If it was difficult to find John Tinsley over the last few days, there is little wonder why. Tinsley and his Glasgow High School Scotties will be participating this week in the Touchstone Energy All “A” Classic State Basketball Tournament in Frankfort, and the coach has been diligently preparing his team. With 16 of the best teams in the state all vying for the tournament crown, Tinsley knows the key to surviving and advancing in the tournament is preparation.
“This is a quality field with very good teams, and Betsy Lane is one of them. Bishop Brossart is No. 1 in the 11th Region and Jackson County, I believe, is No. 1 in the 14th Region,” Tinsley said. “And in a setting like this, you will always find three, four or five teams that have made good runs heading into the tournament. It always seems like it happens that way.”
“(When getting ready for the tournament) You try to find out what you can to be able to solve your opponents’ strengths, but you don’t get away from what you do well. There is a fine line there. The bottom line is you have to find a way to make sure your team plays its best. I am a guy about preparation, so we’re going to prepare as much as we can, focusing on executing what we do.”
The Scotties open the tournament Thursday at 4 p.m. CST at the Frankfort Convention Center.
Lately, the Scotties have been doing what they do very well. Glasgow is 11-8 on the season with victories in four of its last seven games. The Scotties rolled through the All “A” Fourth Region Tournament with wins over Metcalfe County, Monroe County and Russellville.
“I definitely think (the toughness of) our schedule helps us going into a tournament like this,” Tinsley explained. “Playing night in and night out in the Fourth Region is tough.
“Betsy Lane is a very good, very smart team. But I venture to say they wouldn’t be 16-3 in the Fourth Region. Now, they’re very good. I am not taking anything away from them. They’ve got two scorers that average 18 a game. They’re old-school smart.”
Betsy Lane will be heading into Thursday’s matchup with 10 victories in its last 12 games. However, the Bobcats lost their last game, a 44-40 decision to Pike County Central.
“We’re playing well right now,” Tinsley said. “To come through the Fourth Region in any tournament, you better be playing well. There are so many good teams in this tournament, we really can’t worry about anything but Betsy Lane. (Once that game is done) Then, you can worry about your next opponent.”
As competitive as Tinsley is, the veteran coach is looking at this week’s tournament as another test his team can use to get better. In the big picture, the All “A” Classic can be a valuable lesson for the Scotties as they look to the KHSAA postseason.
“(The All “A” Classic) It is a tournament that prepares you, gets you better for the end of the year,” Tinsley relayed. “All this can do, no matter how deep we run, is help us get ready for the district and regional tournaments at the end of the year.”
If the Scotties beat Betsy Lane, they will play either Jackson County (15-5) or Somerset (11-9) on Friday at 7 p.m.