WDN Sports Editor
Goody, Ky. – After making it to the KHSAA 3A state championship last year, Bluegrass Preps has selected Belfry High school fourth in its class AAA preseason rankings.
The Pirates finished last season with a 10-5 record and were defeated 46-7 by Central during the Kentucky High School Athletic Association’s state championship game at Western Kentucky University.
Head coach Phillip Haywood is known for his tough schedules and this year is no different.
The Bucs lost 20 seniors from the state runner-up squad but returns 15 to lead the 2011 team.
The Pirates open up with Harrison County Aug. 26 in the Community Trust Bank Pike County Bowl.
BHS is hits the road Sept. 2 battling 6A powerhouse Henry Clay. HCHS finished last season 9-3 losing a close game during the second round of the playoffs 21-19 against Simon Kenton.
Belfry then faces three huge rivals.
On Sept. 9, the Bucs travel to Prestonsburg. The Blackcats came to Belfry’s house and defeated them 21-6…not an easy feat. P’burg lost to Corbin 48-14 during the third round of the 2A playoffs.
Next up, the Pikeville Panthers...
While the Panthers took a beating at the hands of BHS last season 54-24, you can never count Pikeville out when these squads meet. PHS finished 8-5 last year and made it to the third round of the class 1A playoffs where the Hazard Bulldogs ended Pikeville’s season 59-34.
And on Sept. 23, the Cardinals of Sheldon Clark roll into Pond Creek.
These two have developed a huge rivalry and it is always a battle when they meet. After a poor showing in the second half, the Bucs lost the battle 22-6 to the Sheldon Clark on the road. This year, the Pirates seek revenge on their homefield. The Cardinals lost the second round of the playoffs 15-12 to Russell.
And the battles keep raging.
Belfry finishes the regular season against Johnson Central. The Pirates were handedly defeated 42-7 last year. This year the Golden Eagles come to Pond Creek Oct. 28. JCHS finished the year 10-3 and lost to Highlands 21-14 in the third round of the 3A playoffs.
Ranked above the Pirates in the preseason poll are Central (1), Bell County (2) and Paducah Tilghman (3).