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UC heat too much for ’Cats to handle

UC heat too much for ’Cats to handle
UC heat too much for ’Cats to handle

Union City’s B.J. Marshall tries to keep the ball during the Twisters’ victory on Tuesday.
Union City boys’ coach Shane Sisco went with the hot hands and it paid off during his team’s 83-74 bettering of Haywood on Monday.
UC reserve guard Josh Battee caught fire in the second quarter and he drained four trifectas in the frame to help the locals come back from a deficit that was up to 11 points at one point en route to knotting the game up at 33 at halftime.
“We needed a boost and Josh’s play in that second quarter gave us a big one,” Sisco said. “It seems we don’t want to play consistent, aggressive defense until we are able to get some shots to fall.
“That’s exactly opposite of how it should be, but that’s where we’re at right now and Josh’s shots falling really put a spark in us.”
To prove Sisco’s point, before Battee’s barrage of second quarter triples, the Golden Tornadoes (7-4) trailed by nine points, 20-11, but after the third quarter was finished UC bested Haywood 50-41 in the second half of play.
Also key to Union City’s win over the Tomcats (2-9) was senior Ryne Simpson, who poured in a career-high 32 points with many of his buckets from short range.
“Ryne’s very effective when he can get to the basket and that showed tonight,” Sisco explained afterward. “Not only did he make 10 baskets, but he also had 12 free throws from getting fouled while he was making shots under the goal.”
B.J. Marshall also offered double digits for the Golden Tornadoes as he accounted for 18 markers.
Union City struggled through the opening canto as Haywood bested the host 17-8. All totaled, the Twisters turned the basketball over nine times during that stretch to aid the Tomcats.
However, thanks to Battee’s lighting up of the basket from beyond the arc, UC outscored Haywood 25-15 in the second period to knot the game up at intermission.
In the third quarter, the Golden Tornadoes edged ahead with a 56-52 advantage with one quarter remaining.
The Tomcats pulled to within three points 69-66 with three minutes remaining in the game, but Colton Speed sank his only trey of the evening to put a halt to the visiting team’s momentum.
After the trifecta, Marshall converted a quick turnover into a bucket to give UC an eight point cushion.
UC 63, Fulton Co. 44 (G)
The Lady Tornadoes bounced back Monday from a tough overtime loss vs. Hancock County over the weekend in the first round of the Trigg County event to beat neighboring Fulton County and move into fifth-place game of the tourney this morning.
UC was scheduled to battle either the host team or Dawson Springs (Ky.).
On Monday, Whitney Smith made four 3-pointers and scored a career-high 17 markers as the Lady Twisters stormed to a 36-16 halftime lead vs. Fulton County and then cruised.
Union City (8-4) was led by Labrica Ward, who totaled 18 points and 16 rebounds, while Kierra Davis hit a trio of treys and scored all 11 of her points in the second period. Marcetta Ross turned in a solid effort with eight points and nine rebounds.
The Tornado girls led by as many as 23 points early in the second half and never saw their lead dwindle to under double figures thereafter.
UC made nine 3-pointers in all and grabbed 22 offensive rebounds.
OC 85, Graves Co. 74 (G)
Chassidy Fussell offered her third double-double in as many games at the BB&T Christmas Shootout in Murray as the Lady Rebels claimed fifth place.
All totaled, Fussell pitched in 28 points and she pulled down 14 rebounds and dished out seven assists for Central (10-3).
However, the story was not all about the junior guard/forward as three of her OC teammates also reached double digits during the triumph.
Macy Wright pitched in 14 points, while Laurie Craddock and Mackenzie Tucker each accounted for a dozen.
The Lady Rebels led by as many as 30 points early in the fourth quarter.
The Obion Central girls return to action on Jan. 6 against Dyersburg.
Sports reporter Kenneth Coker can be contacted by e-mail at kcoker@ucmessenger.com.

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