryle
9. Conner (8-10)
Why: The Cougars went 1-2 this week.
1/23: Cooper 59 Conner 48
1/25: Boone Co 72 Conner 58
1/26: Conner 54 Highlands 40
Overall: Conner has the talent in their front court to be a solid 9th region team but inconsistency with good guard play is the reason they havenít been ranked higher than 7th so far this season. The Cougars dropped back to back 33rd district games this week, before knocking off a Highlands team that has also struggled this season.
Next: Tuesday 1/29 v Beechwood ; Friday 2/1 v Scott
Overall: It was a rough week for the Raiders as they faced three of the top 4 teams in the region. Drew Mays led Ryle against Holmes with 17 and against Covcath with 25 points but other than that, not much else to report for this week. Ryle has now lost 11 of their last 14.
Next: Friday 2/1 v Boone Co
Top Games this Week:
#3 Covcath at Scott
#7 Dixie Heights at #1 Holmes
#5 Newport at #8 Boone Co
#6 Holy Cross at #3 Covcath (35th district 1st round preview)
#8 Boone Co at #10 Ryle
#1 Newcath at Bishop Brossart