Bears 12th District Runner-Up
A large, vocal crowd packed the gymnasium at Grayson County High School on Friday night for the championship game of the 12th District Boys Basketball Tournament. The host Grayson County Cougars and the Butler County Bears would meet one last time in 2011-12 to decide who would cut down the nets and hang the banners as 12th District champs.
The game opened with Grayson County riding Ollie Roberts to an early lead. Roberts has established himself as one of the top players in the 3rd Region and showed why with 8 quick points in the first half. BCHS opened in a man-to-man defense, which worked well on every player except Roberts who proved to be too big and quick for the Butler defenders. With Roberts ruling the paint the outside opened up for Grayson’s trio of three-point shooters, Trey and Ryne Tinsley and Brady Clemons. With the crowd at a raucous pitch the Cougars opened up a 13 point lead, and attempted to put an exclamation point on their first half when Ryne Tinsley threw an alley-oop pass to Ethan Saltsman. Saltsman’s dunk attempt failed and led to a runout on the other end for BCHS.
After the dunk the momentum began to switch in the favor of BCHS. The Bears forced four consecutive Cougar turnovers and put together a 7-0 run, forcing Coach Todd Johnston to call a time out. The time out didn’t help as BCHS was able to string together four straight possessions where they hit either a two or three-point basket in the face of the Grayson County defense. With 58 seconds remaining the Bears got a pull-up three by Zeke Woodcock to cut the lead to one. Grayson countered on the other end hitting one out of two free-throws, but the Bears answered. With just under 12 seconds to go in the half Elijah Flener found Trevor Jenkins open in the right corner. Jenkins nailed the three-pointer to end the half and send BCHS to the locker room with an improbable 32-31 lead and the Grayson County crowd stunned to silence.
Trevor Jenkins led BCHS in scoring in the first half with ten points. Zeke Woodcock was close behind with nine points for the Bears. The Cougars were led by Ollie Roberts with ten points in the first half.
The second half opened with a BCHS turnover, and Ollie Roberts converting to regain the lead for Grayson County. Jackson Washer hit a layup moments later to put the Bears back on top, but it would prove to be the final BCHS lead of the evening. Grayson put on a 7-0 run to push the lead to 40-34 and the Bears were never able to recover. Despite never giving in the Bears simply had no match for Roberts who scored 15 points in the second half on his way to a game high 25 points. Despite several charges the Bears never got the lead back under six points in the second half, and Grayson County pulled away to a hard-fought 73-63 win.
BCHS put three players in double figures, led by Trevor Jenkins with 17 points. Jackson Washer had 12 points for the Bears and Zeke Woodcock finished with 11 points.
Following the game the Bears received several awards for the regular and postseason. Elijah Flener was named to the 12th District All Academic Team. Flener was also named All 12th District regular season and to the 12th District All Tournament Team. Trevor Jenkins and Zeke Woodcock joined Flener on the All Tournament team for BCHS. Jenkins and Woodcock were also named to the All 12th District regular season second team.
Butler County finishes the season 11-19 and will now advance to the 3rd Region Tournament where they will face Meade County High School on Thursday night at 6 p.m. at the Owensboro Sportscenter. The Meade County Green Wave was 16-12 for the season and beat Breckinridge County 64-59 to win the 11th District Championship. They are led by Bo Wilson, a three-point specialist averaging just over 15 points per game.
Butler County Scoring (Unofficial) Jenkins-17, Washer-12, Woodcock-11, Flener-8, Thomas-8, Bratcher-4, Goodall-3
Grayson County Scoring (Unofficial)
Roberts-25, Clemons-11, Saltsman-10, Meredith-8, T. Tinsley-8, R. Tinsley-7, Team-4
Story by Joe Morris, BTN
Photos by Jeremy Hack, BTN