By Nathan Hutchinson
Register Sports Editor
MADISON COUNTY —
When the Indians took on Franklin County less than three weeks ago in Richmond, they put together one of their best performances of the season.
Madison Central shot 63 percent in the first half, had a 39-point halftime lead and forced 26 turnovers in a very, very impressive 85-32 win.
The victory was the most lopsided of the season for the Indians (25-5).
Central and Franklin County (9-16) are set to meet again today in the first round of the 11th Region Tournament at McBrayer Arena — and despite the outcome of the first game, the Indians aren’t looking past the Flyers.
“We really haven’t even talked about (that first game) to be honest,” Central coach Allen Feldhaus said. “We are more concerned with our mindset. I didn’t even want (our guys) to watch that film. They really didn’t even compete that hard against us, truthfully. So, we are really just worried about us.”
Game time is set for 8:15 p.m.
The winner advances to face either Dunbar (19-9) or Henry Clay (22-9) in Friday’s semifinals.
The Indians haven’t won an 11th Region title since 2006 and the first step toward another championship is getting past Franklin County.
Last year, Central fell in the semifinals of the 11th Region Tournament to Woodford County, a team they had beat relatively easily in the regular season.
“Hopefully we’ve learned our lesson,” Feldhaus. “So, we aren’t looking past anybody. There are more upset in the first round then in another other round. I think we will be ready.”
The Indians rolled to an 18th-straight 44th District Tournament title last week, blasting Berea Community, 83-36, and then Madison Southern in the championship game, 80-40.
In the finals, Ken-Jah Bosley had a game-best 22 points for Central, while Quan Taylor added 16 points and senior point guard Dominique Hawkins had 11 points.
In their blowout win over the Flyers on Feb. 8, the Indians took control early and never looked back. Central scored 11 of the first 13 points of the game and had a 26-6 lead after back-to-back dunks by Taylor late in the first quarter.
In the first half, Franklin County had eight field goals and 18 turnovers.
Central had 12 players score and get a team-best 21 points and six assists from Bosley and 14 points from Bosley.
“Quan had three or four dunks in a row,” Feldhaus said. “They tried to zone us and we hit some threes early in the game. Then we started hurting them inside. I’d say we are going to see some zone. They are going to pack it in and make us hit some jumpshots.”
Franklin County has three players averaging double-figures in scoring this season — Rylan Rowe (17.5 ppg), Lorenzo McCaskell (12.3 ppg) and Chris Roberts (10.2 ppg).
Roberts also averages 8.1 rebounds a game.
The Flyers have just nine wins on the season, but did stun Anderson County (21-4), 79-71, two weeks ago and have won two of their past three games. Franklin County defeated Frankfort, 76-53, in the opening round of the 41st District Tournament before losing to Woodford County, 72-64, in the championship game.