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County’s four finalists take different paths

County’s four finalists take different paths

By RANDY CAVIN
Special to The Messenger
The Obion County Junior High Tournament finals are set after two nail-biters, one game that was still in doubt until early in the fourth period and another that was a total blowout in the semifinal round on Saturday.
Top-seeded Lake Road will take on second-seeded South Fulton in the girls’ championship tonight at 6 at the Obion Central County High School gym. No. 1 seed South Fulton will take on No. 2 seed Hillcrest in the boys’ championship game with a tip-off scheduled at 7:30.
The Red Devilettes had to fight off a hard-charging Hillcrest team in the final period to come away with a 33-32 win and advance to the finals.
The Lady Generals beat No. 5 seed Ridgemont 34-25 to face South Fulton tonight.
In the boys’ games, No. 2 seed Hillcrest came from behind No. 3 seed Ridgemont 35-32 to earn the right to play South Fulton, which manhandled No. 4 Black Oak 52-19.
GIRLS’ SEMIFINALS
SF 33, Hillcrest 32
The Devilettes (11-6) looked like they were well on their way to the finals at the beginning of the fourth period after Emma Glisson hit the back end of a pair of free throw attempts to give SF a 30-19 lead with 4:05 to play.
The Lady Cougars (8-5) came back with a six-point run on a pair of free throws each by McClain Bell and Courtney Heuck and a jump shot by Heuck to make 30-25 with three minutes to play.
While Hillcrest was scoring, SF managed to score just four points in the final period, all coming at the free throw line.
Tiffany Potts of SF hit 1-of-2 with 2:01 to play make it a five-point game. Heuck scored once again less than a minute later cut the lead down to three.
Glisson then made it 33-29 on the front end of a pair of shots from the charity stripe. Potts was sent to line for a pair of free throws that would have put the game out of reach, but she missed both shots to give Hillcrest another chance.
Bell saw an opening for a 3-point shot with 12 seconds left and drained it. Potts was fouled again on the inbounds play and missed both foul shots with six seconds left. But the Lady Cougars could not the ball down the court for a clean shot as time ran out.
Glisson led SF with 16 points, followed by Potts with 10. Heuck scored 18 for the game-high with Bell scoring five for Hillcrest.
LR 34, Ridgemont 25
The Lady Mustangs (4-11) saw an 8-7 first period lead go downhill fast in a turnover-filled second period.
Ridgemont turned the ball over 11 times in the second period and did not score until Allie Johnson got one to go in with 2:08 to play. The Lady Generals (12-4) went on a seven-point run before that with Dharma Grinder scoring four of the seven points.
Jeana Smith capped off the first half for the Lady Generals with a jumper to give them an 18-12 lead.
Bryleigh Jennings got the second half started with a 3-pointer to make it a nine-point game. She hit three from downtown in the second half and finished with a game-high 20 points.
Lake Road led 26-19 at the end of three when Jennings broke the game open in the final period with her 3-pointers.
Grinder scored eight for LR with Smith adding four and Lindsey Craddock chipping in two. Johnson led Ridgemont with 12 points followed by Kari Osteen with five. McClay Ferrell scored four with Carly Bramlett and Destiny Miller scoring two points each.
BOYS’ SEMIFINALS
H’crest 35, R’mont 32
The Cougars (8-5) were looking up at the end of each of the first three periods and saw themselves on the losing end before rallying in the final frame.
The Mustangs (9-6) were looking like they were going to pull off the upset after leading 13-10 at the end of one, 17-13 at the half and 25-22 at the end of three.
The Mustangs made it a 27-22 game to start the fourth period on Emanuel Morgan’s basket, but the Cougars followed with a six-point run on a pair of back-to-back baskets by Greg Nance and two free-throws by Tyler Northam for a 28-27 lead with 2:19 to play.
Cody Little gave the Mustangs a one-point lead on his basket, and then Rhett Thomas Fussell tied it up at 29 on the front end of a pair of free throws. Nance gave Hillcrest the lead for good on a 3-pointer to make it 32-29. Fussell made it a two-possession game on a pair of free throws with 36.5 seconds to play after a flagrant foul was called.  
Heath Cary hit a 3-pointer to make 34-32, but that was as close as the Mustangs to get in the final 25 seconds of the game.
Hunter Brown led the Cougars with his game-high 12 points. Tyler Walton scored eight followed by Nance with six points. Tanner Walton, Fussell and Northam each scored three points for Hillcrest.
Aldren Marvin, Dalton Bridgewater and Morgan each scored six points to lead Ridgemont. Bruce Ragsdale scored five followed by Jaylee Hobbs with four. Cary scored three and Little added two points.
SF 52, Black Oak 19
A blistering of turnovers in the first period by Black Oak (7-11) turned into an offensive showing for South Fulton (15-2) in last of the semifinal games on Saturday.
The Eagles turned the ball over 14 times in the opening period, leading to a 23-point run by the Red Devils.
SF scored 10 straight points off of turnovers during the first period outburst and led 28-3 after one. The scoring run ended when Black Oak’s Brandon Swift hit a 3-pointer.
SF led 34-9 at the half and 46-15 at the end of three periods.
Nine players scored for the Red Devils with Zaccius Mays scoring 14 for the game-high and Demarcus Walker scoring 10. Jyriq Jones added nine and Kody Davidson scored six for SF.
Blake Jones led BO with five points followed by Chance Basham and Swift with four each.

Published in The Messenger 1.21.13

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