Turnovers … by Alan B. Gibson

Posted April 6, 2021 at 12:20 pm

March Madness continues,

on to Rupp Arena – II

The Bluebirds are the champs.

The KHSAA Sweet 16 boys’ state basketball tournament returned to center stage last week after a 2020 COVID-19 hiatus and when all was said and done, Kentucky crowned a new champion – the Bluebirds from Fort Thomas Highlands.

It wasn’t the Bluebirds’ first dance in the Sweet 16, but it is the first championship claim for Highlands.

Normally thought of as a football powerhouse (think Jared Lorenzen, along with about a dozen or so other pro football players and 23 KHSAA football championships), the Bluebirds emerged out of a noticeably weaker bottom bracket to reach Saturday night’s championship game.

My pick had Bowling Green taking this year’s title, coming out of what was a much, much tougher eight team lineup in the top bracket.

Wasn’t to be for the Purples this year, after they easily whipped up on University Heights in the opening round, only to run into a buzz saw in the Panthers of Louisville Ballard in the quarter-final round.

E-town faced Highlands in Saturday night’s championship game, but after absolutely wearing themselves out in the semis against Ballard, even the radio team working the tournament began talking about how fatigued E-town was early in the second half.

For the first time in a long, long time, I sat out of this tournament for a host of reasons. Limited seating in Rupp, having to sit through entire games wearing a mask, time between games to disinfect Rupp Arena and just the entire COVID-19 atmosphere made me decide to stay at home and hopefully get a new streak started with some normal surroundings in 2022.

I will say that listening to most of the games over the KHSAA network was certainly a joy and did provide some relief from the withdrawals I was having not sitting in the stands.

Four more days and we cap this

2020-2021 roundball season

Although the players, coaches and fans were glad to get a season in with all of the COVID troubles we were surrounded with, there’s a little bit of admitted relief when we put this one behind us.

The end comes Saturday night, again in Rupp Arena, when the Girls’ Sweet 16 championship game flips off.

Again, I’ll be listening to most games over the KHSAA radio network.

Bethlehem (25-4) and Anderson County (26-2) are pretty much consensus toss ups as likely champions this year, and that matchup could actually come to be for a Saturday night game with those two squads coming at each other from opposite brackets.

Our 4th Region representative, Bowling Green (18-10), is a long-shot, generally rated in the bottom half of the field, but they could be a Cinderella team, getting the tournament started against an even lower rated Bishop Brossart (21-5) squad in Wednesday’s second game of the day.

It’s finally roundball tournament time…

Don’t call me until mid April!