High school hoops tourneys signal oncoming Madness
by Justin McGill, General Manager -- jmcgill@cadizrecord.com
Feb 15, 2012 | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print
We’re marching toward what I often consider to be my favorite time of year. Consider that my “favorite” time of year could involve anything from Christmas or Thanksgiving to the start of the hockey season or any number of things surrounding those events.

This week, my favorite time of year is that stretch between the end of February and the middle of March. The weather – in relatively normal parts of the world, at least – is changing. Flowers bloom. Birds sing. Shorts can be comfortably worn outside by those of us who are willing to admit to getting older and having less interest in cold weather.

And basketball tournaments.

Next week, Trigg County High School’s boys and girls basketball teams will travel to Eddyville for the 5th District Tournament, both seeking to – at the very least – advance to the finals and qualify for the 2nd Region tournaments the following week.

Let this serve as a reminder, since I’ve noticed crowds at Trigg games have been rubber-banding this season. Wildcat Gymnasium has had its share of loud nights, but mostly only for games like Christian County and a couple of the district games. There are times – like Friday at Caldwell County, for example – when Big Black supporters have done a better job on the road than at home.

Folks, the regular season ends this week. It’s cold outside, it gets dark early, and there are few really good excuses for those of you with any interest in sports or supporting our community’s youth to not get to those games and boots our kids a little.

Friday, the Wildcats trailed Caldwell by 18 points late in the third quarter but stormed back to win, thanks to the team’s perserverance that was matched by those who made the drive from Cadiz. That was great to see and hear. Let’s do it again and help push these teams as far as they can go.

After that (or simultaneously, if those Trigg teams catch fire), we can turn our attention to college hoops and March Madness.

Now, I’d never let any college sports fan forget that western Kentucky bleeds the same shade of Blue as Lexington does. And with Big Blue holding the top ranking in the nation, of course those Wildcats are on everyone’s minds.

But let’s not forget about that other team in the Commonwealth making headlines this year.

Check that, making POSITIVE headlines. Louisville ... will not enter this conversation.

I’m talking about my alma mater, Murray State. Surely, everyone around here knows the Racers were the final team to lose a college basketball game this season, starting the year 23-0 before losing Thursday against Tennessee State ...

... in the first game they played with me in attendance. I’m taking at least part of the blame.

Still, the Racers, ranked No. 14 in this week’s coaches’ poll and No. 16 in the Associated Press poll, appear poised to keep turning heads further into March than they ever have before.

I can’t wait.

It’s my favorite time of year.

Until April. When my St. Louis Cardinals begin defending their World Series championship. Or August. When football seasons begin again. Or ...

Justin McGill is general manager of The Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at jmcgill@cadizrecord.com.
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