By MIKE HUTCHENS and KEVIN WEAKS
MURFREESBORO — No one can accuse Union City of dodging good teams.
The 2011-12 Lady Tornadoes, who earned the right to be listed among the elite girls’ basketball teams in Tennessee, played some of the best squads in two states in posting a 22-11 record and advancing to the TSSAA Class A Girls’ State Tournament semifinals.
Those 11 losses came to eight different teams — Lake County, Obion County Central, Bradford, Dresden, Westview and Jackson County in Tennessee along with Hopkinsville and Bowling Green in Kentucky.
Lake County, which claimed three wins over the Lady Twisters before losing to UC in the Region 7A Tournament championship game, finished 34-5 and advanced to the TSSAA 1A state quarterfinals.
Bradford posted a 20-12 record and reached the Region 7A tourney semifinals. UC split its two games with the Lady Red Devils.
Dresden, which finished the regular season ranked ninth, was 1-2 vs. Union City and 24-7 overall. The Lady Lions won the District 13A Tournament and reached the 7A semifinals.
Westview was 20-12 and advanced to the Region 7AA Tournament semifinals. UC was 1-1 against the Lady Chargers but had to vacate the win, one of four wins the Lady Tornadoes had to give up for using an ineligible player early in the season.
Bowling Green finished its season at 25-4, winning the 14th District championship and advancing to the 4th Region semifinals.
Hoptown, which needed overtime to beat Union City 65-60 at Murray during Christmas break, posted a 32-5 overall record. The Lady Tigers won the 8th District and 2nd Region championships and reached the KHSAA Sweet 16 Girls’ State Tournament quarterfinals, beating Marshall County in the opening round.
OC and Jackson County reached the state finals of their respective classifications, each finishing as runner-up.
Obion Central, which claimed two wins over Union City, posted a 35-3 record and was the District 13AA and Region 7AA champion. Jackson County was 29-7, winning the District 7A and Region 4A titles
In all, those eight teams posted a combined record of 219-55 with nine postseason championships.
NO MAGIC WORDS — Union City head coach Eddie Suiter was tagged with a technical foul with 1:43 to play and his team down 28-22 in what was ultimately a 36-26 defeat in Friday’s semifinals against Jackson County.
Asked afterward if anything in particular he might’ve said caused him to get the ‘T,’ Suiter claimed not.
“All I asked him (the official) on the foul call was if he was sure his buddy (another official) didn’t have a walk first,” the coach insisted. “That was it.
“Now, I’d been on him all game and I might should’ve gotten one earlier. I guess he’d just heard enough.”
Caroline Warden made both free throws following the call, but JC failed to convert the ensuing possession into points.
DID YOU KNOW? — Anna Moore briefly left Friday’s game midway through the fourth quarter when she collided with a Jackson County player while chasing a loose ball at midcourt. Moore, who later returned, said she took an inadvertent knee to the shin on the play and was still walking gingerly afterward. A standout tennis player who advanced to the state tournament last year with doubles partner Tara Elam, Moore and the rest of the UC netters are scheduled to open their spring season today against Trinity Christian Academy. … Had the Lady Tornadoes not been forced to vacate four victories earlier in the season due to the use of an ineligible player, they would’ve recorded 26 victories — a new school record by three. As of now, the 2005-06 team coached by Jeff Chandler that went 23-8 and advanced to the regional semifinals, holds the modern-era mark for most wins in a season. This year’s club ranks second with a final tally of 22. … District 14A did not come home completely empty handed as Lake County’s T.T. Flowers won Class A’s Miss Basketball. Flowers, whose Lady Falcon team was beaten in overtime in the quarterfinals for the second straight year, was a four-year starter for the Falcons who averaged 15 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals per game. She scored over 2,000 points in her career at Lake County and was a Miss Basketball finalist last year as a junior.
Published in The Messenger 3.12.12