A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Former 9th Region standouts Hatton, Weyer making big impacts for in-state college hoops teams

By Don Owen
NKyTribune sports reporter

During his storied basketball career at Dixie Heights High School, Brandon Hatton set every imaginable scoring record for the Colonels. In fact, Hatton ended his prep career with 3,045 points, the most in 9th Region history.

KWC’s Brandon Hatton

Hatton is now continuing his exploits as an effective scorer in the starting lineup for Kentucky Wesleyan College. The 6-foot-2 junior guard averages 12.8 points per game for the Panthers, who have won an NCAA Division II-record eight national championships.

On Friday, Hatton scored a career-high 24 points as Kentucky Wesleyan posted an 88-78 victory over Shorter (Ga.) University. He netted 10 consecutive points early in the first half, including a pair of long-range jumpers from beyond the arc, as the Panthers built a 24-14 lead against Shorter.

Hatton’s 7-for-12 shooting performance from the field on Friday included five 3-pointers. A week earlier, he poured in 16 points against Auburn-Montgomery and also dished out a team-leading seven assists in that game.

Success on the hardwood has followed Hatton, who played varsity basketball as a seventh-grader for Dixie Heights. He saw action in 183 games at Dixie Heights and drained a school-record 334 shots from 3-point range. He also made 82 percent of his free throws and grabbed 522 rebounds while a member of the Colonels.

Hatton was named 9th Region player of the year in 2014 after averaging 25.0 points and 5.0 rebounds per game. He ended his career as just the 31st player in Kentucky high school basketball history to score at least 3,000 points.

Hatton began his college career at the University of Vermont, where he averaged 3.9 points per game in limited action as a freshman in 2014-15. He transferred to Kentucky Wesleyan and averaged 6.5 points per contest last season as the Panthers posted a 28-3 record and advanced to the NCAA Division II Tournament. Kentucky Wesleyan also won the Great Midwest Athletic Conference championship last season.

WEYER EXCELS AT BELLARMINE: Former Newport Central Catholic all-state basketball player Ben Weyer is off to a tremendous start this season for Bellarmine University, averaging 12.2 points per game and leading the Knights in 3-pointers made with 14.

Bellarmine’s Ben Weyer

On Friday afternoon, Weyer pumped in 14 points and buried four 3-pointers as Bellarmine posted a 75-69 win at previously undefeated Barry (Fla.) University. The unbeaten Knights (5-0) are ranked No. 3 nationally in the Division II poll, while Barry (3-1) is No. 5.

Earlier in the week, Weyer led Bellarmine to a key 65-50 road win at Wayne State (Mich.) on Tuesday night with 16 points. Weyer drained four 3-pointers in that victory and grabbed four rebounds.

Weyer, a 6-foot-7 sophomore forward from Ft. Thomas, has started all five games for Bellarmine this season. He is a major reason the Knights were picked as preseason favorites to win the Great Lakes Valley Conference.

During his senior year at NewCath, Weyer averaged 21.6 points and 11.4 rebounds as the Thoroughbreds finished 30-5. Weyer scored 22 points and pulled won 12 rebounds in NewCath’s 52-47 win over top-ranked Covington Catholic in the 9th Region Tournament championship game.

NewCath then advanced to the state tournament semifinals before falling to eventual state champion Lexington Paul Dunbar. Weyer earned 9th Region Player of the Year honors as a senior and was also named to the all-state team.

As a freshman at Bellarmine last season, Weyer earned a spot on the GLVC’s All-Freshman Team after averaging 6.8 points per game. He also shot 52.5 percent from the field, 47.1 percent from 3-point range and 85.7 percent from the free-throw line.

Contact Don Owen at don@nkytrib.com

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