Kent Martin grew up in Kentucky and his father was a high school basketball coach in the Bluegrass State, so it’s obvious that he knows a thing or two about the sport.
Martin, in his first year as coach of the Porter-Gaud girls team, has his squad headed in the right direction at this stage of the season. The Cyclones beat crosstown rival Ashley Hall, 60-35, Saturday afternoon to up their record to 9-2 and reach today’s championship of the Porter-Gaud Holiday Classic.
“My dad coached in Frankfort, and he’s traveled to Charleston to see me coach,” said Martin, who is a College of Charleston graduate. “This is the first time he’s seen me coach, so I just wanted everything to go smoothly.”
The Porter-Gaud girls reached the final of their tournament for the first time and will play Charlotte Country Day in the 2 p.m. championship.
The Porter-Gaud boys also reached the final with a victory over crosstown foe First Baptist.
The Cyclones will play North Cross, which is located in Roanoke, Va. Tip-off for the boys championship is slated for 3:30 p.m.
“I love to coach girls basketball,” said Martin, who coached the Porter-Gaud seventh-grade boys team last season. “They listen, want to learn, and are extremely dedicated. The girls work hard to improve themselves.”
Lilian Saul led Porter-Gaud with 14 points, including seven in the first quarter. Beau Faith added nine for the Cyclones. Michelle Smith led Ashley Hall with nine points.
Charlotte Country Day beat Academic Magnet, 39-35. Beth Erb led the winners with 29. Choral Linhart led the Raptors with 16.
The Porter-Gaud boys outscored First Baptist, 26-15, in the first half en route to a 59-47 victory.
K.J. James scored the nets for 30 points while Michael Preddy scored 17.
Bradford Allen led the Hurricanes with 19 points.
North Cross advanced with a 72-62 victory over Academic Magnet.
Keith Oddo was one of four North Cross players in double figures with 17. Peter Agba added 16.
Tyre Moore led the Raptors with 22 and Brendon Frankle added 19.