Prep Sports Report: Approved football hosting will make CovCath, Highlands district rivals rivals once again – NKyTribune


By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

Highlands and Covington Catholic will once again be district rivals in football as part of the statewide football realignment approved Wednesday by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association.

Highlands' defensive players encountered a Cooper ball carrier during a playoff game last season. (Photo by Dale Dawn)

The realignment will occur for the 2025 and 2026 seasons, with high school teams split into six classes based on enrollment. Highlands will be downgraded from Class 5A to 4A and will be part of a district with CovCath, Holmes, Harrison County and Mason County.

The teams remaining in the Class 5A district are Cooper, Conner, Boone County, Dixie Heights and Scott. Last season, Cooper was state runner-up in Class 5A and CovCath was state runner-up in Class 4A.

St. Henry will play its first varsity season in 2025 as a member of a realigned Class 2A district that will also include Beechwood, Walton-Verona, Bracken County, Gallatin County and Owen County.

The Class 1A and 6A districts, which include the Northern Kentucky teams, remain unchanged. But Lloyd will move to a new Class 3A district with Bourbon County, Carroll County, Pendleton County and Henry County.

Here is an overview of the district alignments approved for the 2025 and 2026 seasons:

District 3 – Bellevue, Dayton, Newport, Newport Central Catholic.
District 4 – Brossart, Holy Cross, Ludlow, Trimble County.
District 5 – Beechwood, Bracken County, Gallatin County, Owen County, St. Henry, Walton-Verona.
District 5 – Bourbon County, Carroll County, Henry County, Lloyd, Pendleton County.
District 5 – Covington Catholic, Harrison County, Highlands, Holmes, Mason County.
District 5 – Boone County, Conner, Cooper, Dixie Heights, Scott.
District 6 – Campbell County, Great Crossing, Ryle, Simon Kenton

Ludlow's new girls basketball head coach will resume his career

Ryan Bowman

Ryan Bowman will continue his career as head girls basketball coach at Ludlow High School next season.

Bowman, 42, was in charge of Boone County's girls program for four seasons from 2017 to 2021, when his teams compiled a 45-67 record. Previously, he was on the boys basketball coaching staff at Cooper, Conner and Ryle for a total of 11 years.

He takes the reins of a Ludlow girls team that posted a 17-14 record and finished first in the Division III conference standings under Blake Clary, who stepped down as head coach after two seasons.

The Panthers had mostly seniors in their starting lineup last season. The team's top returnee is Addy Garrett, a second-year guard who averaged 15.3 points and 3.9 rebounds per game.

The Bellevue baseball program inducts the first group into the Wall of Honor

The first group of inductees into the Bellevue Baseball Wall of Honor included players from nine past decades who were honored at a ceremony Friday.

The list included 1929 graduate John “Bus” Clark and 1938 graduate Bob “Moose” Himmler. They both played before the Kentucky High School Athletic Association made baseball a sanctioned sport in 1940.

Himmler later became Bellevue's head coach and took the 1947 team to the state championship game. Two players on that team were 1948 graduates Bernie “Sonny” Rechtin and Hershel Hisle, who were also among the first Wall of Honor inductees.

The other inductees and their senior years are Bob Jones (1958), Mike Swauger (1965), Grant Cofojohn (1974), Doak Schulte (1974), Doug Miller (1983), Lenny Bays (1998), Alex Hegge (2010) and Briley Pager (2016).