Carbon Hill up to No. 2 in poll
by Johnathan Bentley
Jan 13, 2011 | 2214 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Carbon Hill's Kolton Nichols (21) drives to the basket during the Bulldogs' win over Belgreen earlier this season. Carbon Hill (15-0) is ranked No. 2 in Class 3A. (Photo by Chris Dutton)
Carbon Hill's Kolton Nichols (21) drives to the basket during the Bulldogs' win over Belgreen earlier this season. Carbon Hill (15-0) is ranked No. 2 in Class 3A. (Photo by Chris Dutton)
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Carbon Hill’s rise to the top continues.

The Bulldogs are ranked No. 2 in Class 3A in the Alabama Sports Writers Association poll this week.

Carbon Hill (15-0) is one of just five undefeated, ranked teams in the poll. The Bulldogs moved up one spot from last week and are behind top-ranked Sumter County.

“I think it’s great for the kids and the community of Carbon Hill,” coach Robert Epps said. “It instills some pride in the school. The kids have bought in to what we’re doing. Any time you get ranked that high, it means the kids have put in some work.”

Carbon Hill’s starting lineup is made up of two seniors (Kolton Nichols and Conner Young), two juniors (Tylor Owens and Blaine Eads) and a freshman (Gerald Smith).

Seniors David Mote, Jacob Hudson, Landon Herron and Zac Pilgrim also give the Bulldogs a boost off the bench.

“Both Kolton and David started out as guards in ninth grade. It’s kind of amazing how things have evolved. I’m glad we started them out on the perimeter. Very few teams have size and guard play at the same time. We are very fortunate,” Epps said.

“We have 12 guys we put on the floor and all 12 can handle the ball and do things with the ball.”

The Bulldogs have blistered the competition this season with only two opponents (Fayette County and Belgreen) staying within double digits. They are winning games by an average of 26.5 points per game.

Carbon Hill is also 9-0 against schools in Walker County, winning those games by an average of 34.8 points a game.

Due to inclement weather this week, the Bulldogs missed a pair of games.

The Fayette County game, originally set for Thursday, has been moved to Saturday at Carbon Hill. The JV game will start at 3:30 p.m. followed by the varsity girls at 5 p.m. and the varsity boys at 6:30 p.m.

Carbon Hill has already knocked off Fayette County twice, winning on the road (61-43) and in the first round of the Bevill-Fayette Lions Club Tournament (75-67).

The Winfield game, a Class 3A, Area 11 game that was to be played on Tuesday, has been moved to Jan. 28, also at Carbon Hill.

The Bulldogs have also picked up a game with Pleasant Grove, ranked No. 9 in Class 5A. The game will be played on Thursday, Feb. 3 at Carbon Hill.

Carbon Hill will play in the Walker County Basketball Tournament beginning Monday at Dora High School.

The Bulldogs are the top seed for the tournament.