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John Pelphrey in the Boys’ Sweet Sixteen, 1987

Posted on March 14, 2018 | in Uncategorized | by

Paintsville’s John Pelphrey went over, under and through the Owensboro defense during the second round of the Kentucky Boys’ Sweet Sixteen Basketball Tournament, March 27, 1987 in Lexington’s Rupp Arena. Pelphrey, a 6-foot-7 all-state senior forward and a Mr. Basketball candidate, scored 24 points, leading Paintsville past No. 1-ranked Owensboro, 58-52. Unfortunately the Tigers lost the next day in the semifinals to Ballard, 61-54. Pelphrey, who would go on to play college basketball at UK, averaged 21 points during his three games in the tourney and was named was named to the all-tournament team. He was named to the honorary squad along with two other future Wildcats, Deron Feldhaus and Richie Farmer. Farmer led his Clay County team to the state title. The three would later become part of Kentucky’s 1991-92 senior class, also known as “The Unforgettables” – four UK seniors that went through tough times when UK was on probation but hung around long enough to see the program resurrected. Pelphrey’s No. 34 jersey is retired and he is one of 42 former UK players, coaches, and contributors honored in Rupp Arena with a banner hanging from the rafters. He is in his second year as the associate head men’s basketball coach at the University of Alabama. The 2018 Boys’ Sweet Sixteen begins today at Rupp Arena. Photo by Ron Garrison | staff

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