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By GREG CREWS
A few not-so-random thoughts on Kentucky High School basketball while limiting my writing to commercial breaks during the Masters.
As it turned out, Alex Jones was justifying honors she didn’t even know she had yet.
The Elizabethtown High School senior shined Saturday night as she led the Kentucky All-Stars to their first win over the Ohio All-Stars in three years.
Jones scored 12 of her 18 points in the fourth quarter, leading a 15-point Bluegrass State comeback which resulted in a 91-85 victory at Thomas Moore College in Crestview Hills. The 6-foot-1 center, who has signed with Eastern Kentucky University, was named Kentucky’s MVP.
On Sunday, the accolades kept rolling in as Jones was named first team All-State by both the Louisville Courier-Journal and Lexington Herald-Leader. The honors come after she was already named News-Enterprise Area Player of the Year, first team All-Area and first team All-State by The Associated Press.
Jones, who finished her career with the Lady Panthers with 1,871 points and 1,261 rebounds, was the third leading vote-getter in The Herald-Leader’s coaches’ poll, receiving four first-place votes and landing behind Adia Mathies of Iroquois and Ashley Rainey of Warren East.
Jones was fifth in The Courier Journal’s coaches’ poll after being named to the second team as a junior.
The awards are piling up for the Elizabethtown High School girls’ basketball coach, and he keeps deflecting all the credit to his players and assistant coaches.
At some point, he’s going to have to admit he had something to do with the Lady Panthers’ run the state tournament final this past season.
On Sunday, Mudd was selected Coach of the Year by The Courier-Journal and The Herald-Leader, capping the sweep after already being named to the award by The News-Enterprise and The Associated Press.
This is the second time Mudd has been named Coach of the Year by The Courier- Journal, the last coming in 1997, when Mudd also led Elizabethtown to the State finals. He is the only area coach to win the award, which began in 1975, and is only the fifth coach to repeat.
In 15 seasons with the Lady Panthers, Mudd has made three trips to the State finals — winning in 1998 — won the 5th Region Tournament five times and has accumulated a record of 364-100.
RON BEVARS/LAROD KING
The North Hardin High School boys’ basketball duo (coach/senior guard) helped Kentucky retake some pride Saturday as they led the Kentucky All-Stars to a historic win over the Ohio All-Stars.
King finished with eight points and two steals and Bevars coached the squad to a second-half comeback to snap a five-game loosing streak to the boys’ from the Buckeye State with a 100-91 victory at Thomas More College.
Jones wasn’t the only one to land a spot on the All-State teams which were announced Sunday.
Sophomore point guards RaeChaun Edwards of North Hardin and Natalie Greenwell of Elizabethtown were both selected to the third team by The Courier-Journal and were honorable mentions in the poll by The Herald-Leader. Central Hardin senior center Katie Fritts, who is headed to Lipscomb University, was an honorable mention by The Courier-Journal.
On the boys’ side, North Hardin’s Greg Johnson (senior guard) and James Berry (junior guard) were both named honorable mention by The Courier-Journal.
As if North Hardin didn’t have enough people being recognized over the weekend, one of its former players and coaches also garnered an award.
Booher, Pikeville Shelby Valley’s boys’ basketball coach, who played under Bevars before joining his staff as an assistant coach for a brief stint, was named Boys’ Coach of the Year by The Courier- Journal after his Wildcats (31-5) advanced to quarterfinals at State.
Greg Crews is a sports writer for The News-Enterprise. He can be reached at 505-1754 or at firstname.lastname@example.org