What a great time to be a fan of Warren County athletics

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 17, 2005

[2/17/05] During this “rollover” time of year, when winter sports hit their conclusions and spring sports begin, it usually makes for busy days. Thanks to a late push by our basketball teams, things are really hectic.

Tonight, Porters Chapel’s boys can advance to the overall state tournament in basketball. The team’s 16-15 record will not turn many heads, but the fact is that the Eagles can finish no worse than fifth in the Academy-A State Tournament.

With a win tonight over host Delta, the Eagles will continue their historic run. Before this season, no PCA boys basketball team has gone that far. First-year coach Mike Grzanich pushed the right buttons at the right time.

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Another first-year coach, Drew McBrayer, has the St. Aloysius Flashes and Lady Flashes in the second round of their division tournament. Both teams face tough battles tonight against top-seeded West Lincoln, but by winning Tuesday, the teams have already qualified for the state tournament, which begins on Monday.

On Friday, Vicksburg High and Warren Central’s boys will battle on the hardwood for a division championship at 7:30 p.m. The Gators have won two of three from Warren Central this season, but all the games have been close.

Vicksburg entered the division tournament as the last seed and had a losing record. Warren Central needed a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to subdue Forest Hill. The winner earns a home game in the state playoffs next week.

Before the boys tip things off, though, Warren Central’s girls will take to the floor against Natchez at 6 p.m. The Lady Vikes are searching for an unprecedented third straight division championship.

All that basketball leads straight into baseball and softball, which starts around the county with St. Aloysius coach Clint Wilkerson’s debut against Riverside at 5 p.m. on Friday. Wilkerson has a young team with high expectations.

Warren Central and Vicksburg begin baseball on Saturday with the Vikings getting tested early. Perennial power Oak Grove and Gulfport are scheduled for a doubleheader at Viking Field. Vicksburg opens with a doubleheader against Franklin County on Saturday as well.

St. Aloysius and Warren Central will each play two softball games at Bazinsky Park on Saturday making for a whirlwind weekend of local sports.

Even the weather seems to want to cooperate. Mention of rain early in the week has dissipated.

Play Ball!