xt7n028pcz31 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7n028pcz31/data/mets.xml Wildcat News Company 1986 Volume 10 -- Number 29 athletic publications  English Wildcat News Company Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. The Cats' Pause UKAW University of Kentucky Men's Basketball (1985-1986) coaches Sutton, Eddie players Hanson, Reggie Chiles, Kirk McGill, John officials UK vs. University of Alabama (March 20, 1986) UK vs. LSU (March 22, 1986) assistant coaches Hamilton, Leonard NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament (1986) University of Kentucky Football (1986) Claiborne, Jerry statistics schedules Cats' Pause Combs, Oscar The Cats' Pause,  "March 29, 1986" text The Cats' Pause,  "March 29, 1986" 1986 2012 true xt7n028pcz31 section xt7n028pcz31 Margaret !
Lexington, Kentucky  40506
NFL Scouts Impressed With Cats
Kirk Chiles Remembers Rupp Days
The Cats' Pause
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Cats Bow Out With Loss To LSU
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Hanson Wins State Tourney MVP As Pulaski County Nets State Title
Pulaski County did it the hard way but the Maroons of Dave Fraley captured the 69th State Basketball Tournament with a thrilling, but customary 47-45 upset victory over No. 1 Pleasure Ridge Park.
The Maroons earned a spot in last Saturday's championship game at Rupp Arena by winning three tightly contested games in earlier rounds.
Wednesday afternoon Pulaski defeated Clay County 83-78, which was its largest margin of victory during the four-day event. In the quarterfinals, Pulaski County slipped past Clark County 61-60. and in the semifinals the Maroons upset No. 2 Owensboro 70-68 in overtime.
Against PRP Shannon Fraley's driving layin with 10 ticks remaining knocked off the top-ranked squad from Louisville before a crowd of 18,000.
"To have my son win the state championship on a last shot is more than I could even dreamed," said the Pulaski County coach. "I just want to stand here and love all this as long as possible and love what it means to me, my team and Pulaski County."
The Maroons were led by UK-bound Reggie Hanson's 17 points while Fraley, a junior guard, pumped in 16.
For his efforts during the Sweet 16 Hanson was named Most Valuable Player.
In the four games the senior hit on 32-of-45 attempts from the field, 28-of-33 from the charity stripe, grabbed 39 rebounds, blocked seven shots, had four steals and two assists.
Said Hanson after his team had just clinched the title, "Everything's going through my mind. I'm just glad we won."
PRP, 36-3, had once last gasp at tying the ballgame, but Derrick Wilcox's 12-foot jumper failed to drop as Pulaski County's Jeff Pierce hauled down the rebound. . .and with it the state title. It was the only loss of the entire season to a Kentucky prep team.
Desmond Porter led PRP with 18 points followed by Wilcox with 12.
Both PRP and Pulaski County had tough
The State Tourney
Action In State Finals
semifinal battles that morning.
In the first game, Pulaski County led the whole game until Marcus Robinson's three-point play with 15 seconds remaining gave Owensboro a 61-60 advantage. However, Hanson was fouled with one second remaining. The forward swished the first attempt but came up short on the second.
Hanson's two free throws in the extra period gave the Maroons a 70-68 with six seconds left. The Red Devils, who at this time had four of five starters on the bench with five fouls, had one last chance by
Maurice White's 20-footer fell short.
In PRP's 56-54 victory over Hazard, Wilcox was the hero as his 10-footer put the Panthers ahead (53-52) with 13 seconds remaining. A steal and layup clinched the victory.
During the late stages of the game, the Rupp Arena crowd (15.000 who were mostly for the Bulldogs) really backed the underdogs from the mountains. And, when two or three questionable calls went the Panthers' way fans began to throw programs, ice and wads of paper on the Rupp Arena court. Play had to be delayed for almost five minutes.
Besides Hanson, other players to make the all-tourney team were: Fraley (Pulaski County), Wilcox (PRP), Porter (PRP), Dwayne Cornett (Hazard), Carl Wallace (Hazard), Scott Draud (Fort Thomas Highlands), David Hogg (Owensboro), Avery Taylor (Owensboro), John Pelphrey (Paintsville), Felton Spencer (Eastern) and Lamont Ware (Hopkinsville).
The Louisville Courier-Journal's Ted San-ford Award went to Hazard's Terry North. The annual award is given in regards to: basketball ability, sportsmanship, academic accomplishment and citizenship.
Justin Hancock (Paducah Tilghman), Jeff Baldwin (Paintsville) and John Calvert (Hopkinsville) were receipients of the Kentucky High School Athletic Association Sweet Sixteen Academic Scholarship Award. The student-athletes were awarded $2,000 scholarships which can be directed to the Kentucky college of their choice. The award was based on their outstanding achievements on the court and in the classroom.
Pulaski County-PRP Action r"
Dallas - So Close And Yet So Far Away
So close and yet so far away. The thought probably passed through the minds of the Kentucky Wildcats a thousand times since last Saturday afternoon.
Forget that the Wildcats advanced farther than anyone ever dreamed, save for eternal optimist Roger Harden.
The loss hurt. Oh, how it hurt.
The anguish clearly showed on the faces of the Wildcats for more than an hour after the game.
You could see the hurt in the eyes of Kentucky's coaching staff. So close and yet so far away.
Kentucky accomplished an unbelievable season, winning 32 of its first 35 games, including a record 20 Southeastern Conference games in a row.
It defeated the likes of arch-rivals Indiana and Louisville in December, then whipped Alabama and LSU not once, not even twice, but three times prior to the NCAA tournament.
But that wasn't enough. Kentucky was seeded first in the Southeast Region, but would have to defeat both Alabama and LSU a fourth time to earn a trip to the Final Four.
It just wasn't to be.
Kentucky met just about every challenge put to the Cats in Eddie Sutton's first year as head coach of the Wildcats.
Eddie Sutton's lessons were sound. The Wildcats responded well. The record says so. You don't compile a 21-2 SEC mark by playing so-so.
Fans, coaches and even the media, not just in Kentucky but around the country expected a 20-win season at best from the Wildcats.
As the season wore on, it quickly became apparent this Kentucky team would be a special one.
By tournament time, Kentucky had advanced to a No. 3 national ranking, not because of an awesome inside game, but because UK simply kept finding new ways to win basketball games.
It all started with a controversial, ex-perimential three-guard offense because three of Sutton's five best performers throughout the preseason workout just happen to be guards.
Sutton, himself, said the three-guard lineup would have to be scraped soon after the beginning of the season because the Cats would need extra strength in the paint.
Sutton was patiently waiting for one of three players to step forward and take command.
Sooner or later either Richard Madison, Cedric Jenkins or Robert Lock would become a starter. All three were impressive at times, but none sustained their star long enough to put either James Blackmon or Roger Harden or Ed Davender on the bench.
Kansas gave the Cats their first taste of defeat, thanks to the powerful inside movement of Greg Dreiling and Danny Manning. The Cats were no match and absorbed their only sound defeat of the season.
Because the guards played so well, Sutton stayed with them. They won and won and won. The three-guard offense continued its winning way through January, February and on into March.
Until that fateful Saturday afternoon in Atlanta. Oh, there had been times when the guards didn't play super basketball, but they performed more than their share of miracles.
But last Saturday, the Cats ran out of magic. Oh, the effort was there all right. I cannot remember a Kentucky team which played with more intensity than UK did the first six minutes of the game against LSU.
But LSU withstood the challenge.
It was forty minutes of grueling warfare. Ironically, it was a phsycial game, the kind that Rick Robey and Mike Phillips would have cherished. It was a game in which finesse players had little chance of surviving.
To be honest, neither team played particularly well. Both played as though their very lives depended on the outcome.
Kenny Walker was the Ail-American everyone knew he was, but his teammates were unable to involve him in the game as much as they would have liked.
Perhaps no one tried harder than senior guard Roger Harden. He's the young man who was bold enough back in October to predict that UK would go to the Final Four.
At the end of the line, he was begging for the basketball, in hopes of having one last miracle left in his collegiate basketball career. He wanted all so badly to get one last shot at Dallas.
Eight previous times that afternoon Harden had fired up shots. He was true on six of them. As the lingo goes, he was looking for his shots. He never got his hands on the ball.
Harden was speechless, just like his senior running mates - Walker and LeRoy Byrd.
Inside the Kentucky locker room, Byrd's face was covered with a towel as his body stretched out on a trainer's table.
Harden's reddened face told the final score as he held back the moisture in his eyes.
Walker once again tried to keep a stiff upper lip.
Destination Dallas was nothing but a bitter memory.
Kentucky hit a cold spell near the end of the contest and LSU didn't. That was the difference in the game. LSU goes on to a date with Louisville in the Final Four and Kentucky puts the wraps on a very successful season which ended in tears at The Omni.
Another rematch for Kentucky and Louisville was in the wings had UK defeated LSU Saturday, but the Tigers' win now leaves the Southeastern Conference with a single club in the Final Four.
Louisville took care of the other SEC foe by holding off Auburn in the championship game of the West Regional at Houston.
Denny Crum's Cardinals have been on a tear the past month and appear to have the momentum to go all the way in Dallas this weekend.
That is unless the Cardinals take Dale Brown and his Tigers for granted.
Without doubt, LSU is the one member of the Final Four which most everyone gives no chance of winning all the marbles.
Don't count Brown short. He's at his finest when his back is against the wall. Sure, his
back isn't against the wall right now. But it was when the Tigers started their late season rally.
Sure, LSU beat Purdue and Memphis State on their home floor, but the Tigers whipped Georgia Tech on the Yellowjackets' homecourt and finally turned the tables on Kentucky after three straight losses to the Cats.
More importantly, LSU won its last two games without the great John Williams playing very well.
As far as Louisville is concerned, the Cardinals should be in better shape matching up with the Tigers in a physical game than UK. The Cards will probably get better play off the bench than UK did and it's doubtful if Louisville's outside shooting will suffer as badly as Kentucky's did Saturday.
Still, it's too bad that Kentucky and Louisville didn't get to meet a second time in Dallas. Louisville won and Kentucky didn't.
Both Kenny Walker and Winston Bennett earned All-Southeast Region tourney honors in Atlanta for their play, but the loss in the finals probably cost Roger Harden a spot on the team although his play time again kept UK in the championship game.
While Kentucky's other guards were hitting only six of 18 shots, Harden's six of eight prevented LSU from totally ignoring UK's outside game.
Inside, Kenny Walker was doing his usual job, but managed only eleven field goal attempts with eight of those coming in the first half. He scored 20 points, but only four came after intermission.
Bennett was a battler on the boards, getting 12 rebounds (same as he did two nights earlier against Alabama) but his three for 13 field goal shooting suffered.
Kentucky hit only 46 percent from the field. However, LSU didn't perform any better from the field, hitting only 45 percent.
You might say the game was won or lost at the free throw line and in turnovers. LSU hit 11 of 14 from the line while UK (which suffered at the charity strip more than once down the stretch) hit only nine of 16.
Kentucky was forced into 12 turnovers compared to nine for LSU.
Also named to the all-tourney team were Don Redden (MVP) and Ricky Blanton of LSU and Georgia Tech's Mark Price.
So often, after a loss, you hear complaints about officiating and how it cost the game.
Right here and now, the officiating of Hank Nichols, John Clougherty and Tom Fraim was as good as we've seen all season long.
It tended to allow the teams to play more physical, but the game was called consistently and fairly.
The officiating crew was definitely a major improvement over much of the officiating we had previously witnessed in the tournament.
I'd take that level of officiating anytime,
anywhere and know I got a good fair shake.
HITS AND MISSES . . . With the season now behind the Cats, the UK staff will be hitting the recruiting trails hot and heavy between now and the middle of April, the time when high school players may sign a national letter of intent . . . UK assistant James Dickey was out in Hutchinson, Kansas last week attending the national junior college tournament. A couple UK prospects were playing  in that event,  including Independence's Harvey Grant,  the JC youngster who originally signed and attended Clemson for a year. He is considered the top power forward in the juco ranks this year . . . Kentucky is also high on a 6-5 swingman by the name of Chris Blocker of Southern Idaho Junior College. Kentucky is still hoping to sign at least one point guard. At the top of the list apparently is Tulsa, Oklahoma's Kevin Pritchard although one recruiting service says Pritchard will choose among Kansas. Tulsa and Kansas State UK has also been recruiting 6-5 Derrick Miller of Savannah, Georgia. One recruiting expert said the choice was likely to fall down among DePaul, South Carolina and Kentucky. Now, the same recruiting service - Ail-Star Sports - has replaced Kentucky with the name of Oklahoma State, where former UK assistant Leonard Hamilton is now head coach. Earlier, reports were that South Carolina was eliminated from the race because Bill Foster was axed. Miller, according to our sources, liked Foster. Supposedly, Georgetown was once in the running . . . Pulaski County star Reggie Hanson's stock went up a great deal last week when he led his team to the Kentucky state high school championship and Hanson was named the tourney's MVP. He scored 92 points. Many believe he will really develop once he puts on extra weight during the next couple years ... It was like old times at the state tourney in Lexington as rural schools challenged the big city boys and won out against. It was a bitter one Saturday morning when Louisville PRP edged Hazard in the semi-finals by two points after a couple controversial calls. Hazard had been the crowd favorite, having won its first state tournament game in twenty years. At one time, Hazard was one of the state tourney's two kingpins, with Owensboro being the other. Pulaski County, from rural Southcentral Kentucky, claimed all the marbles with Dave Fraley (who once coached at Powell County in Eastern Kentucky's 14th Region) at the helm . . . While Hanson was the star of this team, keep your eye on junior guard Shannon Fraley, the coach's son who is going to be one fine college guard somewhere year after next. . . And for you real basketball fanatics, you'll have an opportunity to see Hanson and his Pulaski County team play the Indiana high school state champions at Lexington's Rupp Arena on April 5. It's a new series created by the high school athletic associations of the two states and the first an-
(Continued On Page 20) Marc/1,29, (9$f
Walker, Bennett Key Big NCAA Win
UK Storms Past Alabama Fourth Time
Thanks to a well-rounded scoring attack, Kentucky employed four players in double figures enroute to scoring a 68-63 victory over Alabama in the NCAA Southeast Regional semi-finals Thursday in Atlanta.
Kenny Walker paved the way with 22 points, but got ample help from Winston Bennett, Ed Davender and James Blackmon who scored 14, 13 and 11 points respectively.
The victory was Kentucky's fourth straight over the Crimson Tide this season and came on the heels of a three-point victory in the championship game of the Southeastern Conference at Lexington's Rupp Arena.
As had been the case so many times this season, defense was again the key to UK's success. This time, the Cats held 'Bama to a 42.6 shooting percentage and that pretty much told the story.
"I thought the big key to this basketball game, and it's been that way almost every time we win, was our defense," said UK coach Eddie Sutton. "Our defense was solid." Sutton, though, pointed out that the Cats could have made the win a much easier
M.ABAHA \V>\ J.im f armer-
task if they could have hit their free throws, a part of the UK game which suffered terribly during the NCAA tourney. In three of UK's four games, the Cats hit under 68 percent from the line.
Poor Free Throw Shooting Hurt UK - Sutton
"Our team was solid defensively, but we made it hard on ourselves when we weren't able to convert free throws," added Sutton.
The Cats almost let 'Bama back in the game during the final three minutes when UK missed five of its last six free throws, including three bonus situations.
Although Alabama won the battle of the boards, it was Kentucky which claimed the all-important offensive rebounds and putbacks which enabled the Cats to skin the Tide a fourth straight time this season.
Most of the first half was played on even terms although each club experienced a strong rally.
With Kentucky nursing a 20-15 lead at the 10:41 mark on Ed Davender's jumper, the Cats took a brief vacation.
Over the next three and half minutes, Alabama outscored the Cats 8-0 and took a 23-20 advantage, on baskets from Terry Coner, Jim Farmer, James Jackson and Derrick McKey.
Enough was enough for Eddie Sutton who called a timeout to halt the rally. At that point, 'Bama was hitting a blazing 55.6 percent from the field on 10 of 18.
Kentucky Goes On A 12-0 Streak
Kentucky, though, went on a tear of its own over the next five minutes and sprinted out to a 32-23 lead with a 12-0 spurt.
Walker scored half of the dozen points while Winston Bennett scored a couple field goals and James Blackmon put the icing on the cake with a layup at 2:28 before Alabama's
Jenkins Battles Farmer
Wimp Sanderson could signal for a timeout.
The Tide refused to quit and came right back to narrow the deficit to four points (32-28) at the halfway point and even had one chance to cut the lead to two.
Halftime stats indicated it would be another buzzer beater for the two Southeastern Conference powers. While Kentucky was hitting at 53.6 percent from the field, Alabama was connecting on 48.1 percent. But the Tide outrebounded UK 15-13. It was that tight a game.
Perhaps the key to the first half was Kentucky's ability to contain the terrific inside 'Bama game of Buck Johnson and Derrick McKey below their season averages. The couple had been held to seven of 15 shooting from the field, no free throws and only eight rebounds.
Meanwhile, UK's counterparts were scoring 18 points on eight of 14 from the and eight rebounds.
he field II March 2$} /?o