No. 5 Trinity, No. 6 Bullitt East, No. 10 Fern Creek, No. 11 Male headline field
The 69th annual Republic Bank Louisville Invitational Tournament will resume Friday at Valley High School and feature four of the top 11 boys basketball teams in the state according to The Courier-Journal’s Litkenhous Ratings.
No. 5 Trinity, No. 6 Bullitt East, No. 10 Fern Creek and No. 11 Male will be in action, and each could advance to Saturday morning’s semifinals. The championship game is set for 8 p.m. Saturday.
Seven of the top eight seeds advanced to the quarterfinals. St. Xavier, seeded No. 11, is the lone outsider after knocking off sixth-seeded North Bullitt 63-45 on Tuesday.
Here’s a brief look at each quarterfinal:
* Doss (13-3) vs. Male (13-2), 4 p.m.: Doss enters with a five-game winning streak. Senior Kenyi Bryant, who transferred from Cincinnati’s Mount Healthy before the season, hit 4 of 6 3-point tries and scored a game-high 20 points in Tuesday’s 51-39 victory over Pleasure Ridge Park.
Male has won four in a row and is off to its best start since the 2007-08 squad also started 13-2. Senior Alex Cook, a Bellarmine University signee, leads the Bulldogs in scoring (18.1 ppg) and rebounding (8.7 rpg).
* Eastern (10-5) vs. Trinity (14-3), 5:30 p.m.: Eastern slipped past Manual 56-54 on Tuesday on Javen Rushin’s buzzer-beating putback. Senior Kobey Jones (12.8 ppg) and junior Chance Moore (10.5 ppg) are the Eagles’ top scorers.
Trinity bounced back from a loss to rival St. Xavier with a 73-62 victory over Valley on Wednesday. The Shamrocks are shooting 43.4 percent from 3-point range and are led by senior Gabe Schmitt (12.6 ppg) and juniors Jacob King (15.7 ppg) and Lucas Burkman (12.3 ppg).
* Fern Creek (10-6) vs. Ballard (10-6), 7 p.m.: Fern Creek shot just 30.4 percent but picked up a 52-44 victory over No. 12 Central on Tuesday. Senior Tony Washington (12.9 ppg) and sophomores Anthony Wales (12.6 ppg) and Ahmad Price (10.2 ppg) lead the Tigers in scoring.
Junior Clivonte Patterson posted 21 points and eight rebounds as Ballard beat Waggener 67-57 on Wednesday. The Bruins are showing signs of developing a reliable scoring trio in junior guard Jamil Wilson (18.9 ppg), senior sharpshooter Brian Alvey (12.7 ppg) and Patterson (11.1 ppg).
* St. Xavier (11-5) vs. Bullitt East (14-2), 8:45 p.m.: St. Xavier senior guard Connor McKim has been on fire lately, scoring 31 points in a 55-48 victory over Trinity last Friday and a career-high 37 points in Tuesday’s 63-45 victory over North Bullitt.
Bullitt East enters with a five-game winning streak after Wednesday’s 75-54 victory over Butler. Senior guard Tyler Sharpe is averaging 21.8 points per game and is shooting 35.3 percent (47 of 133) from 3-point range.