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Touchstone Energy All ‘A’ Classic preview

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• The tournament begins Thursday morning with opening-round games. The quarterfinals will be held on Friday with the semifinals on Saturday night. The championship game will be played on Sunday afternoon at 2:30 p.m. All games will be played at the Frankfort Convention Center.
• The Eighth Region representative has reached the quarterfinals in four of the past six years. The last time a team from the Eighth Region went to the semifinals was Walton-Verona in 2004.
• For Middlesboro, this is their first time winning the 13th Region title. They reached the regional finals in 2009 before losing 59-58 to Pineville.
• A 13th Region team has won the All A state championship. The Harlan Green Dragons won the title in 1994 and 1995. Gallatin County is the only team from the Eighth Region to reach the championship game. The Wildcats lost the title game in 1999 to University Heights.
• Twice in three trips to the All A State Tournament, Owen County has lost to the eventual champion. In 1996, University Heights defeated the Rebels in the semifinals before winning the title. Last year, Covington Holy Cross beat Owen County in the quarterfinals before reaching and winning the championship game.
• Owen County is one of just four teams making a return trip to the All A State Tournament this year. The other three are Bardstown, Louisville Collegiate and Bishop Brossart. In fact, Collegiate and Brossart will again meet in the first round this year. Collegiate won last year’s contest 57-52 in overtime.
• Owen County is 3-3 overall in the All A State Tournament.
• This will be the 18th appearance for University Heights in the All A State Tournament. It is the most appearances by any team. Overall, they are 47-9 in the tournament with eight state championships. Harlan, Lexington Catholic and Shelby Valley have each won the title twice.