By MIKE HUTCHENS
Messenger Sports Editor
The Obion Central girls were hoping to avoid a hangover.
The Rebel boys were looking for a carryover.
Neither got their wish.
Hot-shooting Westview handed OC a double defeat in District 13AA Friday night, the Lady Chargers winning a Game 1 showdown of league unbeatens 57-48 and the Martin boys lighting up Central 88-64 in the nightcap.
The loss was the second straight for the Rebel girls (15-5, 6-1), who were routed by Columbia in the championship game of the Dragon Fire Invitational in their final game of the first half of the season.
Westview (16-2, 8-0) sank nine 3-pointers — three of those in a critical 24-12 third-quarter burst after the two teams were knotted at 23 at the half — to hand Obion Central its first road district loss in head coach Lyle LaRue’s 3 1/2-season tenure.
Kaley Leyhue scored all eight of her points in that fateful third frame for the Lady Chargers, while Tiffany Rechis finished with four treys and a game-high 20 points for the winners.
Martin (15-4, 7-1) buried a whopping 17 shots from beyond the arc in the nightcap to kill the momentum of a Rebel boys’ team that was coming off three impressive wins that netted them the championship of the Nera White Christmas Tournament in Macon County.
A 10-2 Charger run in the final two minutes of the first half turned a small Central deficit into a 13-point hole, and Westview then put on a 3-point clinic over the third and fourth quarters as eight different players in all made 3-point shots. Tyquis Johnson hit five of those, while freshman Dallas Callins came off the bench to nail four.
Things likely will get no easier for the Rebel teams on Tuesday as they host always-athletic Covington in another 13AA twinbill.
Westview 57, OC 48 (G)
The Lady Chargers’ 3-point accuracy and a 1-3-1 zone defense proved to be too much for Central.
“They (Westview) shot the ball well and they deserved to win,” OC skipper LaRue said afterward. “And it looked like they wanted to win worse than we did. That said, I was pleased afterward that our girls didn’t point fingers and play the blame-game. They said, ‘This is on us and only we can fix it and keep it from happening again.’ They’re usually very resilient.
“Their 1-3-1 takes away your sight lanes because they’re long and if you only see it once or twice a year, it’s hard to simulate in practice and prepare for. There was a big stretch at the end of the second quarter where we had the ball up five and, instead of increasing our lead, we turned the ball over and they ended up tying it up at halftime. In the third quarter, we had three straight possessions where one or two girls didn’t do what they were supposed to and we didn’t score. In turn, they scored eight straight points and pulled away. We just weren’t on the same page.”
Neither team led by more than five in the first half when each made five 3-pointers and four deuces.
Shannon Wiggins had a pair of those trifectas for the Lady Rebs, taking up the slack for University of Memphis signee Brandi Goodman, who was constantly double-teamed on the interior.
A longball by Rachel Jones at the 2:35 mark gave OC its biggest lead (23-18) before the home team scored the final five points of the half, evening the count on a Teddy Vincent bucket.
Jones’ old-fashioned 3-point play early in the second half accounted for Obion Central’s last lead at 26-25. Leyhue twice connected from the perimeter and also scored on a nice cut to the basket before Rechis — who had all but four of her game-best point total in the first half — got two of those markers to cap a 9-2 spurt and make it 42-33 late in the period. Kaitlyn Harrelson capped a 24-point quarter with a triple in the waning seconds to make it 47-35 Westview heading into the stretch run.
The Lady Rebels got only as close as 51-44 on a pair of Ali McEwen free throws with just under three minutes remaining before Rechis and Jasmine Howard — who was solid inside in the second half — to secure the victory.
Goodman finished with 15 points — well under her average — and Wiggins had 11 to top the OC score sheet.
Westview 88, OC 64 (B)
The Rebels (9-7, 3-4) played virtually even with Martin for the first 14 minutes thanks to good first-quarter shooting by Mike Klein and a 10-point second period from Brett Scillion inside.
Down just 36-31 after a Shaw Logan bucket with only a couple of minutes left before the break, though, the Chargers forced a handful of turnovers that they turned into instant offense. A 3-pointer by R.J. Scott, consecutive steals and buckets by Jazell Baker and a free throw by Johnson were part of a telling flurry that opened a 46-33 Westview lead at the intermission.
“Give them credit for how they shot the ball,” OC skipper Bill Kail said. “If we take care of the ball and block out in the second quarter, it’s a four- or six-point game at the half instead of them having a double-figure lead. That was huge. They’re more athletic than us and we have to scramble around and try to make up that type of deficit and then they shoot the way they did, we make it really tough on ourselves.
“I thought it came down to composure, not making hustle plays and us not taking care of the basketball.”
After Zack King’s bucket cut the deficit to 51-44 with just under five minutes left in the third quarter, the Chargers scored 14 of the next 16 points to turn the game into a blowout. Baker had a traditional 3-point play and made a shot from the perimeter, Johnson buried a deep 3-all, and Javier Gordon scored inside to make it 65-46 with 2:08 to play.
A host of Charger reserves got in on the 3-point act in the final frame when the lead grew to as much as 84-53.
Scillion led Obion Central with 16 points, while both Klein and King tallied 11.
Sports editor Mike Hutchens can be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Published in The Messenger 1.7.13