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Golden Eagles make third-straight state tournament appearance

JOHNSON COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) -- The Johnson Central Golden Eagles are Rupp-bound for the third year in a row.

They are back-to-back-to-back Region 15 champions.

“It's kind of surreal, when you win the first one it's complete jubilation,” Golden Eagles head coach Tommy McKenzie said. “I think when you have the sustained success that we've had here, it's satisfaction more so and I thought our guys have done a good job about not being complacent with the success that we've had.”

The Eagles made early exits the last two times they went to the Sweet 16, losing in the first round in both years.

“We want to make a statement in Rupp Arena,” senior forward Nick McKenzie said. “We're coming to win ball games. We're not just there to make it there. We want to make a run at a State Championship.”

Johnson Central put on a dominant performance in this year’s 15th region tournament, averaging 78 points in three games while only allowing 47 points per contest.

“We took it one step at a time,” senior center and Marshall university commit Shane Hall said. “We came to practice every day ready to work, ready to play in the Regional Tournament.”

“A lot of hard work in the off season and just working hard and getting ready and prepared for this,” junior forward Kyle Gullett said. “This is what you play for. This is awesome. 3rrd time in a row, it gets better every time.”

Johnson Central will play Campbell County in the opening round at the Sweet 16.

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