Darren Doyle, story: photos by Rick Walters and Kristin McGrew
One local man and his family reminisced together at the Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame recently.
Mark Hennion, who was a sophomore starter on the Edmonson County Wildcat 1976 state basketball championship team, heard about the facility and the current exhibit that features the '76 team. His photo is featured on one of the displays and shows Hennion cutting down a portion of the net on championship night, which was March 27, 1976.
Hennion said the visit brought back plenty of good memories from that magical season 45 years ago.
"We proved that a little school could play ball with the bigger schools," he said. "We didn't really know how big of a deal it was when we won it; I know I didn't. Every time we went out there we wanted to win that game. And when we won that one, we'd want to win the next one. Looking back on it, boy it really was something."
Hennion scored 25 points in the championship game in a 74-52 win over Christian County. While he was the leading scorer for the Wildcats over the course of the Sweet Sixteen tournament, putting up 69 total points and averaging 17.3 ppg during that span, he said that playing together as a team is what brought them success.
"Once I had a radio guy asking me all these questions about me scoring this on that game, and that on another, and I just told him 'Look, this wasn't about me. We won this thing by playing team ball and none of us cared about how many points somebody was scoring. It was about winning together and if I'd have only scored two points and we won, that would've been plenty good for me, and all the other guys would say the same.'"
KSHBHF Board Member Rick Walters said they were thrilled to see the Hennion family visit the museum and hopes this will encourage others to visit. The facility is currently featuring the Edmonson County display, which features the team trophy, currently on loan from Edmonson County High, a team photo, and other items from the historic achievement from the tiny school in Brownsville.
Hennion said he and his family enjoyed the visit and said nothing but good things about the facility.
"It tickled them to death that we came," he said. "They treated us like royalty and just kept on taking pictures."
The KHSBHF is located at Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame, 212 W. Dixie Avenue, Elizabethtown, KY 42701. You can reach them by clicking here.