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Elizabethtown defeats Knott County Central; NKU recruit Mason scores 16 in Bowling Green victory

NKyTribune staff

LEXINGTON — Jaquais Franklin scored 25 points, dished out seven assists and grabbed seven rebounds as Elizabethtown rolled to an 87-59 win over Knott County Central in the opening game of the Sweet 16 on Wednesday.

Kam Sherrard added 16 points, six rebounds and five steals for Elizabethtown, which improved to 20-2. The Panthers shot 53.8 percent from the field and forced Knott County Central into 20 turnovers.

Elizabethtown guard Khia Sherrard (22) drives past Knott County Central’s Kent Damron at Rupp Arena. (KHSAA photo)

Franklin netted 14 points and dished out five assists in the first half as Elizabethtown built a 49-28 lead at the break. Sherrard scored 10 points in the opening half for the Panthers, who used an 18-2 advantage in fast-break points during the opening 16 minutes.

Elizabethtown led by as many as 35 points in the fourth quarter and cruised into Friday’s quarterfinals.

Alandre Murphy finished with 15 points and five rebounds for Elizabethtown, while teammate Khia Sherrard netted 13 points and collected seven assists. Camden Williams added 11 points and six rebounds as the Panthers won the battle of the boards by a 32-22 margin.

Josh McGuire scored 21 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Knott County Central, which closed the season with an 18-8 record. The Patriots shot 53.1 percent from the field but were outscored 34-9 in points off turnovers.

In other first-round games on Wednesday:

•BOWLING GREEN 85, UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS 57 — Turner Buttry scored 14 of his 20 points in the first half — including a trio of 3-pointers — as Bowling Green cruised to an 85-57 win over University Heights. The Purples (24-2) used a 24-11 spurt in the second quarter to turn an 18-17 lead into a 42-28 cushion at the break.

Isaiah Mason netted 16 points and grabbed six rebounds for Bowling Green. Mason, a Northern Kentucky University recruit, scored 12 of his points in the second half. He also dished out three assists as Bowling Green won its 12th consecutive game.

Jacobi Huddleston added 14 points, 10 rebounds and six assists as Bowling Green shot 50 percent from the field. The Purples also knocked down 9 shots from 3-point range in 18 attempts.

K.J. Crump scored 20 points to lead University Heights, which dropped to 15-10. The Blazers, who captured the 2nd Region championship, entered the Sweet 16 with a seven-game winning streak.

•LOUISVILLE BALLARD 70, MADISON CENTRAL 61 — Keno Hayden poured in 26 points for Ballard and teammate Gabe Sisk added 19 points as the Bruins posted a 70-61 win over Madison Central.

Ballard’s Gabe Sisk (21) attempts a shot while being closely defended by Madison Central’s Jaylen Davis. (KHSAA photo)

Maker Bar grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds and blocked three shots for Ballard, which held Madison Central to 39.2 percent shooting from the field. The 6-foot-10 Bar also scored 11 points and collected a pair of steals as Ballard improve to 20-2.

Kole Browne led Madison Central (21-10) with 21 points. Jaylen Davis added 16 points for the Indians, while teammate Will Hardin finished with 15 points and nine rebounds.

Ballard will meet Bowling Green in a quarterfinal game Friday at 2 p.m.

•GEORGE ROGERS CLARK 54, OLDHAM COUNTY 47 — Jerone Morton scored 19 points as George Rogers Clark advanced to the quarterfinals with a 54-47 win over Oldham County in the nightcap. The Cardinals built a 15-point lead in the third quarter and held off a late Oldham County rally to improve to 20-4.

Samuel Campbell scored 16 points for Oldham County, which finished the season with a 14-5 record. The Colonels shot 37 percent from the field but won the rebounding battle by a 33-24 margin. George Rogers Clark, though, finished with a 30-20 scoring edge in the paint.

George Rogers Clark faces Elizabethtown in a quarterfinal contest Friday at 11 a.m.

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