Posted On: 02/26/18 9:48 PM
We are only 2 and a half weeks from the start of the KHSAA Sweet 16 at Rupp Arena. Half the schools in Kentucky have been eliminated from the postseason and by Thursday night, that number will dip to 64 teams remaining. The games get started on Tuesday night in the 6th and 7th regions before the rest of the state starts regional play on Wednesday night. We’re going to take a look at the 8 top players remaining in each region and take a shot at power ranking the remaining teams. The 15th region starts play on Wednesday night. All regional games take place at the East Kentucky Expo Center. Here’s a breakdown of the 15th region tournament and the top individual players still playing.
Elite 8 Players (in no order):
Isiah Roblee, Belfry – A big time shooter, Roblee has made a remarkable 214 threes on the season while shooting 45% from downtown. The Senior averages 22 points per game and has actually made more threes than twos on the year. Better keep a hand up on him.
Devin Varney, Belfry – The second leading scorer for the Pirates, Varney is averaging 15 points and 4 rebounds for Belfry. To make a run, Belfry will need big tournaments from Varney and Roblee.
Cody Potter, Shelby Valley – Potter is a scorer with range out past the college 3 point line on his jump shot. Just a sophomore, Potter averaged 17 points and 8 rebounds while shooting 42% from 3 and 47% overall.
Jacob Rice, Johnson Central – The best player on a good Johnson Central team, Rice made the district title winning shot last week and will need some more heroics to get Johnson Central back to Rupp Arena.
Wyatt Battaille, Pikeville – The best player in the region and a potential Division 1 college player, Battaille is a dynamic offensive player who can score on anyone. Wyatt averaged 25 points per game in the regular season and is capable of going for 30-40 any game.
Christian Mounts, Pike County Central – Averaging 20 points and 7 rebounds per game while shooting 45% from behind the 3 point line, Mounts is a big time scorer who will be relied on to carry a big scoring load for his team to knock off Pikeville in the quarterfinals.
Roger Tackett, Floyd Central – A high scoring guard, Tackett pours in 19 points per game on average for the season and will need to increase that output for his team to make a run at Rupp Arena in their inaugural season.
Mason Moore, Paintsville – The best freshman in the region, Moore averages 17 points per game for the Tigers. Moore also pulls down 6 rebounds per game. If Paintsville is going to make a Cinderella run to Rupp Arena, Moore and sophomores Nick Keeton and Seth Williams will get them there.
1. Pikeville – The favorites to get back to Rupp Arena will have a tough road to get there but are more than capable.
2. Shelby Valley – The Wildcats certainly have a favorable draw in the regional.
3. Paintsville – Well coached and full of firepower, a Paintsville/Pikeville game in the semifinals would be a good one.
4. Pike County Central – If the had drawn anyone but Pikeville, they would likely be higher in the rankings.
5. Floyd Central- Their opening matchup against Paintsville should be electric.
6. Belfry – On their best night, the Pirates can beat anyone. On their worst night, they can get run out of the gym by Shelby Valley in the quarterfinals.
7. Johnson Central – A very young team, they upset Paintsville to win the district and will be favored to beat Prestonsburg. But may not get any farther.
8. Prestonsburg – The only team to advance to the regional tournament with a losing record, look for their stay in the region to be a short one.