Reeds returning to Pikeville

JARED MACDONALD - [email protected]
Mason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library. - Jared MacDonald, The Ledger Independent
Mason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library. - Jared MacDonald, The Ledger Independent

Adam Reed was an honorable mention All-Conference player on the 2000-2001 Pikeville College men’s basketball team that claimed the Mid-South Conference regular season and conference championships.

Now, his daughter will look to cement her legacy at the school.

Mason County senior A.J. Reed signed to play basketball at the University of Pikeville on Friday in the Mason County High School library.

“I liked it there. It’s not too big, but it’s not really, really little either. I liked the coaches and the environment and my dad went there,” said Reed. “He knows a lot of people there that I think will take me under their wing.”

For the father, whose Pikeville team made it all the way to the NAIA semifinals, the offer came with a range of emotions.

“When I got the call I cried,” said Adam Reed. “Pikeville called and Coach [Clifton] Williams said, ‘We want her to be a Bear.’ Financially, for us with six kids, it was a blessing for real. We’re happy and we’re excited.”

He admits to pushing his daughter to his old stomping grounds, but the Mason County senior didn’t feel the pressure.

“He said wherever I feel most comfortable at,” said A.J. Reed. “When I went, I did feel really comfortable there.”

Besides having a solid ball handler, Williams is excited to have somebody with extra motivation join his squad, which posted a 14-17 record this past season.

“In recruiting in general, when you’re talking about kids, they have to want to be there. She has an extra incentive to want to be there. She really wants to follow in her dad’s footsteps and wear that black and orange,” said Williams. “He’s a Mid-South Conference champion on the men’s side. That’s our aspirations, that’s our goal too and I’m glad and happy she’s going to have an opportunity to live that out.”

Williams had the chance to watch the 5-foot-5 guard in action last summer and throughout the winter as she helped lead the Lady Royals to a 19-12 record. Her 350 points scored were most on the team and she also led the team in assists.

“She just competes. It doesn’t matter what’s going on, she’s on to the next play. Great ball handler, highly skilled and she doesn’t let size be a factor,” said Williams. “She doesn’t allow it to be a factor – she just goes. I love it.”

As a junior, Reed provided a spark off the bench on a team that featured four seniors that scored over 1,000 points in their careers, before changing roles to be the “floor general,” according to Mason County coach Brad Cox.

“She had to shoulder the load for us this year. She had to have the ball in her hands and make decisions. That’s a lot of pressure and she handled it well,” said Cox. “For her to lead us in points scored and assists, that’s a testament to her making the right decision most of the time.”

The spark her junior year included the 10th Region final, which was the most memorable game for her and Cox. She had 11 points off the bench to help the Lady Royals force overtime against George Rogers Clark, before eventually falling, 56-53.

One of the players on that team – Whitney O’Mara – was one Reed talked to about playing in college. O’Mara spent time this past winter at Bellarmine University, before transferring to Georgetown College.

“She says it’s like a job pretty much – all the basketball and the weightlifting and late practices or games on the road,” said Reed. “You just have to keep yourself motivated to do it all and your schoolwork and everything.”

Williams expects Reed to step in and contribute this winter. He has already signed five players and says he still has two more to sign. There were three seniors on the Pikeville team this winter and all were listed as guards.

“They’re going to have an opportunity to compete right away. We’re losing our senior point guard. We only had one true point guard this year. A.J. is one of two freshmen that are coming in and I’m expecting both of them to play,” said Williams. “We’re going to coach them up and throw them out there and let’s see what happens.”

Adam Reed came to Pikeville after attending junior college in Mobile, Alabama. Now, he’s excited for his daughter to be making the move from playing for the fans at the Mason County Fieldhouse to the fans at the East Kentucky Expo Center.

“What I learned down there is the people love basketball and they love their players,” said Reed. “They’re really good to people.”

Mason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library.
https://maysville-online.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_AJ-Reed_1.jpgMason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library. Jared MacDonald, The Ledger Independent

Mason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library.
https://maysville-online.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/web1_AJ-Reed_2.jpgMason County senior AJ Reed signs to play basketball at the University of Pikeville, Friday, in the Mason County High School library. Jared MacDonald, The Ledger Independent
Mason County senior A.J. Reed signs with Bears

JARED MACDONALD

[email protected]