The Pikeville Panthers held off a late charge by the Lawrence County Bulldogs to win the school's first 15th region All A Championship in 20 years by a score of 68-67 at the East Kentucky Expo Center.
Panther senior Ray Kasongo was the story of the game, finishing with 19 points, 19 rebounds, and 11 blocks as he dominated on both ends of the floor and Lawrence County really had no answer for the 6'8" Canadian.
Pikeville held leads at the end of every quarter, with the largest being a 52-41 difference at the end of the 3rd, but there was no quit in the Bulldogs.
Lawrence County's Robert Dalton had 9 of his 19 points in the 4th quarter as the Bulldogs tied the game late, but the leading free throw shooter in the state of Kentucky wasn't going to let the Panthers relinquish the lead.
Ethan Rowe was 5 for 5 from the stripe in the 4th, finished with a game high 21 points. Rowe was 7-7 from the free throw line for the game.
The Pikeville Panthers will now play in the All A State Tournament in Frankfort on Thursday at 5pm vs. Louisville Holy Cross.
Lawrence County plays at Raceland Tuesday night at 7:30pm.
Lawrence County (12-9) 13 17 11 26 67- Chafins 10, R. Dalton 19, Richardson 13, Kiser 9, Cyrus 5, T. Dalton 11
Pikeville (13-7) 18 19 15 16 68- May 7, Silvers 10, Johnson 5, Hamilton 6, Rowe 21, Kasongo 19
Here are highlights, including the last minute.
Listen to what championship coach Bart Williams had to say about the win for his program, the play of Ray Kasongo and Ethan Rowe, and also watch him get tackled during the interview.