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Cats roll past Meade in summer action

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By John Herndon

The calendar and thermometer both said June but Anderson County basketball was going strong last Thursday as the Bearcats routed visiting Meade County 71-52 in a summer league game.

While Anderson coach Glen Drury keeps not statistics during off-season play, it was easy to see that the Bearcats were playing very well against a team that won 20 games last year. But the game also underscored that summer league games are not the same as the varsity action in late February and March.

"Their coach told me that they were missing one of their better players," Drury said.

Still, Anderson showed there should be a lot ot like about the team this winter.

"There have been very few times when we have had all the players here, but when we have, we have played very well," Drury said.

Through nine games, Anderson had posted a 5-4 mark but did not have its entire complement of players until last week when last year's second leading scorer, Jacob Russell, joined the team after the baseball season was over.

Anderson has beaten Henry County, Lawrence County, Western Hills and a team from Tennessee in addition to Meade. The Bearcats lost to Franklin County, Male, Ballard and St. Xavier.

"It is a lot different (than the regular season)," Drury said. "There is a lot more transition game because people are not as strong defensively yet. There is also a conditioning factor."

Drury said he looks for individual improvement and with the Bearcats having to replace two holes in the starting lineup he is getting that improvement from guards Allen Warford and Landon Jenkins. He said Ben Walker and Grant Cox have both shown some athleticism that could be major factors this winter while sophomore Eric Newton has been very consistent while senior Walt Ruggles is making a good progress.

Nick Humphries, who started some games last year, has been injured and unable to play recently.

Senior C.J. Penny, ranked in everyone's top five players in the state next year, has been impressive. "He has moments when he just dominates a game," Drury said.

The Bearcats will play up until the dead period starts on June 25.