Basketball

The Golden Aces hope to find out that there is a method to the madness.

“This is why we play the schedule we play,” Aces coach Tyler Buss told his team recently. “So that we can go win regional championships.”

After playing the likes of Evansville schools Memorial, Central and Bosse, Buss is hopeful that training will be enough when the Aces face Flora in the IHSA Class 2A regional championship tonight in McLeansboro.

Mt. Carmel (13-14) has reached the regional finals for the first time since 2008, which is also the last time the Aces have claimed the trophy. Flora enters tonight’s 7:30 p.m. affair with a record of 21-6.

The two teams met early in the season at the Hilltop. Flora prevailed, 47-44.

“We didn’t think we put our best foot forward in December,” said Buss of the first meeting. “Both teams are probably playing a lot better than they were then.”

The Aces are 8-3 against Illinois opposition.

The winner advances to the West Frankfort Sectional, along with other regional champions from Eldorado, Murphysboro and Sparta. On Tuesday, the winner will face either Nashville (22-7) or Pinckneyville (20-10), the two finalists at Sparta.

The 3-point Showdown competition precedes the game, with a start time of 6 p.m.

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