Shelby Valley held an advantage in bench scoring. But in the end, it didn't matter. Jeremy Preece added 19 points for the Cardinals and freshman point guard Jayrd Crum finished with nine.
The Wildcats entered the game with a perfect record against 15th Region competition. That perfect record took a big hit Thursday night in the form of an opening round knockout punch delivered by the Sheldon Clark Cardinals.
Sheldon Clark (6-10) is fresh off a 57th District championship season and an appearance in the 15th Region Tournament Semifinals. Early on during the 2004-05, injuries have hit the Cardinals hard and it shows in their current losing record.
For Shelby Valley (15-4), senior Patrick Tackett accounted for the bulk of the scoring. Tackett had one of the best games of his career as his team 's fell short of making a second trip to Richmond and the Touchstone Energy All "A" Classic state tournament. Kris Bentley, now in his second and final season as a Shelby Valley Wildcat, added eight points in the loss to Sheldon Clark. Mitch Riddle tossed in seven points for Shelby Valley and Kelsey Friend scored six. Eight different Shelby Valley players scored as first-year Wildcat head coach Jason Booher searched for the right combination to counter Sheldon Clark's stout attack.
Sheldon Clark brushed back Shelby Valley several times. The Cardinals countered several Shelby Valley runs - especially late in the game.
Sheldon Clark outscored Shelby Valley 24-20 in the fourth quarter.
The win over Sheldon Clark earned the Cardinals a date Friday night in the 15th Region All "A" Classic semifinals against South Floyd. The other semifinals matchup pitted Pikeville against Paintsville. The tournament's championship game was scheduled for last night.
15th Region All "A" Classic
SHELBY VALLEY (15-4) - Bentley 8, Friend 5, Tackett 30, M. Riddle 7, C. Riddle 2, Johnson 5, Potter 2, Bryant 3.
SHELDON CLARK (6-10) - Preece 19, Crum 9, May 26, Howell 6, Hammond 4, Johnson 5.
Shelby Valley............14 10 19 20-63
Sheldon Clark............14 19 12 24-69