The River City News and NKYSports.com have teamed up to bring you their weekly Top-5 Boys Basketball Poll. This will be a weekly feature on Wednesdays to help our loyal readers get a better handle on the local hoops landscape.
1. Newport Central Catholic (9-2): New Cath continues to impress as they have two blowouts in as many days as they easily handled Holy Cross on Monday and Newport on Tuesday. Last week they outlasted St. Louis Academy in overtime at the Clem Haskins Classic to a team that featured many Division I commits on its roster. Junior forward Ben Weyer is emerging as a match-up nightmare for teams with his outside shooting and aggressive offensive rebounding. The road gets tougher for the Breds as they travel to Indianapolis to play in the KABC Classic, followed by an upcoming date against Cov Cath at The Bank of Kentucky Center on January 16.
2. Covington Catholic (10-3): Cov Cath has nicely bounced back from a pair of losses at holiday tournaments including a win at St. Xavier (Cin.) on Tuesday. The Colonels play two more Cincinnati teams in a row when they host Winton Woods on Saturday and travel to Moeller on January 13. Senior point guard Cooper Theobald has been a nice surprise this season for head coach Nick Ruthsatz as he has paired well with sophomore sensation Cole VonHandorf.
3. Holmes (11-3): Holmes needed 40 points from James Bolden on Tuesday to beat a scrappy Scott team on the road, but the Bulldogs have now won eight games in a row and seem to have found their identity as a run-and-gun team. Coach Mike Listerman has enjoyed the development of complimentary guards Markel McClendon, Marcus Mullins and Raavi Commodore. There are still question marks concerning if Holmes can match up against bigger, stronger teams, but they have handled their business well of late. They host Madison Central on Friday in what should be a nice measuring stick for the Bulldogs.
4. Campbell County (11-3): After pulling out a couple of close wins over St. Henry and Bishop Brossart, the Camels fell to Mason County at home on Tuesday. Campbell County's main guard Deondre Jackson was out against Brossart and center Matt Wilson has been less dominating on a night-to-night basis than one might suspect with his size. The Camels have two more out-of-area teams this week when they host Montgomery County on Friday and travel to Lexington Christian on Saturday.
5. Dixie (9-4): Dixie has won nine out of their last 10 games and six in a row to bounce back from dropping their first three to begin the season. Their defensive statistics has been impressive during their streak as they have kept every opponent so far to under 60 points, with the exception of Campbell County in the season opener. The Colonels host Ryle on Friday and head to Latonia on Saturday to play Holy Cross.
Receiving Votes: Scott (9-7), Boone County (9-4)
Photo: Newport Central Catholic basketball team in 2014/RCN file