Fairdale’s back-to-back feat has aged well

March 17, 2016 FieldsColumn

Stan Hardin

Stan Hardin

Today is the 25th anniversary of Fairdale’s completing its back-to-back Sweet Sixteen championships.

Stan Hardin’s Bulldogs beat Tates Creek 67-63 in the finals of the 74th Boys’ State Tournament in Rupp Arena on March 16, 1991 to become the first team to win consecutive state titles since Male did it in 1970 and ’71.

Fairdale’s terrific trio of Jermaine Brown, Maurice Morris and Carlos Turner combined for 40 points and 22 rebounds in the victory over Tates Creek. Nolan Barger’s Commodores were led by Darrin Horn’s 23 points and 7 rebounds, and John Mark Stuart’s 20 points.

Is Hardin surprised that, a quarter of a century later, no boys’ team has repeated as champ?

“What’s amazing to me is that it’s only been done once in the last 45 years,” Hardin said. 

There have been close calls. Scott County won it all in 1998 and was runner-up in 1999. Mason County won it all in 2003 and was runner-up in 2004. Warren Central won it all in 2004 and was runner-up in 2005.

“There have been some awfully good teams that haven’t been able to do it,” Hardin said. “I’m starting to think it may never be done again.”

That said, Hardin thinks Scott County might have a shot at pulling off the rare feat. Billy Hicks, who coached the Cardinals to state titles in 1998 and 2007, has a young team that was 11th Region runners-up this year.

“If they win it next year they might be able to do it. Billy’s got local kids who’ve grown up there and know the school’s tradition.”

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