January 16, 2013

Prep roundup: Model sweeps at Murray County

Devin Golden
devingolden@daltoncitizen.com

CHATSWORTH — Murray County’s boys basketball team would like to have this one back.

Specifically, the Indians would like to replay the first six minutes of the second half.

Murray County lost a Region 7-2A showdown 61-52 to Model in a game that was even aside from the Blue Devils’ 16-2 run to start the third quarter. In the earlier game at Kenneth Ross Gymnasium, Murray County’s girls fell 60-29.

The Indians (9-9, 4-3) and Blue Devils (10-7, 4-3) were tied at 29 at halftime, with Murray County’s 9-4 lead with three minutes remaining in the first quarter being the biggest margin at that point.

Model scored six straight points to begin the second half and forced a Murray County timeout. After scoring seven of the next nine and forcing another Indians timeout, the Blue Devils’ Robert Pearson hit a 3-pointer to give his side a 45-31 lead with some two minutes remaining in the quarter.

“We didn’t have (intensity) on offense,” Murray County coach Greg Linder said. “We were going through the motions. When you do that, then you don’t get open. For whatever reason, we kind of floated through the first few minutes of the third quarter and dug ourselves a hole. We looked like it was a dreary, rainy day.”

The Indians cut the deficit to 45-35 heading into the final period, and slowly kept chipping away until they were down 50-45 with 4:30 to play. A Nakia Watkins 3-point play pushed Model’s lead to eight, and Murray County never got closer than six the rest of the game.

“The best thing we did to go on that run was stopped turning the ball over,” Model coach Jacob Travis said.

“We turned it over 11 times in the first half, and in the second half we did a couple times.”

Brady Todd had 14 points at halftime and finished with a game-high 21 points, but did not score at all in the third quarter for the Indians, who shot just 4-for-15 from the 3-point line.

Cesar Romero finished with 10 points off the bench for Murray County, while Model had three players — Danny Fisher with 15, V.J. Sexton with 12 and Watkins with 11 — in double digits.

Model girls 60, Murray County 29: The Lady Blue Devils (14-4, 4-1) led 21-7 after the opening quarter, 35-17 at halftime and 52-21 after three periods.

The best moments for the Lady Indians (6-12, 3-4) came at the end of the first half. After falling behind 33-10 with 3:15 left, Murray County scored seven straight points to climb within 16, the closest the team got the rest of the game.

“They’re that good,” Murray County coach Michael Hill said. “They reached the final four (last year in Class 2A) and only graduated one senior. ... They’re that caliber of a team.”

Holly Stanfield led the Lady Indians with 10 points. Carla Clemmons scored 14 for Model, while Timia Reynolds chipped in 11.

Dalton girls 66, LaFayette 46: Shooting better than 60 percent from the field during the first half and finishing the night 12-for-14 at the free-throw line, the Lady Catamounts (15-4) had little trouble remaining undefeated in sub-region play four games into the 7B-4A schedule.

Maddie Howell paced Dalton’s scoring with a 17-point performance and fellow senior Brooke Thomas added 14. They were among 11 Lady Cats who scored in the rout at home — Dalton led 28-10 by the end of the first quarter, 41-16 at halftime and 56-27 going into the final period.

“We played real well, and we shot the ball extremely well,” Dalton coach Jeff McKinney said. “That was a big plus for us. ... And it wasn’t just one person. We spread it around quite a bit.”

Dalton boys 57, LaFayette 55: Leading by 11 with less than two minutes to play, the Cats missed three free throws while LaFayette hit three 3-pointers to make things close.

However, the Ramblers couldn’t hit a fourth, missing a shot at the buzzer to seal the win for the Cats (13-4, 3-1 Sub-region 7B-4A), who took control with a 19-2 run in the third quarter.

Demond Rucker led Dalton with 22 points and eight rebounds, while Rico Mears and Alex Bautista added 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Coahulla Creek girls 50, Gordon Central 44: The Lady Colts kept on rolling, picking up their fifth straight win by rallying past the visiting Lady War-riors in a Region 5-3A matchup that moved them a win shy of .500 in league play.

Macey Fossett led Coahulla Creek (5-11, 3-4) with 17 points, while Hannah Locke added 10 points and nine rebounds.

Gordon Central led 27-15 at halftime, but the Lady Colts took off in the third quarter, outscoring the Lady Warriors 20-8 in that period to tie the game heading into the final period, where they closed out another victory.

“I think we outrebounded them by 10, which was huge, and our turnovers were down,” said Lady Colts coach Ryan Long, who is in his first season leading the program.” “... Our defensive intensity was not there the first half, but the second half we picked it up a whole lot.

“At halftime, I challenged them and told them to step up and play like the players that they are, and they responded very well to that.”

Gordon Central boys 67, Coahulla Creek 47: Cordarius Tarver and Jordan Tant each had 10 points for the Colts (2-13, 1-6 Region 5-3A) while Michael Ward scored nine in the loss.

Gordon Central led 19-4 after the first quarter, 37-16 at halftime and 56-28 entering the final period.

“They got off to a really fast start,” Coahulla Creek coach Matthew Queener said. “They’re just really athletic. They put a lot of pressure on the basketball. We did pretty well not turning the ball over. We got beat in transition.”

Gordon Lee girls 80, Christian Heritage 34: Sarah Massengale had 14 points and Drew Tipton added nine for the Lady Lions (5-12) who fell to 2-2 in Sub-region 6A-A play with the home loss to Gordon Lee, which is ranked No. 5 in Class A by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Katherine Chambers’ 15-point performance was tops among three Lady Trojans who finished in double figures.

Down 46-10 at halftime, Christian Heritage enjoyed more offensive success in the final two quarters.

“We played tighter against them in the second half and we thought that was a plus,” Lady Lions coach Heather Lowery said. “Our girls played hard but (Gordon Lee) lit it up.”

Gordon Lee boys 63, Christian Heritage 60: Tied at the half, the Trojans and Lions went back and forth, but Gordon Lee made the plays down the stretch to take the victory.

Will Patterson and Michael McKinney both scored 16 points for Christian Heritage (7-5, 1-3 Sub-region 6A-A), while Cameron Locke added 11. Samuel Welsh led the Trojans with 26.

Cartersville girls 54, North Murray 39: The Lady Mountaineers led 15-6 after one quarter and 23-20 at halftime, but the Lady Purple Hurricanes surged to a 37-27 lead entering the final period and held on for the Region 5-3A win in Cartersville.

Erin Robinson had 10 points to lead North Murray (11-6, 4-3), while Kara Deal, Meagan Spivey and Grace Phillips each added six.

The Lady Mountaineers closed the gap to a couple of baskets late in the game, coach Keith Robinette said, but Cartersville was stronger on offense in the second half.

“(Cartersville) did get hot on the outside,” Robinette said. “They had a couple of girls knock down some outside shots, and that really hurt us. They found their rhythm a little bit, and we couldn’t score to keep up.”

Cartersville boys 65, North Murray 44: Zach Vess’ 25-point performance was the only double-figure scoring effort for the visiting Mountaineers (14-3, 5-2 Region 5-3A) in their second straight loss since ending a 13-game winning streak.

North Murray trailed 20-14 after one quarter and 36-30 at halftime. The Purple Hurricanes, 18-0 and ranked No. 1 in Class 3A by the AJC, stretched their legs in the final two periods to pull away, although coach Tim Ellis said the game was played closer than the final score indicated.

“We were down 10 going into the fourth quarter, and we felt like we had to try to change up the pace a little bit just to see if we could start gambling a little bit defensively,” Ellis said. “But they’re long enough and a good, quality coached team, and they diced us up pretty good there and got some easy shots and layups.

“We tried to go win it by pressing and rotating and trying to get them playing a little bit fast, but they could handle playing fast.”

Vess had 16 of his 25 points in the first half.

Northwest Whitfield JV girls 47, Southeast Whitfield 18: Karli Williams scored 11 points for the Lady Bruins (11-1), while Mary Kate Allen added nine points and nine rebounds. Whitley Brooker also chipped in nine points.

For the Lady Raiders (9-2), Emily Beck and Aubrie Hill each scored three points.

Gordon Lee JV girls 45, Christian Heritage 36: Pressley Poag scored 17 points to lead the Lady Lions (8-4).



Wrestling



• Host Northwest swept past Ringgold and Coahulla Creek in duals, with the Bruins winning 51-21 over the Tigers and 58-9 over the Colts.

Alex Reynolds (145 pounds), Blake Hayes (112), Bryan Gembe (106), Victor Lopez (220) and A.J. Orozco each went 2-0 to lead the Bruins (22-15). Coahulla Creek did not report its results from the duals.

n North Murray did not report results from Tuesday’s scheduled dual at Gilmer by The Daily Citizen’s deadline.