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Salyersville Independent


Hornets knock off Cardinals, capture 15th Region title

Magoffin County captured its first 15th Region boys’ basketball title at Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville on Monday, March 11. Photo || Jim Arnett

PIKEVILLE — Magoffin County is the 15th Region boys’ basketball champion.

Determined Magoffin County defeated 57th District nemesis Martin County 67-57 in the 15th Region Boys’ Basketball Tournament title game at Appalachian Wireless Arena on Monday, March 11.

The Hornets knocked off the Cardinals in the fourth meeting between the two teams since Tuesday, Jan. 30. Prior to the region title game, Martin County had notched three wins over Magoffin County in the 2023-24 boys’ high school basketball season.

Magoffin County captured its first region boys’ basketball title in 100 years.

“I’m so proud of these kids,” Magoffin County Coach Scott Castle commented, following his team’s 15th Region championship-clinching victory. “They come in and work hard everyday.”

The Hornets edged the Cardinals 16-15 in the opening quarter of the 15th Region title game.

Stretching its lead out to a double-digit advantage, Magoffin County led 30-19 at halftime.

Magoffin County, which finished runner-up to Martin County in the 57th District Boys’ Basketball Tournament, led 44-39 at the end of the third quarter.

The Hornets outrebounded the Cardinals 28-23. Magoffin County shot 58.8 percent from the field. Converting from various parts of the court, Magoffin County shot 82.1 percent from the free throw line.

Aden Barnett, who was named the 15th Region Boys’ Basketball Tournament MVP, scored a game-high 34 points to lead the Hornets.

Along with Barnett reaching double figures for Magoffin County, Walker Russell netted 16 points.

Aiding Magoffin County in its historic win, Grayson Whitaker posted six points, Zane Whitaker added five points, Ethan Salyer contributed four points and Reed Meadows chipped in two points.

Luke Hale scored 13 points to pace Martin County in the 15th Region title game. Finishing directly behind Hale in Martin County’s scoring column, Brayden McKenzie and Jacob Sturgell netted 12 points apiece.

Barely missing double figures for Martin County, Peyton Davis tallied nine points while Devan Maynard added eight points.

Chipping in offensively for Martin County, Bryson Dials contributed three points.

Magoffin County will meet 14th Region champion Perry County Central in the opening game of the KHSAA Boys’ Sweet 16 State Basketball Tournament at Rupp Arena in Lexington at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, March 20.

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