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NewCath, Walton-Verona win region championships in All “A” Classic small-school playoffs

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

Walton-Verona swept the 8th Region boys and girls championships and Newport Central Catholic took the 9th Region girls title in All “A” Classic playoff games on Saturday.

NewCath edged Holy Cross, 52-50, in the 9th Region final to earn a return trip to the All “A” Classic state tournament that’s scheduled for Feb. 16-21 at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond.

Walton-Verona girls celebrate fourth consecutive 8th Region All “A” Classic championship.

Rylee Turner scored a game-high 28 points and snagged nine rebounds for the Thoroughbreds. The junior guard netted 66 points in three tournament games to earn the most valuable player award.

The top scorers for Holy Cross were freshman Julia Hunt with 22 points and senior Grace Bezold with 16.

Walton-Verona faced Owen County in both the boys and girls 8th Region championship games. The Bearcats won the boys game, 69-43, and the girls completed the sweep with a 51-48 victory.

The Walton-Verona boys went 12-of-23 from behind the 3-point line to account for more than half of their points. Sophomore guard Carter Krohman hit six treys and finished with a game-high 22 points.

The Bearcats’ other double-figure scorers were junior Brant Smithers (16), senior Connor Davis (12) and junior Cam Christy (11). Smithers was named most valuable player on the all-tournament team.

In the girls final, Paige Heuser scored a game-high 16 points for Walton-Verona. The senior forward made four of her team’s nine 3-point goals and walked off with the most valuable player trophy.

Senior point guard Hayley Neely finished with 10 points and five assists for the Bearcats. Junior center Maggie Buerger had six points and a game-high eight rebounds.

This is the fourth consecutive year that Walton-Verona has won girls region title under coach Mark Clinkenbeard. The Bearcats lost in the championship game of the state tournament the last two years.

The 10th Region All “A” Classic boys and girls tournaments resume with semifinal games on Monday and Tuesday. The 9th Region boys tournament begins Monday with a pair of first-round games.

GIRLS – Paris at Brossart, 6 p.m.
BOYS – Bracken County at Brossart, 8 p.m.
GIRLS – Augusta at Robertson County, 6 p.m.
BOYS – Calvary Christian at Robertson County, 8 p.m.
Championship games

Newport at Ludlow, 7 p.m.
Bellevue at Villa Madonna, 7 p.m.
Ludlow-Newport winner at Holy Cross, 7 p.m.
Dayton at Heritage, 7 p.m.
Bellevue-Villa Madonna winner at Beechwood, 7 p.m.
Newport Central Catholic at St. Henry, 7 p.m.
Semifinal games, 7 p.m. at sites to be determined
Championship game, 7 p.m. at Villa Madonna

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