Wildcats take down
Owls and Buffaloes
Lady Cats post 3 wins over area opponents
Wildcats take down
Owls and Buffaloes
Lyndon Johnson/OCN staff
Brad West makes a breakaway layup for the Wildcats in Friday's
game as a Cannon County Lion tries his best to catch up. West scored
15 points on the evening.
By LYNDON JOHNSON, OCN staff
You win some, and you lose some, or so goes the old saying. Livingston
Academy's Wildcats are trying hard to make that "You win more,
you lose less."
The Cats played Smith County's Owls last week on Tuesday, Jan.
13 in their first home game since the Jaycees Tournament before
Early in the going, Livingston shot to impress, going on a 9-0
run by nailing a trio of trios to take the lead 10-3. Smith County
caught up, though, closing out the first quarter down by just 3
The Cats slipped up a little in the second quarter, allowing the
Owls to outscore them by some7 points (17-10) and take the lead
at halftime, 29-25.
The third quarter opened up to look like a continuation of Smith's
rejuvenation, but in the waning moments, LA scored some 13 points
to head into the fourth frame up by 5, 45-40.
The fourth quarter was all-Owls early. The Smith Countians came
out firing, scoring four times the points of LA in the first five
minutes to take the lead at 52-48.
With just 55 seconds remaining, the Owls took the lead on a 2-point
basket (55-54) before LA's Wilson Cates made a steal, made the layup,
and got fouled in the process. Cates sunk the foul shot to give
the Cats a 2-point lead.
That's how it would all wind up, with the Wildcats 57, the Owls
LA Boys Basketball Coach Danny McCoin said,
"We made plays at the end of the game that we hadn't been
making. We didn't play the greatest game, but we made the plays
when we needed to.
"We made some defensive stops and made some big baskets at
the end... we just kind of snuck in the back door and got that one."
Ball-handling machine Cates led the LA squad in scoring with 21
points, the only player to score in the double-digits. The rest
of the team's scoring was delegated out to Brad West with 9, Tyler
Livingston with 8, Lance Ruble with 6, Matt Reeder with 5, Tyler
Smith with 4, Brian Colson with 2, and Brandon Matthews with 2.
The Wildcats returned to their home court to face Cannon County's
Lions on Friday, Jan. 16.
The first quarter saw both teams try to open up an early lead,
but their attempts cancelled each other out. LA went on a run first,
and took an early lead at 6-5. Then the Lions went on a run of their
own to take the lead for themselves at 14-6. And then the Cats again
made a run of 8 before the first buzzer to tie things up at 14 after
The Wildcats kept a steady hand to the ball in the second quarter,
scoring 13 (answered by 11 from the Lions) to keep the lead at halftime
The third quarter was yet another showing of LA's impressive defensive
prowess. Livingston held the visitors to only 3 points the entirety
of the quarter, scoring 12 of their own on the capitalization. At
the end of the third, the Cats had their biggest lead of the evening
(and perhaps of the season) at 39-28.
The fourth quarter would again be a tight contest for the boys
in blue, with Cannon closing to within 2 points. LA hit 75 percent
of 4 free-throws given away by the Lions to take the late lead at
54-50 before the Lions nailed one down from way downtown to cut
the advantage to just a point, 54-53.
Another 2-shot foul was committed by the visiting Lions, but LA
missed both, and Cannon County pulled down the rebound.
After a timeout was called, the Lions swished a short-ranger at
the buzzer to take the upset, and their first district victory.
Result: LA 54, Cannon County 55.
"We didn't make the plays at the end this time," Coach
"We let Cannon County make the plays. We had some poor mistakes.
We missed some free-throws that cost us the ball game, basically.
"We had a 13-point lead on Cannon, playing real good and
looking good. And then we just didn't put it away. We didn't concentrate
enough the last four or five minutes of the game.
"Cannon never gave up," he said. "They got hot and
we got caught up in a situation where we had to play some basketball
and we weren't ready to play there at the end of the game."
Wilson Cates again got the proverbial lion's share of points for
the Wildcats, netting 17. Brad West fell just short of that mark
with 15 of his own, as did Matt Reeder with 10. Lance Ruble with
4, Wesley Puckett with 3, Brandon Matthews with 3, and Tyler Livingston
with 2 completed the Wildcats' scoring summary.
The Wildcats then travelled to Clarkrange, where they beat the
Buffaloes by a comfortable margin of 63-42.
"We played Clarkrange Saturday night, and I guess we kind
of took our frustrations out on them," Coach McCoin said.
"We came out and played a great game. The lead stayed mainly
in the double-figures all night. Everybody contributed, everybody
played real well.
"We played great defense. We caused them to make several turnovers,
and we all shot the ball well."
The Wildcats are almost over their injuries, having spent some
time without a couple of regular starters due to illness and mishaps.
"We're getting better," McCoin said.
"(Brian) Colson's at about 60 percent, you know, and everybody
else is healing up. When Brian gets back at full rudder, we're going
to be doing a lot better."
After facing the Upperman Bees in Livingston on Tuesday, Jan.
20, the Wildcats travel to Jamestown on Friday, Jan. 23 to face
the York Dragons in part deux of this season's continuation of the
legendary York Institute/Livingston Academy rivalry. The Cats will
then return home to face Pickett County's Bobcats on Tuesday, Jan.
Lady Cats post 3
wins over area opponents
Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
Livingston Academy's Katrina Beechboard loses the handle on the
basketball, which bounces right toward the waiting hands of teammate
Whitney Sells in Friday night's win over the Lady Lions of Cannon
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
The Lady Wildcats entered the zoological portion of the season last
week with games against Owls and Lions and Buffaloes.
Livingston Academy hosted Smith County's Owlettes on Tuesday, Jan.
LA jumped way ahead of the Carthage team 20-9 in the first period.
Then piled it on again 19-11 in the second to lead 39-20 at halftime.
The two teams played close in the third, with LA having the advantage
14-11 to lead comfortably 53-31 going into the fourth quarter. In
that fourth frame, the Lady Cats' comfort zone disappeared as the
Owlettes mounted an 18 point scoring effort. Livingston managed
8 points to hold off the Smith County attack and take a 61-49 District
Kasey Baltimore led LA in scoring with 17 points, including 4 of
5 from 3-point range and 5 of 6 from the foul line. Megan Thompson
also scored in double figures with 10, including 4 of 4 on foul
Haley Mullins scored 9 points, including a free throw, Katrina
Beechboard also scored 9 points, including 3 free throws, Kellie
Thurman scored 6 points, including 4 of 4 on free throws, Whitney
Sells scored 5 points, including a free throw, April Handy scored
3 points, including a free throw, and Megan Brown scored 2 points.
Thompson led LA in assists with 4, followed by Mullins with 2,
and Baltimore, Beechboard, Thurman, and Krista Clinard with 1 each.
Katrina Beechboard led LA in rebounds with 12, followed by Mullins
and Handy with 6 each, Baltimore with 5, Thompson 4, Sells 3, Thurman
and Clinard 2 each, and Kristin Hoover and Brown with 1 each.
Thurman led in steals with 3, followed by Baltimore and Thompson
with 2 each, and Beechboard and Mullins with 1 each.
Beechboard blocked 2 shots.
The Lady Wildcats remained on the home court Friday night, Jan.
16, when they played host to the Lady Lions of Cannon County.
The visitors took the battle to the Lady Cats early, fighting tooth
and claw until the last shot of the first period dropped in to give
Livingston a 17-16 advantage.
Lady Wildcats Coach Lesley Smith was not happy.
"I felt like defensively we weren't doing a good job,"
she said after the game. "We started making our shots. Katrina
came out on fire, making everything. But then we came down on defense
and it looked like it was going to be a scorefest Ð who had the
ball last. And I was very disappointed with our defensive effort
at that point."
The coach challenged her team to show what they are capable of.
"So, they answered it," Coach Smith said. "The people
that came off the bench answered it, everybody answered it, and
played great defense.
"And all our threes started falling in, and that's huge for
us because we haven't made many lately. Kasey's made several, but
she's the only one making them lately. We needed those to start
The Lady Cats outscored the Lady Lions 25-6 in the second period,
having dropped in 8 of 11 first half 3-point attempts, to lead 42-22
at halftime. For all intents and purposes the ballgame was over.
"Against Smith County on Tuesday night, we had the same kind
of lead at halftime and gave it up," Coach Smith said. "We
She stressed to her team the importance of not letting up.
"And I think they did that," she said. "I think
offensively and defensively we stayed about where we were in the
second quarter, and continued to play well."
Coach Smith put in younger players in the third and fourth quarters,
but the team kept scoring. Livingston outscored Cannon County 22-11
in the third, and then 17-11 in the fourth to win 81-44.
Katrina Beechboard scored 17 points, including two 3-pointers and
2 free throws.
April Handy scored in double figures with 14.
"People were making good passes to her," Coach Smith
said of Handy. "Katrina in particular was breaking the press
and making bullet passes to her. They were great passes, but they
were hard to catch. She was making some great catches and finishes.
"She played great rebounding and defensively for us too, especially
in the second half."
Megan Thompson scored 11 points, including three 3-pointers.
Kellie Thurman scored 9 points, including a 3-pointer and 6 of
8 free throws, Ashley Matthews scored 9 points, including 3 of 3
on free throws, Krista Clinard scored 5 points, including a 3-pointer
and 2 of 2 on free throws, Whitney Sells scored 5 points, including
a 3-pointer, Kasey Baltimore hit a 3-pointer, Mallie Stephens scored
3 points, including a free throw, Amber Brown scored 2 points, and
Haley Mullins scored 2 points.
The following night, the Lady Cats travelled to play Clarkrange
in a non-district game.
The home team held an 8-5 advantage at the end of the first period,
and again outscored LA 10-7 in the second to lead 18-12 at halftime.
The two teams settled into defensive play in the third period,
with the Lady Cats narrowly outscoring the Lady Buffaloes 7-6.
Livingston broke through in the fourth period to overpower the
host team 18-10 and pull out a 37-34 victory and move to 19-2 on
Kellie Thurman led LA in scoring with 8 points, including 2 free
throws, followed by Beechboard with 7, including a free throw, Mullins
with 6, Baltimore with 5, including a 3-pointer, Sells with 5, including
a 3-pointer, Thompson with a 3-pointer and a free throw, and Brown
with 2 points.
Incidentally, like Sparta the week before, the loss to LA boosted
Clarkrange's profile in the Tennessean's Midstate Top 10. Clarkrange
entered the poll at number 10.
After hosting Upperman's Lady Bees in another district game on
Tuesday, Jan. 20, the Lady Wildcats will travel to Jamestown on
Friday, Jan. 23 to enter the Lady Dragons' den.
"I think that's one of the toughest places for us to play,"
Coach Smith said. "Kasey's had a couple of really good games
there, so I'm hoping she can do that.
"It's a huge game."
Coach Smith is wary of the perpetual district rival, who she considers
among the district's elite.
"We have some matchup problems with York," she said.
"If Kellie can stay out of foul trouble, Kellie can limit Brandy
Brown's scoring, but she can't stop her. I don't think anybody can
Heading into the last month of the regular season, Coach Smith
is happy with where the team stands.
"This is the toughest schedule I've ever seen here,"
she said. "So, I'm real proud of where we are.
"It's been drudging, a tough walk through the season, and
it doesn't get any easier. We've just got to get stronger and stronger."
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Overton County News
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