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Saturday, January 4, 2020

Bluebirds Move to 12-0 with Convincing Victory

Highlands to Play for City of Middletown Title on Saturday

PHOTO: G. Michael Graham, Fort Thomas Matters. Highlands senior Jack Delagrange (left) gets back on defense in a recent game.
The Highlands Bluebirds boys basketball team will play for another tournament championship after a convincing 90-59 victory over the Lexington Lafayette Generals on Friday at Louisville Eastern.

Highlands stayed undefeated at 12-0 and will face the host Eastern Eagles (10-4) from the 7th Region in the City of Middletown Holiday Classic championship game at 5 p.m. The Bluebirds have scored 85 or more points nine times this season.

Highlands came out of the game strong and scored the most points of any team against the Generals (4-9). The Bluebirds made 30-of-50 shots for 60 percent including 14 three-pointers and 15-of-19 free throws for 79 percent. Lafayette employs a 2-2-1 press and play a 1-2-2 zone.

"The floor opened for us and we made some threes early," said Kevin Listerman, Highlands Head Coach. "We scored 23, 24 points in the first quarter. We were up eight or 10 after the first quarter and we just didn't look back."

The Bluebirds also had 24 rebounds, 24 assists, 15 steals and just eight turnovers. Junior point guard Sam Vinson scored 19 points and had nine rebounds, nine assists and six steals. Junior forward Luke Muller led the Bluebirds in scoring with 25 making eight three-point shots. Senior guard Hunter Ahlfeld scored nine points and junior forward Bryson Cody scored eight.

Senior forward/center Ray Surratt led the Generals with 32 points. No one else scored more than eight.

The reserves saw some action in the game. But players such as junior Daniel Buchannan help prepare the main players to play games.

"We take a lot of pride (in practice)," Buchannan said. "Putting them through hard work in practice is just nice seeing it all pay off in games."

A win Saturday would mark the third holiday tournament crown for the Bluebirds. Prior to this season, Highlands had not won a holiday tournament since the 2005-06 season.

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