Last updated: July 18. 2013 7:36PM - 119 Views
STEVE LeMASTER
slemaster@civitasmedia.com



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PIKEVILLE - Johnson Central is headed back to Rupp Arena. The champion out of the 57th District, Johnson Central punched its ticket to the 2013 Boys’ Sweet 16 on Saturday night, defeating district foe Sheldon Clark 59-48 to capture its second straight 15th Region title at the East Kentucky Expo Center.


Johnson Central, under the direction of head coach Tommy McKenzie, won its eighth straight game, improving to 22-11.


Three players reached double figures in the scoring column as Johnson Central pulled off back-to-back 15th Region title triumphs. Sophomore guard Braxton Blair led Johnson Central with 12 points. Shane Hall and Kyle Gullett, a player who entered the game off the bench, added 11 points apiece for the Golden Eagles. The tournament-tested Johnson Central bench outscored Sheldon Clark’s reserves 15-0.


Johnson Central used a 19-8 run in the second quarter to distance itself from district rival Sheldon Clark, who led 14-11 at the conclusion of the opening period.


After moving ahead in the second quarter, Johnson Central never trailed again. The Golden Eagles owned multiple double digit leads in the first half before settling for a 30-22 lead at halftime.


Johnson Central dominated on the boards, outrebounding Sheldon Clark 33-18. Sheldon Clark was limited to only five offensive rebounds.


The Golden Eagles shot 56.1 percent (23-of-41) from the field. Johnson Central was five of 10 from 3-point range.


Hall, who was named the 15th Region Tournament Most Valuable Player for the second straight year, also had six rebounds and two blocks.


Sophomore guard Chase Parsley paced Sheldon Clark with a game-high 29 points. As part of his game-high scoring effort, Parsley was 10 of 25 from the field. The talented guard connected on three of nine 3-point field goal attempts.


Parsley was the only Sheldon Clark scorer to reach double figures. Dylan James and Chase Kirk both finished one shot short of double figures, scoring eight points apiece for the Cardinals.


Sheldon Clark shot 36.3 percent (15-of-41) from the field in the season-ending loss. The Cardinals were only five of 18 from 3-point range against familiar foe Johnson Central.


The Golden Eagles will face 7th Region champion Ballard in the opening round of the Boys’ Sweet 16 in Rupp Arena on Thursday. Tipoff for the Johnson Central-Ballard game is set for 6:30 p.m.


15th Region Boys’ Basketball Tournament


Championship Game


at East Kentucky Expo Center


Johnson Central 59, Sheldon Clark 48


Sheldon Clark (48): James 8, Kirk 8, Chase Parsley 29, Rice 2, Blackburn 1.


Johnson Central (59): Hall 11, Blair 12, Adkins 7, McPeek 5, Gullett 11, Salyer 9, McKenzie 2, Hitchcock 2.


Sheldon Clark……..1486 20-48


Johnson Central…..11 197 22-59


HIGH SCHOOL SCOREBOARD


15th Region Boys’ Basketball Tournament


at East Kentucky Expo Center


Monday, Feb. 25


Johnson Central 61, Prestonsburg 52


Pikeville 74, Pike County Central 58


Tuesday, Feb. 26


Sheldon Clark 64, Betsy Layne 55


East Ridge 61, Belfry 59


Friday, March 1


Semifinals


Johnson Central 61, Pikeville 57


Sheldon Clark 54, East Ridge 42


Saturday, March 2


Championship Game


Johnson Central 59, Sheldon Clark 48





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